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Funding available for energy assistance


Housing — Wait list is open for applications, assistance for low-income families energy costs

Every year the federal government provides funding for the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP). This year Yamhill County is expected to receive more than $360,000 to provide bill assistance for low-income households.

Shalynn Rotondi, emergency assistance coordinator for Yamhill Community Action Partnership (YCAP), said the wait list opened Dec. 2 and applications will be accepted until funding runs out.

“Every few days or so we pull 30 or so applications and send them out,” Rotondi said.

To apply, households must meet low-income requirements. For example, a family of four cannot have a gross monthly income more than $3,478. If residents meet this requirement, they can apply through YCAP or complete a LIHEAP application.

Last year, the average payment was $290. Rotondi said she expects this year to be similar, but there are a lot of factors that determine payment size.

“Payments vary so much from $150 to $515, depending on what’s going on with the household,” she said.

Assistance can be used for electricity, propane, natural gas, heating oil, pellets or firewood.

Funding is also available for emergency heating system repairs, but it needs to be a “no heat” situation.

“It’s based on information, because many think it’s a no heat situation but a lot of times even if the furnace has stopped working they are still running on emergency heat, so it’s not a no heat situation,” she said.

She said they expect to serve an additional 800 households from December on, bringing the total to 1,200 overall.

To request more information or apply, call 1-503-472-0457, ext. 1480, or visit the YCAP office.