State Funds Available For Energy Assistance - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

8/8/03

State Funds Available For Energy Assistance

The City of Lubbock has received an energy assistance grant from the Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs, and the funds will be available the week of August 11th to assist low-income persons with their utility bills.

The state-funded Comprehensive Energy Assistance Program (CEAP) Grant is designed to help low-income persons pay their energy bills. Priority is given to the elderly, disabled, and homes with small children.

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This is not an entitlement program, and people who apply for funds are not guaranteed assistance. Each application will be evaluated and the level of assistance will be determined.

The City of Lubbock will work with two local agencies to implement the program – Neighborhood House (806) 741-0459 and Catholic Family Services (806) 765-8475. Neighborhood House will handle elderly and disabled applicants, and those who seek assistance due to a weather crisis. Catholic Family Services will assist applicants who are transitioning out of poverty and who have to provide a co-pay for the assistance.

All applicants must call the appropriate agency and make an appointment for an interview. Walk-ins will not be seen. Both agencies will start taking appointments beginning Monday.

The elderly and disabled part of the grant helps qualified applicants with utility bill assistance during the year. Lubbock residents who think they may quality for assistance should contact Neighborhood House.

Neighborhood House also will handle the weather crisis component of the grant, which pays for energy usage only during a crisis month. Weather crisis is defined using the temperatures of each month, and the City has declared July a crisis month. Residents who receive their July utility bills and need assistance in paying them may quality for these funds. This program does not assist with arrears, late charges, or deposits. This component is open to income-qualified persons.

The final component to the CEAP grant emphasizes energy reduction in the home. Referrals to this program will come from Neighborhood House and Catholic Family Services. The goals of the CEAP program are to reduce energy consumption and assist low-income persons with energy bills during peak times.

For further information call Joe Rangel at (806) 775-2309 or one of the agencies listed above.

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