Murkowski Joins Bipartisan Call for Quick Distribution of LIHEAP Assistance

As state agencies prepare to assist low-income homeowners and renters with heating their homes in the upcoming winter months, U.S. Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) joined Senators Susan Collins (R-ME) and Jack Reed (D-RI) in a bipartisan letter urging the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to release funds for the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) quickly at the highest level possible under the current continuing resolution. Forty Senators signed on to the letter to HHS Secretary Alex Azar.

As a member of the U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee, Senator Murkowski fights each year to ensure that the LIHEAP continues to receive adequate funding.

“As the main federal program that helps low-income households and seniors with their energy bills, LIHEAP provides critical assistance during the cold winter and hot summer months. October marks the start of the heating season for many states and low-income families and seniors will be facing additional strains on their household budgets. In addition, millions of low income families, including seniors, are facing new and severe financial hardship due to the coronavirus, making the assistance provided through LIHEAP more important than ever,” the Senators wrote.

LIHEAP is a federally funded program that provides eligible low-income households with help paying a portion of their heating and utility bills.  Eligibility is based on a household’s combined income as well as the number of residents.  In fiscal year 2020, Maine received more than $40 million in LIHEAP funding. 

Low-income families, seniors, and individuals with disabilities can get help paying their winter heating bills by applying for LIHEAP through their local Community Action Agency. Benefit amounts are based on each household’s income level, family size, whether they live in subsidized or non-subsidized housing, and the type of fuel used for heating.

Click HERE to read the full letter.