Assistance is available for Flagler County residents experiencing a heating emergency through the Emergency Home Energy Assistance Program.
Eligibility is determined by income (gross household income must be below 150 percent of the federal poverty guidelines), and at least one member of the household must be at least 60 years old. Those who qualify may receive one benefit for a maximum of $600 for the heating season.
The program is federally funded but administered by the state through the Department of Elderly Affairs (which, oddly, does not acknowledge that the money originates at the federal level), then through county governments. Flagler County has received grants of between #13,500 and $16,400 a year for the program in the past four years, so the funds are limited on a first-come, first-served basis.
“These funds are intended to make payments to utility companies or fuel suppliers, to make repairs to heating equipment or to resolve other heating emergencies,” said Joe Mayer, community services director in a release the county administration issued earlier this month.
A home heating crisis exists when one or more of the following conditions apply: the home heating energy source has been cut off; notification has been received that the energy source will be cut off; delinquent or past due energy notification has been received; delivery of heating fuel is unavailable, out or in danger or running out; or, there has been a problem such as a lack of a usable heating source.
Eligibility processing is by appointment only and requires proper documentation, such as gross income and family size among other factors. To arrange an appointment, call Flagler County Social Services Senior Services Division at 386/586-2324, ext. 304.