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Westar Energy assistance programs.

If you need help paying your Westar Energy bills, then contact the company to set up a payment extension or learn about other federal government or state of Kansas assistance programs such as LIHEAP. Another one of the primary resources available is Project DESERVE.

Payment agreements and/or extensions can be entered into. Individuals who have a past due balance on their Westar Energy account may be qualified. However the account can only be at most 30 days behind. If you are interested in learning more or seeing if you are eligible for a plan, you can log into your account from their website.

Low income and customers who are found to be qualified can also enter into a 12 month payment plan. For entering into this particular form of bill paying assistance program, the customer needs to contact Westar Energy directly to set up the agreement.

Families in Kansas can establish this payment plan under certain conditions. They will need to agree to making some form of payments, including the required amount due on each installment will need to be 1/12 of the total account balance. Then after entering into the program, the amount due each month on your Westar Energy bill will be 1/12 of the account balance plus the current monthly bill. You need to pay the bills on time, and can even prepay the account too. Call (800) 383-1183 for details.

Very low income Westar customers can also contact a community action agency or their social service office to learn about government programs. There is LIHEAP, which will offer either a credit on the account or a cash grant for paying utility bills. The other major one available in Kansas is weatherization. Those homeowners that receive their power from Westar Energy and that have older or less efficient homes can receive minor updates or free energy conservation upgrades from this service.

Westar Energy Project DESERVE

Westar Energy employees, their customers, and the Westar Energy Foundation have all partnered together to create the Project DESERVE Trust Fund. This was formed by both a private and non-profit organization, and assistance is offered for paying electric and other utility costs.





Project DESERVE works from donations from the local community. Funding comes from the above mentioned Westar Energy Foundation, local businesses, employees, and charities as well. Donations are always welcome, and all money contributed is tax deductible.

The program helps families in Kansas who have a special need for assistance. It has been very successful, and other states have even copied the program and how it is established.

Project DESERVE can help certain Kansas families. Households with older adults, which would be people 60 years or older, can get help for paying electric bills. Assistance is also offered for individuals with a disability, as long as the individual meets the requirements that are in place by the Social Security disability requirements. Both of these groups of people may receive help for paying heating, electric, and gas bills. In general you can receive a one-time, up to $300 annual payment/cash grant, and funds are available to Westar Energy customers in Kansas.

A $1 million dollar settlement was also recently given to this program to help fund it. While the exact amount paid out to households can vary, normally eligible households in Kansas may receive one-time cash grant / annual payments of up to $100 as part of the settlement. This money will be applied towards Westar Energy electric bills. The American Red Cross also works with Project DESERVE and it will determine eligibility based on household income and the factors referenced above.




To learn more, or if you think you might be eligible and want to apply for Project DESERVE, please contact Westar Energy at (800) 383-1183 or dial the Kansas United Way service at 21 for details/referrals. Or individuals can apply in person. When calling also be sure to inquire into the LIHEAP federal government energy assistance program.

Applications can also be picked up at the local Red Cross office in Reno County Kansas. They also need to be returned to the Wichita Red Cross office. The applications need to be returned during the first few days of the month.


By Jon McNamara


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