Thursday, October 22, 2009

HHS Provides More Than $2.6 Billion to States to Help Low-Income Households with Energy Costs

HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius today announced the release of more than $2.6 billion to states to help low income citizens with their heating bills during October, November and December of this year. These funds represent grants to states, tribes and territories under the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP).

"By releasing this money now, we are helping to provide needed assistance to millions of Americans who otherwise might not be able to afford heat this winter," Secretary Sebelius said. "This program helps to offset seasonal energy costs for low income families, leaving more of
their income to use for other necessities."

LIHEAP helps eligible families pay the costs of heating and insulating their homes in the winter, and cooling their homes in the summer. HHS is releasing such a large allocation of LIHEAP funds now in order to ensure that states have resources available to support their energy assistance programs as the weather turns colder.

"Each year LIHEAP helps more than five million low income households deal with energy costs," said Carmen Nazario, assistant secretary for children and families. "We will continue to work with states, tribes and territories to assure their heating assistance programs work effectively."

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