LIHEAP News Wrap-Up - Pt. 2

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Coming out of a winter freeze across the Midwest, hard-hit households across rural and urban Indiana were battling post-winter heating bill pile-ups, with utilities thankfully stepping up to do their part in the form of working with delinquent customers to keep the electricity on. NIPSCO communications and external affairs V.P. Jennifer Montague assuring the concerned public that “keeping customers connected and ensuring they are safe and warm is essential.  Regardless of a customer’s income, we offer a number of programs that can be utilized to help those who may find themselves falling behind on their energy bills.”

In the Upper Midwest, both Minnesota and North Dakota were grateful for the shelter of LIHEAP during winter storms where vulnerable residents like 60-year-old Marvel Von Hagen faced watching her husband’s sky-rocketing medical bills eat through their savings as his condition worsened, “we gave up what we thought was important in life, then you find out what really is important.  When you have to make a decision between eating or paying the electric bill … I don’t know how to explain it.  It’s really hard to say, ‘OK, I need help,’ but it was getting to the point that I was going to lose the house.  It can happen to anyone.” 

 

Down South, Kentucky’s 23 Community Action Agencies around the state were teaming up to put out the word that “each year, the Community Action Kentucky Partnership provides heating assistance to over 100,000 Kentucky families through LIHEAP. We encourage qualified applicants to check with their local Community Action Agency as soon as possible to secure available funding,” adding that to address the concern of Kentuckians facing disconnect notices, “we are happy to be able to extend the enrollment period for the LIHEAP Crisis Component, giving those struggling to pay their heating bills more time to access these critical funds.”