Many Kansas residents are seeing a significant increase in their utility bills this winter. This spike in energy costs has left many unable to pay their utility bills.
The Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP), called LIEAP in Kansas, provides assistance to people with low, moderate and fixed incomes to pay their utility bills. The program has seen its funding doubled by Congress, but many eligible customers are not aware of this assistance option.
“For many Kansans with low or fixed incomes, heating/cooling a home can be a significant strain on their monthly budget, and the high cost of energy has made it even worse this season,” said AARP Kansas State Director Glenda DuBoise. “Now is the time to make sure individuals and families who need this assistance can get it. We encourage all eligible residents to apply for the Kansas Low Income Energy Assistance Program (LIEAP) as soon as possible.”
According to the Kansas Department for Children and Families (DCF), the 2023 LIEAP application period runs from Tuesday, January 3, 2023, through Friday, March 31, 2023. Applications must be received prior to 5:00 PM, March 31, 2023. Apply online through the DCF Self-Service Portal
Kansas has ample LIEAP funding available for eligible residents. With so many people having accumulated debt during the pandemic, compounded with inflation, this program could be a lifeline for those with utility bills they cannot afford to pay.
Kansans should also check with their local utility companies about special discount rates for income qualified customers, setting up a payment plan, and enrollment in energy efficiency and weatherization audit programs (to help you save money by reducing your energy usage).
Also something to note, from now until March 31, the Kansas Cold Weather Rule remains in effect. The Cold Weather Rule helps ensure you will have electric, gas, and water service for your home during the winter. But you must make pay arrangements with your utility to use the Rule.
Under the Cold Weather Rule, a utility can't disconnect you when the temperature is forecasted to drop below 35 degrees Fahrenheit within the following 48-hour period, except in certain circumstances. Be sure to check out the requirements of the Rule HERE. You can also call your utility company or the Kansas Corporation Commission at (800) 662-0027.
For more information on utility and weatherization related assistance programs,
visit the Kansas Corporation Commission website.
This story is provided by AARP Kansas. Visit the AARP Kansas page for more news, events, and programs affecting retirement, health care, and more.
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