Fuel Assistance Program – Citizens for Citizens, Inc.
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Fuel Assistance Program (LIHEAP)

Our Fuel Assistance offices are closed to the public, but staff are still working to take new applications over the phone, answer questions for clients regarding program requirements and benefits and answering client mail to determine eligibility. Applications are being taken by phone for 2020-21. Clients are required to submit the necessary documentation in order to complete their file, which can be done via mail or by dropping the paperwork off in the drop-box outside of our Fall River Griffin St. office or just inside the door of our Taunton office. Please call us at 508 – 679 – 0041 for Fall River and 508 – 823 – 6346 for the Taunton area with any questions. You can also e-mail the fuel program at fuelmail@cfcinc.org and someone will contact you within 24 to 36 hours during the week. Those who have applied this fuel season can access information 24/7 by calling 508 – 676 – 7397.  All returning clients from the prior year should have received their applications in the mail except those who have heat included in their rent (heat-included applications are sent out late November). Please be advised that utility companies are currently not terminating any service.  If you have no heat due to lack of a deliverable fuel or have had your services disconnected, please contact our office immediately. Office hours are now effectively M – F 8:30a to 4:30p.

American families have to make tough decisions when it comes to their finances. Do you pay for child care over food? Energy bills over medicine? With the help of the LIHEAP program, you can make less compromises on the important things.

The Fuel Assistance program assists eligible households pay their heating bills during the winter/spring season or until benefits are exhausted. Clients also receive various discounts such as telephone discounts, electric discounts, and gas and oil discounts. Clients will also be provided help with past due arrearage management.

The benefits don’t stop there! When you qualify for LIHEAP, you gain access to our other energy related services including Weatherization, Heating Repairs, and Appliance Management to enhance the energy efficiency of your home, saving you even more money.

Program Details:

Eligibility: Eligibility is based on annual gross household income, family size and annual heat consumption. Income guidelines used are established by the federal government.

Service Area: Fall River, Assonet, Freetown, Rehoboth, Swansea, Somerset, Seekonk, Westport, Taunton, Berkley, Dighton, and Lakeville.

Documentation Needed: Clients must document a minimum of “4” consecutive weeks of income or any number not to exceed the prior “52” weeks. Proof of residence is required for all applicants by submitting a copy of a current heating or electric bill. Social security numbers are requested of all household members over 18 yrs of age. Proof of housing costs is also required. For renters, please submit a copy of the current lease or rent receipt and for homeowners, please submit a current mortgage statement, real estate tax bill and homeowners insurance policy with an annual premium.

Households must document US Citizenship or “Qualified Alien Status” for all members. Some examples of documentation are: social security card, birth certificate and/or green card. Please contact our office for a complete list of acceptable documents.

All necessary forms can be viewed and downloaded here.

Please note: Households that include non-citizens may be eligible for fuel assistance benefits if the non-citizens are “Qualified Aliens” or if at least one member of the household is a United States citizen (which may include a child born in the US). Green cards (INS Form I-551) are one of the documents that establish “Qualified Alien” status for a member of the household. Again, please contact our office for a more complete list of acceptable documents.

Application Process: Face to face interview with an intake worker for the initial application of assistance is required. In subsequent years, client is mailed a pre-printed application which the client verifies for accuracy of the information or updates incorrect information and returns the application to C.F.C.’s Fuel Office.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

How will I find out if I am approved for fuel assistance?

You will receive either a letter of eligibility or a letter of denial mailed directly to you.

How long does it take to find out if I have been approved for Fuel Assistance?

Normally, it takes approximately 6-8 weeks from 11/1 or your application completion date (whichever is later) to have your application processed. Incomplete applications cause additional delays. You can also check the status of your application or payments made by calling our 24/7 hotline at 508-676-7397 (Available in 4 languages).

How do my heating bills get paid?

CFC will also notify your heating company of your eligibility and the amount of benefits in which you are eligible. Your heating company will submit your bills directly to CFC on a monthly basis for payment. CFC makes payments directly to your heating company. You will continue to receive your bills as well.

What other benefits am I eligible to receive if I am determined eligible for Fuel Assistance?

Once deemed eligible, CFC will automatically enroll you for utility discounts offered by various companies. Please note that TMLP and Middleboro Gas & Electric do not currently offer discounts for fuel assistance eligible customers. You may also be eligible for our free energy efficiency services, which include an energy audit, weatherization, replacement of inefficient appliances, and heating system repair and/or replacement.

What period of time do my bills get paid?

The program begins on 11/1/2020 and ends on 4/30/2021. Primary heating bills incurred between this period of time are eligible for payment depending upon your maximum benefit level. We suggest that you keep track of your monthly bills so you know when you have reached the amount in which you are eligible. After that, you are responsible to pay your monthly bills. If you have a balance owed to your utility company, you should inquire about the Arrearage Forgiveness program offered by your utility company
(excluding municipal companies). See back of pamphlet for utility contact info.

What if my heat is included in my rent?

If you live in non-subsidized housing and have your heat included in your rent, you may be eligible for a 30% reimbursement of your monthly rent paid back to you. Reimbursements are for the winter months between November – April or up to your maximum benefit level.

Does fuel assistance help with electric bills?

The fuel assistance program helps households with their primary heating source bills. If determined eligible, CFC will notify your electric company so that you can be put on the discount rate, which in turn will lower your monthly electric bill. (Municipal electric companies excluded.) If your electricity is shut off or about to be shut off, you can contact the fuel assistance department for additional information.

Fall River Office

Director: Garth Patterson
E-mail: fuelmail@cfcinc.org

Address: 250 Griffin St., Fall River, MA 02724
Telephone: (508) 679-0041
Automated Telephone Line: (508) 676-7398
(Four languages: English, Spanish, Portuguese, Khmer)
FAX: (508) 675-0245

Office Hours:

November 1st thru April 30th
Mon – Fri 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

Off-Season Office Hours:
Mon. – Fri. 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

Taunton Office

Director: Garth Patterson

Contact E-mail: fuelmail@cfcinc.org

Address: 1 Taunton Green, Taunton MA 02780
Telephone: (508) 823-6346
Automated Telephone Line: (508) 676-7398
(Four Languages: English, Portuguese, Spanish, Khmer)
FAX: (508) 823-6348

Office Hours:

November 1st thru April 30th
Mon – Fri 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

Off-Season Office Hours:
Mon. – Fri. 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.