Congress Agrees to Emergency Supplemental LIHEAP Funds

By Michael Brady posted 10 days ago

  
After days of discussion and compromise, the U.S. Senate, House and White House have agreed to a supplemental increase of $900 million in Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) funds. These additional funds are part of the historically large $2 trillion stimulus bill called the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act which was passed by the House of Representatives and signed by the President on March 27, 2020, and will be made available to states, territories, tribes and tribal organizations as soon as possible. The final LIHEAP supplement is a compromise reached by the Senate, which had proposed $250 million, and the House, which had proposed $1.4 billion in additional funds. These emergency supplemental funds will remain available for use through September 30, 2021.

APGA fully supports the congressionally authorized LIHEAP amount of $5.1 billion but understands and appreciates the supplemental increase amount. These funds will help elderly and low-income families with their utility bills through the spring and summer months. This is critically important now that some communities are experiencing stay-home orders with elderly consumers especially impacted.

APGA strives to make sure LIHEAP funds are given priority throughout the federal budget process. APGA is a member of the National Energy and Utility Affordability Coalition (NEUAC). NEUAC is a broad-based coalition of diverse member organizations and individuals dedicated to heightening awareness of the energy needs of low-income energy consumers. LIHEAP is a federal block grant program established within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services agency that helps assist families with their energy costs.

For questions on this article, please contact Todd Brady of APGA staff by phone at 202-464-2742 or by email at tbrady@apga.org.
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