Program Provides Aid for Those Who Can't Afford Heating Bills

By: Liz Palka Email
By: Liz Palka Email

January 5, 2010

Whether you use electricity, gas or wood heating your home can be expensive. But, that doesn't mean you're going to be left behind in the cold.

A federal program through the Department of Social Services can help people who have a home heating emergency. That means you're heating equipment is broken or you can't pay your bill and your heat is about to be cut off.

"When the cold weather hits, and it gets really cold, that's when people tend to come in and call the most," said Buz Cox, the Director of Social Services in Charlottesville.

A household must qualify for the emergency help through an application and depending on the income of the family.

If you can't afford to heat your home, Tiger Fuel encourages customers to use their resources.

"There are a lot of churches, social service organizations, as well as the state that help with fuel assistance," said David Sutton, the President of Tiger Fuel. "We work very hard to get the customers with those agencies and associations."

Sutton says the price of fuel has come down making payments easier for some. But, people still need help.

Sutton encourages people to call Tiger Fuel if they can't afford their heat. His staff can help guide people to other resources.

The home heating emergency program is available at the Department of Social Services across the state. Cox says it will remain through the worst of the cold months.

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