The Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) will begin accepting applications for utility bill payment assistance on July 27th, 2020. Applications are taken on a first-come, first-served basis until June 30th, 2021 or until funding is exhausted. There will be no priority periods. Households in need of energy assistance, especially those with disconnection notices, high past due balances and the general population that has been most likely affected by wage fluctuations due to COVID-19 are encouraged to apply. In addition, propane customers are strongly encouraged to apply in August when prices are at its lowest.
Households can apply for Energy Assistance via our website or printed applications are available upon request by calling 309.999.3840.
Customers must have all required documentation when applying for assistance including:
- Proof of gross income from all household members for the 30-day period beginning with the date of the application.
- A copy of their current utility bill
- Proof of Social Security numbers for all household members.
- Proof of household received Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF); AID to the Aged, Blind, or Disabled (AABD); or other benefits, such as Medical Eligibility or Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), if receiving assistance from the Illinois Department of Human Services.
The 30-day income guidelines for LIHEAP have increased and are now based on 200% of the Federal Poverty Level and the number of persons living in the household. A single-person household qualify with a monthly income of up to $2,127; a two-person household up to $2,873; a family of three can earn up to $3,620 and a family of four can earn up to $4,367. Benefits are paid directly to energy vendors on behalf of eligible households. The exception is households whose heating costs are included in their rent. These households must provide proof that their rent is more than 30% of their income in order to qualify for LIHEAP benefits.
The Percentage of Income Payment Plan (PIPP) is also available to customers of Ameren Illinois. Under PIPP, eligible households pay a percentage of their income, receive a monthly benefit towards their utility bill, an arrearage reduction for every on-time and in full payment by the due date they make, if applicable. Starting September 1st 2020, PIPP applications will be taken on a first-come, first-served basis each month until March 31st, 2021 or available funding per county and per utility is exhausted. The 30-day income guidelines for PIPP are based on 150% of the Federal Poverty Level and the number of persons living in the household. The guidelines are as follows: 1-$1,595, 2-$2,155, 3-$2,715, 4-$3,275 (add $560 for each additional household member).
LIHEAP is a state and federally funded energy assistance program for low-income families, in which heating bill payments are made on behalf of eligible households. Funding is provided by Illinois Department of Economic Opportunity (DCEO).