DeKALB – Low-income residents of DeKalb County will be able to receive public assistance for paying their utility bills in the wake of last week’s heat wave.
Gov. Pat Quinn announced Tuesday that the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program
(LIHEAP) will be active starting Wednesday and ending July 27, or when all the $10 million in federal funds earmarked for the program are exhausted.
“Temperatures have already reached dangerous levels across the state, and keeping people safe during the heat is my priority,” Quinn said. “We must do everything we can to ensure Illinois’ most vulnerable citizens can remain healthy, safe and cool this summer.”
Nancy Kane-Richards, program director of LIHEAP for Kane and DeKalb counties at Community Contacts in Elgin, said about $54,000 is available to certain residents on a first-come, first-served basis.
“We will get to them as quickly as we can, and we will help people with our grant,” Kane-Richards said.
LIHEAP is a program that helps low-income residents afford their utility bills. Households with incomes of up to 150 percent of the federal poverty level are eligible for it.
For example, a family of four with an annual income of $34,575 or less could qualify for the program.
In addition, the household must include a person older than 60 years old, a child younger than 5 years old, a person with a disability or a person with a medical condition that is affected by the heat.
Kane-Richards said Community Contacts is taking applications for the program by appointment only.
She said DeKalb County residents should call 815-758-3835 between 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m.