America’s Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program, also known as LIHEAP or simply Energy Assistance, turns 40 today. Established by Congress on August 13, 1981, Energy Assistance is the biggest federal program of its kind available to households in the United States, helping to “pay heating and cooling bills, getting those services reconnected, and improving the energy efficiency of homes through weatherization services.” And, Community Action agencies such as ours help to administer more than 40 percent of all LIHEAP dollars across America – more than $1.5 billion each year.
Community Action Partnership of Ramsey & Washington is still accepting applications for the current Energy Assistance program year. Plus, eligibility guidelines have been increased for 2021 to include households at or below 60% of the state median income. Qualifying individuals and families can receive up to $1,600 to assist them in paying their energy bills and additional crisis funds of up to $1,200 to cover past due bills and avoid service disconnection. Energy Assistance beneficiaries may also qualify for free furnace repair/replacement as well as the Weatherization Assistance Program, which provides energy efficient upgrades and home improvements at no cost to renters and homeowners.
Households in Ramsey and Washington counties, including current Energy Assistance recipients and new applicants, can contact Community Action Partnership of Ramsey & Washington Counties by calling 651-645-6470, sending an email to email@example.com, or visiting us online at https://caprw.org/services/energy-food-housing/energy-assistance.html. Applications can also be picked up at our St. Paul headquarters (450 Syndicate Street North – Suite 122) or at our Washington County program site in Oakdale (1101 Geneva Avenue North). If you choose to visit us in person, remember that masks are currently required for everyone, regardless of vaccination status, who visit or work at the Community Action Resource Center or other Community Action-run facility. For those residing in other Minnesota counties that are in need our Energy Assistance, please visit the Minnesota Department of Commerce at https://mn.gov/commerce/consumers/consumer-assistance/energy-assistance/ to find your local service provider.