Buffalo and Erie County heating bill assistance programs.

Customers faced with disconnection or who are behind on their heating bills, and who live in the Buffalo New York region, have assistance programs and resources available to them. Some of the resources include government aid such as HEAP while others are made available by New York State Electric and Gas orother companies. A number of non-profit agencies in Buffalo or Erie County can also help struggling households with their winter heating costs.

The main government program is regular HEAP. It provides assistance for paying your heating bills and your main fuel source during the winter. So if you use natural gas, electricity, wood, or oil, financial aid may be offered for those services as well. There are no restrictions in place on the heating source used by the family.

While funding varies from year to year, people can usually receive up to $700 in assistance. Many energy companies, including New York State Electric and Gas as well as National Fuel, will provide help in the form of a credit on your bill. It is run from a social service office at 478 Main Street, 1st Floor, Buffalo New York 14202. Dial (716) 858-7870 for intake.

The Heating Equipment Repair/Replacement program can help those Buffalo families who qualify for HEAP. If your main heating system is broken, then this government resource can help pay for the repairs of it, or even the replacement, so a new unit. Grants from this program, known as HERR, can pay for a boiler, furnace, or other heating unit.

If you are out of fuel, have had your power turned off, or are close to it, then Emergency HEAP may be your best option. Applicants with a shut off notice from NYSEG or another energy provider, or who have a low supply of fuel, may benefit. This crisis component is available for people with no other options, and who have not had success in applying for other Buffalo area heating assistance programs.

National Fuel Gas Company as well as New York State Electric and Gas offers assistance to its low income and working poor customers as well. They include Empower New York, which is an energy conservation resource. Another option is the Energy Assistance Program, which may have more direct financial assistance or utility disconnection services. (888) 315-1755.





Non-profit agencies and services in Buffalo

The Erie County agencies listed below will try to answer questions on what resources are available. In some cases they may help a family apply for heating bill assistance, or direct the resident to a place to turn to. There are offices across Buffalo and the suburban areas of the county as well.

Amherst Satellite Office and School Intervention Service, 3982 Main Street, Amherst New York 14226 (716) 839-4066. This agency can refer residents of east Buffalo, Clarence, Amherst and zip codes of 14226, 14068, 14221, 14228, 14264 to a number of resources for energy and heating bills.

Bridging Hearts Grant - WNY Heroes Inc., 2809 Wehrle Drive, Suite 8, Williamsville NY 14221 (716) 630-5020.

Catholic Charities is one of the leading agencies to call for help with heating bills in Erie County. They have several offices around the Buffalo region, including these.

Cheektowaga Office, 3719 Union Road, Suite 214, Cheektowaga New York 14225 (716) 681-7394. Helps families in Erie County including Lancaster, Depew, Alden, and of course the Town of Cheektowaga.

East Side Office is located at 188 Oakmont Avenue. Phone (716) 835-6894

Fulton St Brigid Pantry can be reached at (716) 853-4456. Covers zip code of 14204.

Hamburg Satellite Office is based out of 40 Main Street. Telephone (716) 648-6515

Housing and Supportive Service Family Focus, 128 Wilson Street, Buffalo New York 14212, (716) 896-6388

Kenmore Tonawanda Office. Address is 3370 Delaware Avenue. (716) 877-8822

Our Kids Parent Education Awareness Program, 1581 Bailey Avenue, Buffalo NY 14212. Phone (716) 896-6390





West Side Family Counseling Center, 412 Niagara Street, (716) 854-3622.

American Red Cross offers disaster and emergency aid to western New York and Erie County. (716) 299-0900. They also run a HIV/AIDS Services Department.

Lackawanna Family Counseling & School Intervention, 33 Wilkesbarre Avenue. Call (716) 822-6877

Salvation Army offers the Neighbor For Neighbor Heat Fund in Erie County and the city of Buffalo. It relies heavily on donations, and can provide emergency heating bill assistance, referrals, and support. Call (716) 883-9800. Another Corp center is at 46 Broad Street, Tonawanda NY 14151 (716) 693-3110. Find more resources that offer assistance with electric bills.

Old First Ward Community Association, 62 Republic Street, Buffalo NY 14204. Dial (716) 856-8613

PUSH Green covers limited neighborhoods in the region. 456 Massachusetts Avenue, Buffalo New York 14213, (716) 886-1780.




By Jon McNamara

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