Winter Crisis program endangered

R-H Staff

DAYTON — Miami Valley Community Action Partnership’s (MVCAP) Winter Crisis Program (WCP) continues to help low income Ohioans threatened with disconnection, have been disconnected, or have less than 25 percent supply of bulk fuel in their tank to maintain their utility service. Ohioans with a gross income at or below 175 percent of the federal poverty guidelines ($43,050 for a family of four) are eligible.

The Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP) and the Percentage of Income Payment Plan Plus (PIPP Plus) assisted more than 130,000 Ohioans statewide in 2016. HEAP’s Winter Crisis

Program runs until March 31, 2018 and will continue to assist households in emergency situations where disconnection is threatened or bulk fuel is of a limited supply.

President Trump’s proposed budget for Fiscal Year 2019 “zeroes” out the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) funding these programs, which so far have served more than 2,100 households — approximately 5,200 people in the Miami Valley — since Nov. 1, 2017.

With approximately 71 percent of the $750,000 of the LIHEAP funds expended for the current Winter Crisis season, MVCAP will continue to assist clients through March 31, 2018, to exhaust the remainder of the funds.

“This program is vital to the health and safety of thousands of households in our community,” said Cherish Cronmiller, CEO of MVCAP. “We ask residents to make contact with their legislators about the importance of this program. This budget calls for the complete elimination of the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program, which would include the Summer and Winter Crisis programs.”

R-H Staff