Heating Assistance

On the heels of one of the coldest Februaries on record, New York State is now taking applications from those who need a second emergency benefit from the heating assistance program.

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Vermont Democrat Peter Welch and New York Republican Peter King are leading a group of House members calling for increased federal heating assistance funding.

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U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer says federal authorities are releasing $50.6 million more to provide home heating aid to New Yorkers.

Families whose incomes are 150 percent of the federal poverty level or lower are eligible for heating aid.

Schumer says the release for the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program, which he requested in January, should provide critical relief to needy residents and senior citizens during a stretch of especially cold weather.

The Department of Health and Human Services is releasing $454 million nationwide.

© 2014 AP

Advocates for low-income families in Massachusetts are calling on the state and federal governments to increase funding for fuel assistance programs in the shadow of sequestration.

In a few short days, members of Congress must vote to avoid the series of across-the-board spending cuts known as sequestration, but if not; many programs that benefit the neediest families will have their budgets slashed mid-year.

Vermont’s governor is requesting additional funding to a low income heating program at the same time they are changing how benefits are paid.

The federal government has allocated just over 19-and-a-half million dollars to Vermont for this year’s Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program.  Governor Shumlin said he will go before the Legislature's Emergency Board next week to ask for approval  to add $8.8 million in state funds to the program. Central Vermont Council on Aging Executive Director Beth Stern.