Gillibrand to call for more funding to help New Yorkers pay heat bills

NY News

FILE- In this June 15, 2018, file photo, twenty dollar bills are counted in North Andover, Mass. (AP Photo/Elise Amendola, File)

ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, Albany Mayor Kathy Sheehan and Executive Director of the Albany Housing Authority Chiquita D’Arbeau will stand in Lincoln Park in Albany to call for “robust” Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) funding in the next coronavirus relief package. The three hope this funding will provide critical assistance for low-income households and seniors.

“Within the last year, the economic crisis caused by the coronavirus pandemic has put an unprecedented financial burden on New Yorkers,” said Gillibrand’s office. “Millions of New Yorkers are finding it more difficult to afford the cost of keeping the heat turned on in their homes during the cold winter months.”

According to the National Energy Assistance Directors’ Association, one in five homes in the country is at least 60 days behind on the electric and gas utilities. While the CARES Act dedicated $900 million in emergency LIHEAP funding last year, state energy officials estimate significant emergency supplemental funding is needed to help financially strained households pay their energy bills and stay safe throughout the winter. 

Gillibrand’s office says 94% of Albany Housing Authority residents qualify for the LIHEAP program. The three will be at the Lincoln Park Pool House on Friday, Feb. 19 at 9:15 a.m.

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