The time when low-income households in Brown, Monroe, Morgan and Owen counties may apply for assistance with winter energy costs is almost here.
The South Central Community Action Program (SCCAP) will begin accepting applications on Nov. 2 for assistance with winter heating and the purchase of bulk fuel.
Each household applying for the Energy Assistance Program will need to provide income documentation for the past 12 months for all household members ages 18 and older, current heat and electric bills, social security cards and a landlord affidavit form for those who rent. Applications and other program materials are available on the Energy Assistance page at http://www.insccap.org/pages/energy.
One policy change that applicants should be aware of this year is that SCCAP will only be accepting fully completed applications, including all required documentation. This will help to eliminate delays in processing by having a complete file that is ready to be processed rather than having to wait for necessary forms to be brought in at a later time.
“We’ve worked to make the program as efficient and customer friendly as we can,” SCCAP Energy Assistance & Family Development Program Manager Thomas Hartnett said. “This change may seem inconvenient to some at first, but it ultimately will result in improved efficiency and better service for those who are most in need of this benefit.”
SCCAP has received an initial allocation of $689,522 in federal funding from the Indiana Housing and Community Development Authority (IHCDA) for energy assistance this winter. Last year, SCCAP served more than 3,400 households.
Eligibility for the Energy Assistance program is based on gross household income -- household size- maximum annual income: 1-$17,655; 2-$23,895; 3-$30,135; 4-$36,375; 5-$42,615.
The purpose of the Energy Assistance Program is to help keep members of low-income families safe and healthy, and assist them in achieving energy self-sufficiency and avoiding utility disruptions.Customers are encouraged to control energy costs and identify strategies which allow them to pay their future energy bills. SCCAP will offer its energy education workshop for those who want to participate. Participants will receive information on staying warm while reducing utility costs.
For additional information about energy assistance, the public should call one of the following offices: Monroe County, 812-339-3447; Brown County, 812-988-6636; Morgan County, 812-342-1518; Owen County, 812-829-2279. Offices are located at 746 Memorial Drive in Nashville, 1500 W. 15th Street in Bloomington, 159 W. Morgan Street in Martinsville and 145 N. Harrison Street in Spencer.
SCCAP is also seeking applicants for its Weatherization Program. The Weatherization Program reduces energy consumption in low-income households and insures that each client has a safe, operating heat source. Each client receives a furnace inspection and an energy audit. SCCAP uses private contractors to repair or replace heat sources, install insulation and seal the homes. The program is federally funded and is free to participants in Brown, Monroe, Morgan and Owen counties.
To be eligible to have your owner-occupied or rental home weatherized, your household income must not exceed federal poverty guidelines. To apply, call 812-339-3447, ext. 224.
SCCAP is a nonprofit organization that provides opportunities for low-income citizens to move toward personal and economic independence. Its programs include Affordable Rental Housing, Energy Assistance and Education, Family Development, Growing Opportunities job training, Head Start, Individual Development Accounts, Section 8 Housing, Thriving Connections and Weatherization.