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Help With Heating Bills: Assistance Applications Begin for All on Jan. 3


Temperatures have been brutal during the past week. That means rising home heating bills for everyone. But help is available for Mecklenburg County residents who have trouble paying those skyrocketing costs.

The Low-Income Energy Assistance Program (LIEAP) is one of several programs administered by the Department of Social Services (DSS) that help low-income households with their immediate energy needs, so they do not need to choose between heating their homes and other basic needs.

On Jan. 3, Mecklenburg County will begin taking LIEAP applications from ALL eligible households. DSS has already been taking applications through December from senior citizens aged 60 and older or disabled individuals who get help through the N.C. Division of Aging and Adult Services.

APPLY: Visit or call 704-336-3000 to begin the application process for LIEAP and to explore other programs that can help year-round.

Residents can apply for LIEAP through March 31 or until funds are exhausted. They do not have to be behind on their energy bills to receive a one-time LIEAP payment in the amount of $300, $400 or $500 based on their primary heating source. Applicants must meet income guidelines, be responsible for the bill, provide their account number, and show proof of income.

Households must meet the following criteria:

  • At least one eligible U.S. citizen or legal resident
  • Cash resources of $2,250 or below
  • Be responsible for the heating cost
  • Income at or below 130% of the Federal Poverty Limit

In addition to the application, an interview is required, and applicants must provide: 

  • Identification, such as a driver license, State ID card, or passport
  • Utility bill
  • Social Security number
  • Proof of income


If approved, a one-time payment will be made directly to the applicant's utility company. Payments will not be made to the applicant.

There are several programs to help Mecklenburg County residents pay their heating or cooling bills, including the Low-Income Energy Assistance Program (LIEAP) and the Crisis Intervention Program (CIP). To learn more, visit