The Low-income Energy Assistance Program (LEAP) will be available for eligible households starting Nov. 1 and will run through April 30, 2015. Qualifying households may receive assistance to pay a portion of their home heating bill.
For the 2014/2015 heating season, Eagle, Garfield and Pitkin Counties have again contracted with Goodwill Industries of Southern and Western Colorado to administer the program. “By contracting with Goodwill over the past several years, households needing assistance received their benefits faster and at a lower cost to the county,” said Kathleen Lyons, Economic Services Director for Eagle and Pitkin County. “We’re excited to be able to continue this partnership again this LEAP season.”
Households may qualify for LEAP assistance if anyone within the home is a U.S. citizen or legal permanent resident; heating costs are paid directly to an energy provider or is included in the rent; and gross monthly household income is within income guidelines. The maximum gross monthly household income limit of 150 percent of the Federal Poverty Guidelines, based on number of household members, is as follows:
Household Size Monthly Income – 150% of FPG
Each qualified household may receive only one LEAP benefit for the winter season. In addition to income, factors such as type of heat being used, type of dwelling and number of people in the household are considered before an amount is awarded to an applicant. Funds for home heating system repairs may also be available.
Applications for LEAP may be picked up from any Eagle, Garfield or Pitkin County Health & Human Services location in Aspen, Avon, Eagle, El Jebel, Glenwood Springs and Rifle. To request an application by mail or for more information on LEAP and other available resources, call Discover Goodwill at 1-888-775-5327 or Heat Help at 1-866-432-8435.
An additional resource for those struggling with high heat bills is the Governor’s Energy Office Energy Management Program, also known as the Weatherization Program. The program is available to assist low- and moderate-income households to reduce their heating costs through services such as insulation, caulking and weather-stripping, as well as the installation of new storm windows and new energy-efficient furnaces and refrigerators.
Those who qualify for LEAP, Temporary Aid to Needy Families (TANF), Old Age Pension (OAP) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) automatically qualify for these weatherization services. For more information, call 1-800-332-3669 or visit www.nwccog.org and click on “Weatherization Program.”