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Vectren offers $200,000 in matching funds to support weatherization

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DAYTON — Vectren Energy Delivery will match dollar-for-dollar all public donations to its Share the Warmth Inc. program this winter, up to a total of $200,000.

Share the Warmth, a 501c3 nonprofit organization, annually allocates funds to Community Action Partnership of the Greater Dayton Area which administers Vectren’s Project TEEM Weatherization Program.

This weatherization initiative is designed to offer comprehensive long-term energy conservation benefits to single family homeowners who meet the state and federal guidelines for low-income. Through donations, Share the Warmth has weatherized more than 235 homes since 2007, making homes more comfortable and utility bills more manageable for those in need.

“Many low-income families are faced with higher-than-average energy bills because they often reside in older, inefficient homes with out-dated furnaces and inadequate insulation,” said Colleen Ryan, president of Vectren Energy Delivery of Ohio. “If fully utilized, this program could yield an additional $400,000 to weatherize even more households in need.”

Tax-deductible donations can be made to Share the Warmth Inc., P.O. Box 931, Evansville, IN 47706-0931. More information and a contribution form are available at www.sharethewarmthinc.com.

Vectren customers paying their bills online also have the opportunity to round the payment up to the nearest dollar, donating the additional amount to Share the Warmth.

Those who qualify for the low-income weatherization program will receive a free, on-site home energy audit to determine areas in need of energy-efficiency upgrades. Energy efficiency experts from the local Community Action Agency will then implement a number of efficiency measures on an as-needed basis, which may include: adding insulation in the walls or attic, sealing ductwork and air leaks and installing high-efficiency natural gas furnaces and/or water heaters.

Customers needing bill payment assistance or who are interested in the weatherization program may find the Community Action Agency nearest them by calling the Ohio Department of Development at (800) 282-0880. Recipients of program dollars must be at or below 200 percent of federal poverty guidelines to qualify for Share the Warmth weatherization assistance.

 Utility assistance available

Tri-County Community Action staff will be available at the following locations to help with utility assistance applications:  

• West Liberty Library — 1 to 3 p.m. Thursday.

• DeGraff Library — 10 a.m. to noon Friday.

• Rushsylvania Library — 10 a.m. to noon Tuesday, Feb. 18.

• Lakeview Library — 10 a.m. to noon Tuesday, Feb. 25.

Applicants should take their current gas and electric bills, last 90 days of income and Social Security numbers and birthdates for all household members.

No appointment is necessary. Call 593-0034 for more information.

HEAP assistance available

Tri-County Community Action is providing assistance completing Home Energy Assistance program applications in Logan, Champaign, and Shelby counties, through the Area Agency on Aging.

This service is provided to those applicants who are 60 years of age or older and/or have disabilities through Feb. 28.

HEAP is a federally funded program administered by the Ohio Department of Development's office of Community Assistance. The program is to help eligible low income Ohioans, at or below 175 percent of the poverty level meet their heating costs.

HEAP is a one-time benefit that is applied to the client's energy bill by the utility company.

The amount of the benefit will depend on federal funding levels, how many people live in your household, total household income, and the primary fuel used to heat the home.

Applicants must take to their appointment: household income for the past 13 weeks, photo identification and Social Security cards, utility bills, and proof of disability if disabled. If your income is zero, you must have proof that explains how you maintain your household.

Income guidelines for the program are as follows: household of one, $20,108; two, $27,143; three, $34,178; four, $41,213; five, $48,248; six, $55,283; seven, $62,318.

Appointments are available by calling 593-0034 or (866) 256-4497. In-home appointments are available for homebound residents.

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