West Virginia electric bill assistance programs just got sweeter. The Dollar Energy Fund, which has operated since 1983 in Pennsylvania, is now available in West Virginia. The Dollar Energy Fund provides much needed aid to lower income families struggling to make their electric bill payments each month.
To qualify for benefits from the Dollar Energy Fund, your household must earn less than 150% of the federal poverty level. You must also show that you have tried in good faith to keep up with your power bills. The Salvation Army is accepting applications from deserving families. This charitable service is also called the West Virginia Utility Assistance Program.
Even greater benefits are provided though your local Department of Health and Human Resources (DHHR) office. DHHR administers federal dollars from the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP). LIHEAP provides much needed monthly help during the cold winter months to help offset high energy costs. While annual funding levels may fluctuate, a maximum household benefit of $800 per year has been relatively stable.
Your benefits can come in one of two forms. First, you may qualify for emergency assistance if you have received an emergency cut off notice. Second, you could receive monthly amounts that are used to reduce your overall electricity bill. Both cash grants are paid directly to your utility company, which will in turn credit your account.
To apply for benefits, you may complete an application at your local DHHS office. You may also call 1-800-642-8589 or complete an application online.
An in person visit is normally required if you need emergency help to avoid a shut off. Otherwise, your online application could bring heat to your home.
If anyone in your household is already receiving public assistance, then you may qualify for a 20% discount through the Special Reduced Residential Service Rate Program. Also, don’t forget to inquire about special weatherization help if you own your own home.
West Virginia electric bill assistance programs generally accept new applications in early December. Of course, emergency assistance is available year round.
Long is a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with a B.A. in Industrial Relations. He subsequently received his Certificate in Nonprofit Management from Duke University. His Certificate in Financial Planning was issued by Florida State University.
Long has achieved the Accredited Credit Counselor and Accredited Financial Counselor certifications through the Association for Financial Counseling, Planning and Education. Long originally achieved the Certified Credit Counselor designation through the National Institute for Financial Education.
In addition to years of nonprofit leadership, Long has been an innovator in the field of volunteer tax return preparation programs. He assists volunteer associations and nonprofit organizations who seek to integrate credit counseling and asset-building programs with free personal income tax preparation. His approach to using free credit reports as both an incentive and a screening tool for placement into asset-building programs has been shared with members of the National Community Tax Coalition, the EITC-Carolinas Initiative of MDC, Inc. and nonprofit groups across the Carolinas.
Long assists members of our armed forces in the Carolinas, Iowa, Rhode Island, Georgia and Germany with financial readiness. Please support our Soldiers, Marines, Airmen and Sailors!
"The democracy will cease to exist when you take away from those who are willing to work and give to those who would not."