Virginia accepting Cooling Assistance applications

In this Sept. 6, 2013 photo, one of Commonwealth Edison's new "smart" electricity meters in seen in North Riverside, Ill.  The new meter is a wireless devices that relays information on electricity consumption directly to the utility. The new units will eliminate the need for meter readers, estimated bills, and give customers the opportunity to save money because they'll be able to track daily electric consumption online and make simple changes _ like unplugging appliances or running dishwashers at certain hours. (AP Photo/M. Spencer Green)
In this Sept. 6, 2013 photo, one of Commonwealth Edison's new "smart" electricity meters in seen in North Riverside, Ill. The new meter is a wireless devices that relays information on electricity consumption directly to the utility. The new units will eliminate the need for meter readers, estimated bills, and give customers the opportunity to save money because they'll be able to track daily electric consumption online and make simple changes _ like unplugging appliances or running dishwashers at certain hours. (AP Photo/M. Spencer Green)

RICHMOND, Va. (WAVY) — Due to Virginia’s high temperatures this summer, Departments of Social Services throughout Virginia are helping keep people cool by accepting Cooling Assistance applications.

Households can apply now through August 15 as part of the Virginia Department of Social Services’ Energy Assistance Program.

A household may qualify for Cooling Assistance if there is a child under 6 years old, a person with a disability or an adult age 60 or older living in the home. The home must also meet a maximum gross monthly income (before taxes) for a one-person household of $1,265 or $2,584 for a household of four.

Available methods of cooling assistance include:

  • Payment of electric bills to operate cooling equipment;
  • Payment of security deposits for electricity to operate cooling equipment;
  • Repair of a central air conditioning system or heat pump;
  • Purchase of a whole-house fan, including ceiling or attic fans; and
  • Purchase and installation of a window unit air conditioner for households without a working one.

Those eligible may qualify for more than one type of assistance. The amount Virginia gets to disburse varies from year-to-year. Assistance will be available until funds run out.

Families and individuals must apply with their local department of social services or online via CommonHelp by August 15.

The Cooling Assistance component helped more than 70,000 Virginia households in 2013. To learn more, visit http://www.dss.virginia.gov/benefit/ea/index.cgi, call 211-VIRGINIA or visit www.211virginia.org.

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