Local/Regional News
2:52 pm
Tue January 22, 2013

Energy Assistance Program Running Out Of Funds As Weather Turns Colder

LEXINGTON, Ky. - With temperatures reaching new lows this winter, organizers with Community Action Council say a program designed to provide utility assistance to low income residents in Lexington is expected to run out of funds by mid February.

The combination of steep federal budget cuts and freezing temperatures could prove a challenging mix for residents relying on LIHEAP, the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program. The executive director of Community Action Council says this is the earliest in the year the program has come up short on funding.

"This is more caught up in the politics of Washington where they're arguing endlessly about the budget and in the meantime you've got those people still affected by the recession and very cold weather coming in," Burch says.

Burch says Columbia Gas and Kentucky Utilities have traditionally postponed shutting off power to residents when temperatures are below freezing and he expects the companies will do the same this year. Those wishing to donate to the Wintercare Energy Fund can do so at commaction.org.