(WBNG Binghamton) Governor Andrew M. Cuomo on Thursday announced that households across the state can begin applying for heating assistance this winter through New York’s Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP) on Monday, Nov. 18.
According to a news release from Cuomo's office:
HEAP, which is overseen by the New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance (OTDA), is a federally-funded program that provides up to $650 for eligible households to pay for energy costs in order to keep their homes warm during the winter.
For the first time, anyone living outside of New York City who is seeking a regular HEAP benefit, which assists households that pay a high proportion of household income for energy, will be able to submit applications online at myBenefits.ny.gov starting on November 18.
“As temperatures begin to drop, the State’s Home Energy Assistance Program is available to help New Yorkers meet heating costs,” Governor Cuomo said. “Beginning Monday, households across the state can begin applying and with the introduction of the online application, it is now easier than ever for people outside of New York City to apply for HEAP. Every winter season, this program is a critical resource for low-income families and senior citizens with fixed incomes in keeping their homes warm. I urge New Yorkers who need heating assistance in the coming months to apply this season.”
For the 2013-14 HEAP heating season, the maximum regular benefit a household could receive is $650. Eligibility for HEAP is based on income and household size:
Household Size Maximum Gross Monthly Income
Each additional Add $503
Eligible households can receive one regular HEAP benefit per season, but could also be eligible for an emergency HEAP benefit if they are in danger of running out of heating fuel or having their utility service shut off. Applications for emergency HEAP benefits will be accepted beginning Thursday, Jan. 2, 2014. Households in an energy emergency situation should call their local department of social services for assistance.
“As the cold weather sets in, energy consumption and the resulting utility bills rise, leaving many New Yorkers looking for help,” said OTDA Commissioner Kristin M. Proud. “HEAP provides crucial energy assistance benefits that elderly and low-income households rely upon to help make ends meet.”
In addition, the Heating Equipment Repair and Replacement Component of the Home Energy Assistance Program is available to help eligible low-income homeowners repair or replace furnaces, boilers and other direct heating components necessary to keep their home's primary heating source functional. Applications for this component must be made in person at the local department of social services.
New York residents can also check if they may be eligible for HEAP, and numerous other benefits, by answering a few questions online at myBenefits.ny.gov.
Last winter, more than 1.4 million households throughout New York State received HEAP benefits.