Help with utility bills, cooling devices


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Eligible households can receive assistance with utility bills, central air-conditioning repairs, and air-conditioning unit and/or fan purchases through the Home Energy Assistance Summer Crisis Program which runs from July 1 through Sept. 30.

Ohioans with a household income at or below 175 percent of the federal poverty guidelines and have a member of the household who is at least 60 years old, has been diagnosed with COVID-19 in the last 12 months, or can provide physician documentation that cooling assistance is needed for a household member’s health, are eligible. Additional eligibility factors include households who have a disconnect notice, have been shut off, or are trying to establish new electric services.

The Summer Crisis Program is administered by the Ohio Development Services Agency. Thanks to a grant received by the Ohio Department of Development, the Area Agency on Aging District 7, Inc., is able to make this program available locally to seniors and those with disabilities through a number of partners included in its 10-county district. They include:

Adams County – Adams/Brown Economic Opportunities, Inc.;

Brown County – Adams/Brown Economic Opportunities, Inc.;

Gallia County – Gallia-Meigs CAA, Inc.;

Highland County – Highland County Community Action Organization;

Jackson County – Jackson/Vinton Community Action, Inc.;

Lawrence County – Ironton-Lawrence County Area Community Action Organization;

Pike County – Community Action Committee of Pike County;

Ross County – Ross County Community Action Committee, Inc.;

Scioto County – Community Action Commission of Scioto County;

Vinton County – Jackson/Vinton Community Action, Inc.

You can obtain an application online at the Ohio Development Services Agency’s website at energyhelp.ohio.gov or you can contact any of the partners listed previously for more information. Additional information is required for the application including copies of your most recent utility bills, a list of all household members, proof of citizenship or legal residency for all household members, and proof of medical condition verified by a licensed physician or registered nurse practitioner. Applicants also need to include proof of income. Depending on your income type, additional forms may be required.

For more information, log on to https://development.ohio.gov/is/is_heapsummer.htm.

Submitted by Jenni Lewis, director of community outreach and training, Area Agency on Aging District 7, Inc.

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