A home energy assistance program is available for residents in Mercer County

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Residents in Mercer County that are in need of home energy assistance can apply for help through a state program operated by the county.

The Low Income Energy Assistance Program (LIEAP) helps very low-income residents with heating and cooling bills. The county operates this program through the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs.

“For many households, winter brings worry about the cost of heating and other energy bills,” Mercer County executive Brian Hughes said. “As this year’s program gets under way, I also urge our residents to look into simple ways they can reduce their energy costs such as using fluorescent light bulbs and weather-stripping doors and windows.”

The application period for this program will be available until Aug. 31, 2020.

Mercer County residents eligible for the program can receive assistance this winter for heating bills.

The amount of the LIEAP heating benefit is determined by income, household size, fuel type and heating region.

Individuals and families that are struggling can apply for assistance, but must meet various income qualifications.

According to county officials, to be eligible for LIHEAP benefits, those who apply must be responsible for home heating or cooling costs, either directly or included in the rent and have gross income at or below 200% of the federal poverty level.

Throughout the week residents can apply in person at the McDade Administration Building in Trenton or by mail.

State officials said that individuals applying for LIEAP are also applying to the United Service Fund. The United Service Fund is another benefit program for New Jersey residents.

The United Service Fund is a program created by the state to help make natural gas and electric bills more affordable for low-income households, according to officials.

For more information about the program, visit www.mercercounty.org and the DCA website at www.nj.gov.com.