Here is a list of some of the programs in Maine that may be able to help with your utility and fuel costs.
2 1 1 Maine
In addition to the programs listed below, there may be other local resources available from organizations such as The Salvation Army, Red Cross, local churches or community organizations. For more information about local energy initiatives in Maine, contact 211Maine. They can be contacted by phone by dialing 211 or on the web at www.211maine.org
Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP or Fuel Assistance)
LIHEAP helps both homeowners and renters with their heating costs. Household income must be lower than 150% of the poverty level. If anyone in the household is over age 60, below age 2, or has a health condition that puts them at risk of hypothermia then the income limit can be higher - 170% of poverty level. (This equals about $2,144 per month for a family of 2.)
If heat is included in your rent, you can still get help. If you apply and get even a little bit of help, then your monthly Food Supplements benefit may go up. If you get LIHEAP then you may also get lower electric rates.
To Apply: You can apply for LIHEAP through your local Community Action Program. You need to bring proof of income, social security numbers, and your address. You can use a utility bill to prove your address.
This program provides limited crisis emergency assistance that can include some help with heat, electricity, food and other emergency circumstances for the residents of Washington and Hancock counties.
Loans are for up to 20 years at 1% interest. Grants (free) may be for people who are 62 years of age or disabled.
Loan/grant combinations may be arranged for applicants who can repay part of the cost. The program defines ‘very low-income’ as below 50 percent of the area median income. See the following for the program’s income guidelines.
To Apply: Call Rural Development. Listed in the Phone Book under U.S. Government, Agriculture Department. Or call 1-800-352-8963 Ext. 161 and they will connect you to the correct office.
Efficiency Maine has a number of programs to help people lower their energy costs. To find out if you can get help, see the Efficiency Maine website, or call (866) 376-2463.
Appliance Replacement Program
Efficiency Maine, the Maine State Housing Authority, and the state’s Community Action Programs are working together on this program. The Energy Efficiency Low Income Appliance Replacement program replaces inefficient refrigerators and other home appliances, and installs energy efficient lighting in the homes of qualified low-income consumers. Community Action Programs deliver the services.
To Apply: For more information, call toll-free (866) 376-2463, or visit Efficiency Maine.
Note: If you live in Cumberland County, Lincoln County, Sagadahoc County, Brunswick, Harpswell, Pownal, or Lincoln, apply to MaineHousing, not your local CAP.