Residents can apply for energy cost help beginning Dec. 1
CARTERET COUNTY, NC – Eligible Carteret County families can apply online starting Wednesday for help with energy costs through two programs.
The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services recently announced that households can apply on the North Carolina ePass website for the Low-Income Energy Assistance Program, or LIEAP, and the Crisis Intervention Program, or CIP.
LIEAP provides federal dollars to help low-income households with their immediate heating and other energy needs. Residents do not have to be at risk of disconnection or delinquent to take advantage of this program.
The Department of Social Services will begin taking LIEAP applications on Dec. 1, 2021 for senior citizens aged 60 and older or disabled individuals receiving services through the Division of Aging and Adult Services (DAAS). All other households can apply on Jan. 3, 2022.
Households must meet the following criteria:
- At least one eligible U.S. citizen or legal resident
- Be responsible for the heating cost
- Income at or below 130% of the Federal Poverty Limit
In addition to the application, an interview will be required, and applicants must provide:
- Utility bill
- Social security number
- Proof of income (for example, earned income (wages from a job), child support, social security benefits, self-employment income, unemployment benefits)
If approved, a one-time payment will be made directly to the applicant’s primary heating source utility company. Payments will not be made to the applicant. LIEAP assistance is available through March 31, 2022 or until funds run out.
Also, senior citizens aged 60 and older or disabled individuals receiving services through the Division of Aging and Adult Services (DAAS) who received LIEAP payments in FY2021 are eligible for automatic LIEAP payments. Payments will automatically be credited to the heating utility accounts of eligible households.
Energy assistance available through Carteret County DSS consists of two programs.
In addition to LIEAP, the Crisis Intervention Program (CIP) is also a federally funded program that serves individuals and families who are experiencing a heating (or cooling) related crisis. A household is in a crisis if it is currently experiencing or is in danger of experiencing a life-threatening or health-related emergency and sufficient, timely and appropriate assistance is not available from any other source. Life-threatening is defined as having no heating or cooling source or having a disconnect notice for the household's primary heating or cooling service and the health or well-being of a household member would be in danger if the heating or cooling crisis was not alleviated. CIP begins in July of each year when funding is allocated and continues until the allocation is exhausted or until the end of the fiscal year the following June, whichever comes first.
Applicants can apply online at epass.nc.gov or can submit a paper application through the mail, fax or by dropping it off at the Department of Social Services. Individuals who are homebound or unable to mail or drop off applications can contact DSS at 252-728-3181, option 5 to complete the application by phone. For more information call 252-728-3181, option 5 or apply in person during the applicable times of the year.
To learn more about the Low-Income Energy Assistance Program or Crisis Intervention Program, visit www.carteretcountync.gov/1024/Energy-Assistance-Programs.