Energy assistance program to begin

Chad Frey
Butler County Times Gazette
The Low-Income Energy Assistance Program will launch Jan. 4.

With winter arriving, an assistance program to assist with heat bills comes alongside it. The Low-Income Energy Assistance Program will launch Jan. 4. 

“Winters in Kansas have the likelihood of bringing frigid temperatures, add in the financial pressures of the pandemic, it’s especially important this year that families have access to this important service to avoid financial concerns,” said Department for Children and Families Secretary Laura Howard. “Our staff is prepared to begin processing LIEAP applications, so families have warm homes this winter season.”

LIEAP provides an annual benefit to help qualifying households pay winter heating bills. Persons with disabilities, older adults and families with children are the primary groups assisted. In 2020, about 34,000 households received an average benefit of $960.  

“During the cold winter months, it is important that all Kansans have access to the resources they need to heat their homes and ensure their families can stay safe and healthy,” said Gov. Laura Kelly. “I encourage all those who qualify to apply for this program. My administration is committed to protecting Kansas families now, throughout the pandemic, and into the future.”

To qualify, applicants must be responsible for direct payment of their heating bills. Income eligibility requirements are set at 130% of the federal poverty level. The level of benefit varies according to household income, number of people living in the home, type of residence, type of heating fuel and utility rates.  

Applicants need to have made payments on their heating bill two out of the last three months. Those payments must be equal to or exceed $80 or the total balance due on their energy bills, whichever is less. 

Applications for the program have been mailed to households that received energy assistance last year. LIEAP applications are also available at local DCF offices and through partnering agencies starting Jan. 4. They can be requested by calling 1-800-432-0043. To apply online, visit https://cssp.kees.ks.gov/apspssp/sspNonMed.portal. For more information, visit http://www.dcf.ks.gov/services/ees/Pages/EnergyAssistance.aspx.

Applications will be accepted from Jan. 4 to March 31. 

Income eligibility determination begin at $1,383 maximum gross monthly income for a single person living at an address. For a group of four, the income level is $2,839, and $3,324 for a group of five. Income limits increase by about $486 for each additional person in the household. 

Funding for the Low-Income Energy Assistance program is provided by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Community Service through the Federal Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program.