Energy Assistance (EA)
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image of a red square resembling a bullet About Energy Assistance

The EA Program assists low-income households, particularly those with the lowest incomes that pay a high proportion of household income for home energy. It is comprised of four components:

Fuel Assistance — Helps with the cost of heating

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The purpose of Fuel Assistance is to help eligible households with the cost of home heating. It is designed to help offset this expense rather than to pay all of it. This program can also help with furnace re-starts, late charges, delivery charges, installation charges, and connection or re-connection fees.

To be eligible for Fuel Assistance, there are certain income guidelines and living arrangements that must be met. The household must be responsible for paying the heating bill. Local departments of social services accept applications from the second Tuesday in October through the second Friday in November. Applicants should expect notification of their eligibility determination by late-December.

If you suspect Fraud or Abuse of any kind, report it to your Local Department of Social Services or call 1-800-552-3431.

Crisis Assistance — Helps when Fuels assistance and other resources don't meet the need.

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Crisis Assistance is intended for emergency situations. It helps eligible households when Fuel Assistance or other resources cannot meet the need. Some examples of emergencies include: lack of heat, utility cut-off is imminent, and inoperable or unsafe heating equipment. Types of Crisis Assistance may include: payment of utility security deposit; purchase of portable space heater; purchase of primary home heating fuel; payment for emergency shelter; payment of primary heat utility bill; repair of heating equipment; replacement of heating equipment; and/or provision of supplemental heating equipment/maintenance.

To be eligible for Crisis Assistance, there must be a heating emergency and certain income and citizenship criteria must be met. Applications for equipment-related assistance, security deposits and emergency shelter are accepted from Nov. 1 through March 15 at local departments of social services. Assistance for the purchase of heating fuel and utility bills for primary residences are available from the first workday In January through March 15.

If you suspect Fraud or Abuse of any kind, report it to your Local Department of Social Services or call 1-800-552-3431.

Cooling Assistance — Helps with cooling emergencies resulting from extreme heat

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Cooling Assistance provides purchase or repair of cooling equipment and/or payment for electricity to operate cooling equipment. To be eligible, a household must contain at least one vulnerable individual (age 60 or over; disabled; or under age 6) and there must be a cooling need. The following types of assistance are available if the eligibility conditions are met and the assistance will ensure cooling: purchase or replace and install a window air conditioner unit; repair a central air conditioning unit or heat pump; payment of an electric utility security deposit; payment of the electric bill to operate the cooling equipment. Applications are accepted at the local department of social services from June 15 through August 15.

If you suspect Fraud or Abuse of any kind, report it to your Local Department of Social Services or call 1-800-552-3431.

Weatherization Assistance — Assists with energy efficiency and air infiltration

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A 15 percent share of the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) block grant funds are distributed to the Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) for the Weatherization Assistance Program. VDSS is responsible for receipt and distribution of the grant to DHCD.

The Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) administers this program. The program assists households with energy efficiency and air infiltration measures. To be eligible for any type of Weatherization Assistance, certain income and citizenship criteria must be met.

To apply for Weatherization assistance, visit the DHCD website.

image of a red square resembling a bullet Screening for Eligibility & Applying

image of a red square resembling a bullet Manual

image of a red square resembling a bullet Related Links

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image of a red square resembling a bullet Legal Basis

  • Federal Legal Base - Energy Policy Act of 2005, Public Law 109 - 58
  • Federal Regulations Base - 45 CFR Part 96 Subparts A - F and H
  • State Legal Base - Code of Virginia, Sections 63.2 - 217 and 63.2 - 805