Written on: May 3, 2021 by ICM
Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont has extended the deadline for the Connecticut Energy Assistance Program to Jun. 15 and calls on Connecticut residents who need help paying last winter’s home heating bills to apply.
“The cold weather is behind us, but I want to remind everyone that help is still available to pay home heating bills from this past winter,” Governor Lamont said. “Thanks to the Connecticut Department of Social Services and the dedicated staff of Connecticut’s Community Action Agencies and partners across the state, we are extending the application period on behalf of children, families, seniors, and all of those who need help with heating costs.”
“The Connecticut Energy Assistance Program helps protect tens of thousands of vulnerable Connecticut households from the cold each year,” Department of Social Services Commissioner Deidre S. Gifford said. “It also helps residents who are behind on their utility heating bills avoid the risk of a shutoff.”
Connecticut residents who need help paying their home heating costs are encouraged to apply, regardless of whether their home is heated through electricity, natural gas, or a deliverable fuel. If the household’s primary heat source is electricity or natural gas, the basic benefit award is sent directly to the utility company.
Additional flexibilities are in place to ease the application process, including suspension of the liquid assets test requirement for eligibility.
Fuel deliveries to eligible households have also been extended to May 20, if a household’s primary heat source is a deliverable fuel (oil, kerosene, propane or coal). A retroactive payment or credit to their fuel vendor for deliveries made between Nov. 2, 2020—May 20, 2021, may also be possible up to the amount of the household’s basic benefit award.
Home heating benefits are available for households with incomes up to 60% of the state median income (currently, $37,645 for a single person and $72,394 for a household of four). Payments are issued directly to fuel vendors and utility companies on behalf of eligible households.
The program is administered by the Connecticut Department of Social Services through nine nonprofit Community Action Agencies, which coordinate application and eligibility determination statewide. Nearly 83,000 applications for energy aid have been received so far this program year, with nearly 64,000 households approved for basic benefits of up to $725. Funding for the Connecticut Energy Assistance Program comes from the federal Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program.
Emergency funding is also available to repair or replace unsafe or inoperable heating systems for single-family, owner-occupied homes with incomes up to 60% of the state median income. A heating system must be deemed as unsafe or inoperable by a licensed heating vendor to be considered.
Applicants should contact the Community Action Agency serving their region or partnering intake sites around the state. To find the nearest application site, individuals can call 2-1-1 or visit www.ct.gov/staywarm. In response to the COVID-19 public health emergency, households will also be advised how to complete applications remotely through a mail-in process or over the phone.
Connecticut’s Community Action Agencies include:
Community Action Agency of Western Connecticut, Inc.
Danbury area: 203-748-5422
Stamford area: 203-357-0720
New Opportunities, Inc.
Waterbury area: 203-756-8151
Meriden area: 203-235-0278
Human Resources Agency of New Britain, Inc.
New Britain/Greater Bristol area: 860-356-2000
Community Renewal Team, Inc.
Hartford area: 860-560-5800
Middletown area: 860-347-4465
The ACCESS Agency, Inc.
Willimantic area: 860-450-7400
Danielson area: 860-412-1600
Thames Valley Council for Community Action, Inc.
Norwich area: 860-425-6681
New London area: 860-444-0006
Community Action Agency of New Haven, Inc.
New Haven area: 203-387-7700
Derby/Ansonia area: 203-736-5420
Alliance for Community Empowerment (formerly ABCD)
Bridgeport area: 203-384-6904
Norwalk area: 203-384-6904 ext. 3027