Funds are on their way to help Maine's low income residents heat their homes this winter, as the state is getting a $35.3 million payment from the federal government.

On Wednesday, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services announced the grants through the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program.

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About $1.3 million of the award is being set aside for Maine’s American Indian Tribes. All told, more than $3 billion is being handed out to across the United States.

 

You may be eligible for assistance if your total household income falls within the income eligibility guidelines or 60% of the state area median income, whichever is less. Eligibility for households with incomes between 150% and 170% of the federal poverty guidelines is limited to those households with a member who is susceptible to hypothermia, such as elderly, a child twenty-four months of age or under, or with a doctor's diagnosis.

If your heat is included in your rent, you may still apply for LIHEAP.

Additional help may be available if you have less than a 3-day supply of heating fuel or are in danger of having utility services disconnected and you have no means to pay your energy company.

Deborah Turcotte from the Maine State Housing Authority, which manages the program and distributes the money, says the state hopes to receive a second allocation in February, bringing the total to about $38 million. That’s comparable to last year.