Arkansas families can get help paying utility, heating and cooling bills from LIHEAP, or the Home Energy Assistance Program. Grants from the federal government are available across the state, and funds are used to help low income families, seniors, and disabled with paying utilities. It is often combined with weatherization, which is a free energy conservation program.
The programs are always in high demand, and funding from the United States Department for Health and Human Services is limited. Financial aid is distributed on a first come and first serve basis, with priority given to people who are most at risk if their power is disconnected. Individuals will need to apply at their local community action agency in Arkansas for LIHEAP.
The federal government and state of Arkansas funded Home Energy Assistance Program provides cash grants and financial assistance to tens of thousands of residents every year, and funds can help people pay their utilities. A wide variety of fuel types can be paid for, including propane, natural gas, electricity, kerosene, air conditioning bills, and more. LIHEAP is often offered along with free weatherization services and case management activities. Together these programs can help a family in Arkansas pay their immediate bill, as well as enable people to reduce their energy costs over the long term.
There are two main offerings, and they include the Crisis Intervention Program as well as Regular Assistance. These two components offer financial assistance and cash grants to income eligible households with a one-time per year payment to the household's energy supplier or directly to the applicant. Please note that the Arkansas LIHEAP Crisis Intervention Program only provides financial assistance to eligible households facing energy-related emergencies, such as a shut off or if they are running out of fuel.
The Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program, or LIHEAP, can assist lower income, working poor, and senior households. A focus is on applicants with the lowest incomes and who pay a high proportion of their total household income for their home energy bills. Funds can help people maintain a warm, safe, and healthy environment, and this is especially true for households with disabled members, young children, or elderly.
Funding can help low income households paying their heating and cooling bills, and really make their monthly costs more affordable. Grants can help people avoid disconnection of their utility services during the winter, and help them keep their air conditioner on during the hot summer months.
Arkansas does what it can to help low-income, elderly and other struggling people living in poverty. Individuals should not have to choose between heating or cooling their homes and buying food or prescriptions. So call your community action agency to apply.
Save money from free energy conservation and weatherization services. This is another option for low income families, and block grants come from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The program can pay for the installation of energy conservation materials in hundreds of homes per year. The Weatherization Assistance Program provides funds and cash grants to help people conserve energy, and the government program is for low-income people, with emphasis on families with children, senior citizens, the elderly and handicapped.
Materials generally installed into a qualified home include insulation of ceilings, duct sealing, weather-stripping, replacement of broken windows, caulking doors and windows and even health and safety measures can be addressed. Sometimes the program can provide for the replacement of broken doors, or installing storm windows, thermostats and pay for furnace tune-ups. Mobile homes can receive upgrades too. All of these updates can help Arkansas families save money on their utility bills.
While the conditions can change from year to year, in general applicants will need to have Social Security numbers for all household members, Names/birthdates, Verification of residence address (utility bill), Income verification for the previous 3 months, and information on Heating Energy Vendor Name/Account number (utility bill). Call your local community action agency, or dial the Arkansas Department of Human Services at 501-682-1001.
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