With the deep cold in the North Country finally retreating, more than $50 million in federal money coming for New York’s Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program “is a lifeline for New Yorkers who rely on it so they can stay warm this winter,” said U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand in announcing the funding.
The money is part of the 2014 omnibus appropriations bill that passed Congress and was signed by the president earlier this month.
More than one million New Yorkers rely on LIHEAP to heat their homes during the winter, Gillibrand said.
Sen. Gillibrand sent a letter in October to U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Kathleen Sebelius urging her to release LIHEAP funds as quickly and at as high a level as possible. Without the federal resources, households nationwide may have been subject to cuts in federal heating aid during the remaining winter months, she said.
LIHEAP is the main federal program that helps low-income households and seniors with their energy bills, providing vital assistance during both the cold winter and hot summer months.