Health

Jefferson County residents who are facing the possibility of having their heat turned off can soon apply for financial assistance through the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program.

Starting on Jan. 6, the Louisville Metro Office of Resilience and Community Services will be open for residents to apply for financial help to keep their lights and heat on.

The program is open to residents with a current utility bill past due and residents who’ve received a disconnect notice to apply for assistance. The income limit is at or below 130 percent of the federal poverty limit, or about $2,790 for a family of four per month.

Research has shown this kind of financial assistance is important to health. For instance, low-income older adults are more likely to face having to choose between groceries and keeping the lights and heating on in the winter or summer. And almost 17 percent of household heads with children under age six make decisions to not seek medical care in order to pay their heat bills.

Residents have to provide paperwork including proof of income, social security cards or government documentation of social security numbers and the current bill that is past due or a disconnection notice.

To apply, residents must schedule an appointment utilizing the automated appointment system at (502) 991-8391. Residents who are home bound can call (502) 780-7937 for help.

LIHEAP, funded through the Department of Health and Human Services via Congress, started in 1981 to help low-income households pay heating and cooling utility bills.