HEAT Applicants to See Lower Benefit Payments

SALT LAKE CITY, UT – March 1, 2011 – (RealEstateRama) — Due to federal budget cuts to the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP), Home Energy Assistance Target (HEAT) applicants will receive lower average payments beginning March 2, 2011.

In order to serve as many clients as possible, the State HEAT Benefit payment will be reduced from an average of $510 to an average of $360 per household.

“More than 50,000 households were provided with HEAT Benefits in 2010 and in today’s economic environment we don’t anticipate a decrease in the need for this service,” said Utah Division of Housing and Community Development director Gordon Walker. “In order to serve as many Utahns as possible it was determined that benefit amounts had to be lowered.”

To help Utahns understand the changes to the HEAT program, the Utah Division of Housing and Community Development has developed a fact sheet which contains information on how they can off-set the reduction of their payment.

To qualify for HEAT, a family must earn below 150 percent of the federal poverty level: about $33,000 for a family of four. Priority for H.E.A.T. assistance is given to households with the highest energy burden in relationship to household income while taking into consideration vulnerable populations such as the elderly, disabled and families with young children.

Utahns are encouraged to visit our website at http://housing.utah.gov/seal/offices.html to find their county’s contact information, or to dial 2-1-1.

The H.E.A.T. program is Utah’s version of the federal LIHEAP program (Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program LIHEAP). It is funded 100% by the Federal Government through the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

Utah’s State Energy Assistance and Lifeline Office is managed by the Utah Division of Housing and Community Development under the Utah Department of Community and Culture.

Shad J. West
shadwest (at) utah (dot) gov

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