Thursday is deadline to enroll in cooling assistance program


LIMA — Thursday is the final day for this year’s Summer Crisis Program, operated under the auspices of the Ohio Development Services Agency and West Ohio CAP. The program provides eligible Ohioans assistance paying an electric bill or assistance paying for central air conditioning repairs.

To apply for the program, customers must schedule an appointment by Thursday with West Ohio Community Acton Partnership by calling 855-286-7559. During the appointment, customers need to bring copies of their most recent energy bill, a list of all household members and proof of income for the last 90 days for each member, proof of citizenship or legal residency, and physician documentation that cooling assistance is needed for a household member’s health (if there isn’t a household member over the age of 60).

The Summer Crisis Program assists low-income households with an older household member (aged 60 or older), or households that can provide physician documentation that cooling assistance is needed for a household member’s health. Conditions can include lung disease, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease or asthma. Eligible households can receive up to $300 if they are a customer of a regulated utility, or $500 if they are a customer of unregulated utilities such as electric cooperatives and municipal utilities. The assistance is applied to their utility bill or applied to central air conditioning repair costs.

Ohioans must have a gross income at or below 175 percent of the federal poverty guidelines to qualify for assistance. For a family of four the annual income must be at or below $43,050.

Ohioans enrolled in the Percentage of Income Payment Plan Plus Program (PIPP Plus) are not eligible for bill payment assistance through the program, but can work with West Ohio CAP to identify other opportunities for assistance. For information about the features of the Summer Crisis Program locally, contact West Ohio CAP at 419-227-2586. Information can also be found at http://energyhelp.ohio.gov or by calling 800-282-0880.

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