Senator Specter Announces Energy Aid for Pennsylvania
$44 million will Assist Low-Income Families with Heating Costs
Senator Arlen Specter (R-Pa.) today announced that the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has provided $44.287 million to Pennsylvania to assist the Commonwealth's low-income families in paying their heating bills. The funding is administered through the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) which helps eligible families pay the costs of heating and insulating their homes in the winter and cooling their homes in the summer. Pennsylvania's share of the funding represents nearly one-tenth of the $450 million in emergency contingency funds being released today by HHS.
"While this is not the full amount I requested the Department release, I am pleased that the administration has released this funding for low-income families to help pay their heating bills," Specter said. "With the price of oil reaching $100 per barrel and so many Pennsylvanians facing the alternative of heating or eating this winter, the funding comes at a key time."
HHS's announcement comes after Senator Specter and several Senators wrote to President Bush on December 21, 2007 urging the administration to immediately release $586 million in LIHEAP funding. The combination of the nation's high energy costs and severe weather this winter have proved to be a great burden on many low-income families. More than five million low-income households across the country receive assistance through LIHEAP each year.
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