Low temperatures result in high heat bills - KMSP-TV

Low temperatures result in high heat bills

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ATLANTA -

Recent record-low temperatures are making budgeting hard to handle for some this month. The good news is there is help available for those in need.

Back in early December, dozens of people were turned away from Low Income Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) offices after being told funding had run dry.

More than a month later, signs still remained on office doors saying that there is no new funding.

DeKalb County resident Karen Stringer, who was turned away in early December, was back on Monday.

"I have been calling every day since, asking them about the money, if they've got any money released for the energy assistance and you get somebody and get a recording and you get somebody that says, ‘No, we haven't heard anything. Just call, just keep calling back and calling back,' and that's what I've been doing," said Stringer.

FOX 5 talked with, Vicki Clubbs, the chief administrative officer of the Partnership for Community Action, which administers LIHEAP. She said they are still waiting on an allocation of $5.6 million from the state of Georgia. The wait is leaving tens of thousands of Georgians hanging in the balance.

"It's been terrible and exhausting, mentally as well as physically, trying to deal with this," Stringer said.  "Getting the money to sustain and keep my gas going and going because I'm on a fixed income."

The program services residents in DeKalb, Rockdale and Gwinnett counties.

With the recent cold snap and more cold coming this week, residents are even more desperate for the heat help. Clubbs said that the agency does have a very limited amount of funds to help those only in crisis or in jeopardy of being disconnected in the next three days.

For assistance information on heating assistance programs, call:

Heating Energy Assistance Team (H.E.A.T.) - - 404-656-6696

LIHEAP (DeKalb, Gwinnett and Rockdale) 404-537-4300; (Fulton) 404-320-0166

United Way – 211

Salvation Army 404-873-3101 or 1-800-257-4273

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