folks who expect to have trouble paying their winter-heating bills this
season may apply for enrollment in the federal low-income energy assistance
program (EAP) in which the Northern Indiana Public Service Company (NIPSCO)
“While NIPSCO has
among the lowest residential gas bills in Indiana, payment assistance
programs help give a greater sense of security to customers experiencing
financial difficulties,” NIPSCO said in a statement released on Monday.
temperatures can be unpredictable, so we wanted to start communicating with
our customers and make them aware of the many assistance programs we have
available,” NIPSCO EAP Manager Kimberly Ferrell said. “These programs are in
place to help families in need, and we strongly encourage them to reach
Last month NIPSCO
projected that heating bills during the upcoming winter season--Nov. 1 to
March 31--will spike by 24 percent over last season. That is, over the
course of the 2016-17 winter, average residential customers are expected to
pay a total of $78 more than they did during the 2015-16 season. That
amounts to $15 more per month.
include the following:
* Low Income
Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP): Available to households falling
within 150 percent of federal poverty guidelines. Between Dec. 1 and March
15, Indiana utilities do not disconnect service to customers enrolled in
LIHEAP who are behind in their bills.
Customer Assistance for Residential Energy (CARE) discount program:
Designed to provide further gas bill reductions to LIHEAP-eligible
customers. Once enrolled in LIHEAP, customers are automatically enrolled in
Hardship Program: For customers between 151 and 200 percent of the
federal poverty guideline, it offers up to $400 in gas bill assistance.
service reps are trained to connect customers with available funds. Cal from
7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Mondays through Fridays at (800) 464-7726.
based on income and family size. For more information and a listing of
agencies that help to administer assistance programs, visit NIPSCO.com/PaymentAssistance
information is usually required when applying for LIHEAP:
* Indiana photo ID.
* Social Security
cards for all household members.
* NIPSCO bill.
* Proof of
* Proof of income.