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Low Income Energy Assistance Program (LIEAP) News

May 6, 2013

The Low Income Energy Assistance Program (LIEAP) is one component of the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) block grant program in which States (including territories and Indian tribes) design their own programs within very broad Federal guidelines. The objectives of LIEAP are to help low-income people meet the costs of home energy, defined as heating of residences, and to increase their energy self-sufficiency and reduce their vulnerability resulting from energy needs. The target population is low-income households, especially those with the lowest incomes and the highest home energy costs or needs in relation to income, taking into account family size. Additional targets are low-income households with members who are especially vulnerable, including the elderly, persons with disabilities, and young children.

LIEAP provides a one-time vendor payment to help eligible families pay their heating expenses.  As an effort to address the heating needs of persons 60 and above and individuals who are disabled the first two months of LEIAP focuses on the aforementioned target populations. 

To ensure that elderly and disabled persons were made aware of LIEAP, and had access to the program, the Community Resource Division, in collaboration with Services for Adults Division and the Economic Services Division, developed and implemented  key operational efforts to better ensure awareness and access of the LIEAP for elderly and disabled persons and they are as follows:

  • Congregate Meal out Reach: The congregate meal program provides hot, nutritious meals to seniors at sites throughout Mecklenburg County. Social Workers assisted LIEAP Congregate Meal participants with completing LIEAP applications.
  • The Customer Connection Call Center: The Call Center triaged phone calls and routed calls of elderly and disabled persons to Social Workers who would follow-up with client inquiries.
  • Community out Reach: LIEAP coordinated 4 strategic registration events for the purpose of exposing and providing seniors and disabled with access to the LIEAP.  The following locations are representing sites in which LIEAP staff conducted community outreach.
    • Hickory Place Apartments: Hickory Place Apartments is an assisted living facility. LIEAP staff registered 25 person at this site through it’s out-reach efforts.
    • Fair Market Plaza Apartments: Fair Market Plaza Apartments is an assisted living facility... LIEAP staff registered 75 person at this site through it’s out-reach efforts.
    • Anita Stroud Seniors Apartments: Anita Stroud Apartments is an assisted living facility. LIEAP staff registered 30 person as this site through its out-reach effort.

As CRD begins to plan for the administering in the future, special attention will be given to ensure that the most vulnerable citizens of Mecklenburg County, seniors and the disabled have access to LIEAP benefits.

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