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Clay County Utility Authority assistance programs.

Customers of Clay County Utility Authority have a few different payment plans and assistance programs available to them. They range from Lend-A-Helping-Hand to federal aid from LIHEAP as well as the Golden Opportunities Plan/Disability Assistance Plan, and each has different application criteria and conditions that need to be met by applicants.

The Disability Assistance - Golden Opportunities Plan provides households more time to pay their bills, in some cases up to 21 days. The main benefit from this Clay County Utility Authority service is to help people manage their budget more effectively, so they can coordinate their income (such as SSI or pension checks) with the timing of when they need to pay their bills to the company.

A major benefit is for those households in Green Cove Springs Florida that are on that type of fixed income. So in order to enroll, the customer needs to be over the age of 62 or have some form of physical or mental disability, and they also need to have a limited income as well. Proof of the disability or age will be required, and Clay County Utility Authority may request other documentation as well from applicants.

Direct financial aid may be offered from Lend-A-Helping-Hand. This uses donations from the community and the money raised can help lower to moderate income families with paying a portion of an overdue utility bill, and it is a crisis only plan. Not only can it help with electric bills and preventing a shut off, but there is also assistance for water or sewer costs and other related utility expenses.

Any assistance from Lend a Hand is only for people with a one time crisis that meet all program terms. The scope of the service is limited, so many applications will need to be denied by the company. A priority is on the elderly, disabled, or families with young children as well, however others can apply if they would like too, including those facing poverty.

Based on funding levels, the county sponsored assistance program only covers a portion of the payment of the current past due Clay County Utility Authority sewer or water bill. At most, a couple hundred dollars is paid out, if the applicant meets all conditions and other criteria in place. This is also run in partnership with non-profits and other organizations in the county, such as the Catholic Charities Bureau.





Government aid is available from LIHEAP, and this will offer a cash grant to very low income families. It is offered nationwide and also the state of Florida also participates and contributes funds to it. There is both assistance for paying bills as well as a component for saving money, and that is known as weatherization. Lastly, crisis LIHEAP can accelerate the application process, so this means that families can be provided the money they need for their bills in less time.

A priority is on Clay County Utility Authority households that have a senior member living in it. There is also a focus on homes with children, a single parent or a disabled person. LIHEAP is wide ranging and can help with a number of needs of struggling families.

There are several other non-profit agencies that the company recommends people call for help in Clay County, and some examples of them include St. Catherine’s Catholic Church Orange Park (call (904) 264-0577), Good Samaritan Ministries (phone (904) 264-2241), or the Salvation Army at (904) 276-6677.

To apply for any of these programs or to learn more, call the Authority at (877) 476-2282. Or residents can dial their local Catholic Charity center or church for applications. There may be referrals to these those resources listed above and others, such as payment plans.

By Jon McNamara











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