Kim and DHS secretary highlight beginning of LIHEAP season

HARRISBURG, Nov. 1 – State Rep. Patty Kim, D-Dauphin/Cumberland, joined Department of Human Services Secretary Valerie Arkoosh and representatives from the Public Utility Commission at a news conference at the Tri County Community Action offices in Enola today to highlight the beginning of LIHEAP season.

“As the cold weather sets in, financially vulnerable Pennsylvanians may need assistance paying for heat to ensure the health and welfare of their families,” Kim said. “From young families to seniors on fixed incomes, LIHEAP has been a lifesaver, ensuring that utility companies don’t cut off heat in the dead of winter and put lives at risk. I urge qualifying Pennsylvanians to apply for LIHEAP online through COMPASS or at their local county assistance office.”

The Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program, known as LIHEAP, season began Nov. 1 and provides cash grants to low-income families to help them pay their heating bills. Households in immediate danger of being without heat can also qualify for crisis grants. The cash grant is a one-time payment sent directly to the utility company/fuel provider to be credited on the recipient’s bill. These grants range from $300 to $1,000 based on household size, income and fuel type.

Households experiencing a heating crisis may be eligible for additional benefits through the LIHEAP crisis program. Emergency situations include:

  • Broken heating equipment or leaking lines that must be fixed or replaced.
  • Lack of fuel.
  • The main heating source or second heating source (a source that is used to operate the main heating source or used if the main heating source is not working) has been completely shut off.
  • The danger of being without fuel (less than a 15-day supply).
  • The danger of having utility service terminated (you've received a notice that service will be shut off within the next 60 days).

There are two ways to apply for LIHEAP:

  • Online: Residents can apply for benefits online using COMPASS, the online tool for Pennsylvanians to apply for health and human service programs and manage benefit information.
  • On paper: Residents can download a paper application, print it, fill it out, and return it to your local county assistance office

For more information about LIHEAP, residents should contact their county assistance office, or call the LIHEAP hotline at 1-866-857-7095, which is available Monday through Friday. Individuals with hearing impairments may call 711.

Learn more about LIHEAP here.