LIHEAP: Fighting Poverty in Ohio
LIHEAP FY 2014 Funding LIHEAP Income Eligibility Level
175% Federal Poverty Guidelines
LIHEAP FY 2014 Funding
LIHEAP Income Eligibility Level
LIHEAP FY 2013 Benefit
Heating: $292 average
Winter crisis average: $450 regulated utilities, $750 delivered fuels
Summer crisis average: $175 regulated utilities, $250 delivered fuels, AC or fans
LIHEAP Households Served
(Estimate for FY 2013)
LIHEAP Program Dates
State LIHEAP Resources
Ohio’s regulated gas and electric utilities are mandated to participate in the statewide PIPP. Low-income customers who heat with natural gas pay 6 percent of their monthly income or $10 (whichever is greater) to their gas or electric company. Customers with all-electric homes pay $10 or 10 percent of their gross monthly household income each month, whichever is greater. Zero-income customers are required to pay a $10 minimum monthly payment for both natural gas and electric. When PIPP Plus payments are made on time and in full, customers earn an incentive credit and an arrearage credit. Each time they pay their required monthly payment on time and in full, they no longer owe the rest of that month’s billed amount. They also receive a one-twenty-fourth credit toward any old debt. If they make full, on-time payments for 24 months straight, all of the arrearages would be eliminated. Eligibility: must receive primary or secondary heat source from a company regulated by the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio, total household income must be 150 percent FPG or below, and, if eligible, must apply for all energy assistance programs. PIPP is administered by the Ohio Department of Development’s HEAP (or LIHEAP) office. Call 1-800-282-0880 (Ohio HEAP), contact local community action agencies, or contact County Job and Family Services Agencies.
Winter Reconnect Program
Allows residential customers of regulated utilities that have been disconnected or are threatened with disconnection due to non-payment of a utility bill to have service restored by paying either the total amount they owe or $175, whichever is less, plus a reconnection fee of no more than $36. The Winter Reconnect Order may be used once during each heating season, which runs from mid-October through mid-April. There is no income eligibility requirement for the Winter Reconnect Program. Income-eligible households can use Emergency Home Energy Assistance Program (E-HEAP) funds for the $175 payment. No signup is required. If service has been disconnected for non-payment or is being threatened with disconnection, the customer must pay the required fees to the utility company and follow the company’s procedures to get reconnected. If paying at an authorized agent, the customer will also need to call the utility with the receipt number to report the payment.
The Electric Partnership Program (EPP) was provided for under Ohio’s 1999 electric restructuring legislation and is funded by the electric universal service rider. Its goal is to reduce electric consumption by households that participate in the state’s Percentage of Income Payment Plan (PIPP). The program is targeted to high consumption, high arrears PIPP households and is composed of two types of programs:
- A baseload efficiency program which audits lighting, appliances and all other uses of electricity not related to heating and installs appropriate measures; and,
- A weatherization program for those who heat with electricity and who have moderate to high usage. This program adds insulation, performs heating system inspections and addresses health & safety measures.
The EPP began operations in March 2002 and is administered by the Ohio Office of Energy Efficiency. Contact USFMail@odod.state.oh.us for more information.
In addition to programs offered by electric utilities through EPP, gas utilities also provide energy efficiency programs. LIHEAP funds transferred to the Ohio Office of Energy Efficiency are matched with utility funds to allow local providers to serve more households.
Ohio Utilities with Low-Income Rate Assistance
Utility Fuel Fund: This fund offers a one-time assistance payment of up to $250 per heating season to maintain or restore service. Customers do not need to be disconnected or facing disconnection to qualify.
- Lucas County: Economic Opportunity Planning Association of Greater Toledo Inc. (EOPA), 866-504-7392
- Wood, Seneca, Ottawa and Sandusky counties: WSOS Community Action Commission Inc., 419-334-8911
- Columbia Customer Contact Center, 1-800-344-4077
Dayton Power & Light
Percentage of Income Payment Plan Credit Program: Customers who have been on the PIPP program for one year and have more than 12 months PIPP arrears may be eligible for PIPP credits. The amount of credit is based on the total 12 months arrears. This credit is applied to the outstanding balance and not to the current installment.
Fresh Start: An arrearage-crediting program for customers no longer on PIPP.
Ohio Gas Residential Low Income Pilot Program: Duke Energy Ohio is launching a new pilot program to help low-income residents save money on the cost of natural gas service. Customers who are at or below 175% of the federal poverty guideline, are not enrolled in the PIPP and who use less than 900 ccf of natural gas annually are eligible for the program. The first 10,000 customers to enroll will receive a $4 monthly credit to offset rate increases. Customers who have been part of the Home Energy Assistance Program in the past year have been automatically enrolled in the pilot program. Other customers who are eligible can enroll by filling out a self-verification form available at Duke’s customer service office at 644 Linn Street in Cincinnati or at your local Community Action Agency. An application is also available on Duke’s website. Call Duke Energy at (513) 421-9500, or from a toll area call (800) 544-6900. Persons who have a hearing impairment may call the TDD/TYY toll free number (800) 752-6254.
Ohio Electric Residential Low Income Pilot Program: Provides assistance to low-income electric customers by making lower rates available to eligible customers. Customers who are at or below 200% of the federal poverty guideline and are not enrolled in the PIPP are eligible for the program. An application is available on Duke Energy’s website and at Duke’s customer service office at 644 Linn Street in Cincinnati or at your local Community Action Agency. Call Duke Energy at (513) 421-9500, or from a toll area call (800) 544-6900. Persons who have a hearing impairment may call the TDD/TYY toll free number (800) 752-6254.
Ohio Utilities with Low-Income Energy Efficiency Resources
American Electric Power
gridSMART Community Assistance: Customers living on low or fixed incomes may be eligible to receive weatherization assistance or repair services. You may be eligible for this program if you are enrolled in the Percentage of Income Payment Plan (PIPP), Home Weatherization Assistance Program (HWAP), or Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP) and your gross income is at or below 200 percent of the Federal Poverty Income Guidelines. Energy efficiency measures may include: home energy assessment, attic and wall insulation, air sealing, CFLs, refrigerator replacement or other energy-saving improvements. Contact your local community-based agency to apply or contact AEP Ohio at 1-800-672-2231 for more information.
Warm Choice: Weatherization measures include insulation, air sealing and high-efficiency furnaces. Homeowners and renters whose income is 150% or less of federal poverty guidelines are eligible. To apply for WarmChoice benefits, call the WarmChoice toll free number at 1-800-952-3037 to be directed to your local provider.
Dominion East Ohio
Housewarming Program: Provides weatherization assistance to help eligible customers reduce their energy usage. The program provides free weather-stripping, attic and sidewall insulation, door sweeps and other insulation devices. Client education is also part of the Housewarming Program to educate consumers on ways to reduce consumption effectively. For information, call 1-888-377-3774.
Income-qualified customers receive a furnace or heat pump clean and tune, energy-efficient light bulbs, energy-saving tips and if needed, a hot water heater wrap, weather stripping and pipe wrap. Depending on the condition of your home and its energy usage, other services may include duct sealing, wall and attic insulation and other air leakage sealing measures. For additional information, call People Working Cooperatively at 513-351-7921 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org and reference this program.
TEEM: Qualifying households can receive energy efficiency measures in their home at no cost. Improvements, such as upgrading insulation or installing a new natural gas furnace, are made by a team of energy efficiency professionals from the Community Action Partnership of the Greater Dayton Area. Households with income at 300 percent of poverty or less are eligible for the program. Call 1-800-617-2673 to see if you qualify.
State utility resource information provided by the LIHEAP Clearinghouse, a service of the U.S. Department of Heath and Human Services, Administration for Children and Families.