Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program opens Nov. 2

The Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program administered by the Georgia Division of Family and Children Services opens to homebound and elderly households on Monday, Nov. 2. Homebound households are defined as those households in which every household member is confined to the home because of medical conditions or disabilities. Elderly households are defined as those households in which every member is aged 65 years or older (if anyone in the household is under age 18 and all the other household members are 65 or older, that household will meet the definition of elderly).

All households participating in the program must meet the income criteria; be responsible for paying the cost of energy for home heating directly to the supplier; and be U.S. citizens or aliens admitted to the U.S. for lawful, permanent residence.

To apply, applicants must send in their most recent gas bill (if primary heat), electric bill, proof of all household income, proof of valid Social Security Number, proof of citizenship with a valid picture identification and/or alien status. In addition, elderly households must provide proof of age for all household members (picture identification/driver’s license for adults and birth certificates for children).

All Community Service Centers are closed to the public because of COVID-19. To apply for assistance, you must call the service center in your county to receive instructions on how to submit your documents for your application. In Whitfield County, call (706) 226-7241. In Murray County, call (706) 695-5913.

Assistance will be in the form of a one-time payment on behalf of the eligible household to help offset the cost of heating their homes. Checks are issued directly to the home energy supplier. No checks can be issued until North Georgia Community Action Inc. receives the funds from the State of Georgia Department of Human Services. Assistance is on a first-come, first-served basis, while the funds last.

Any low-income residents who feel that their household meets the definition of "homebound" or "elderly" should contact the North Georgia Community Service Center in their county of residence beginning Nov. 2 at 8:30 a.m. There is only one phone line; please be patient and keep calling. Homebound/elderly priority is for the entire month of November, ending Nov. 30. You may call any work day during the month of November to add your name to the list. Do not leave messages as they will not be returned.

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