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The 2016-2017 Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) has been established to help qualifying low-income Iowa homeowners and renters pay for a portion of their primary heating costs for the winter heating season. The assistance is based on household income, household size, type of fuel and type of housing.

Besides meeting the income guidelines, you must furnish the Social Security numbers of all household members and a copy of recent heating and electric bills. You also must show proof of income for all household members age 19 and over. If you receive alimony or child support, it will need to be verified too.

If you’re a wage earner, you should bring copies of your check stubs for the 3-month period before the date of application or a copy of your federal income tax return. If you’re self-employed or a farmer, provide a copy of your most recent federal income tax return. And if you’re on a fixed income – Social Security Benefits, Supplemental Security Income, Family Investment Program (FIP), Veteran’s Assistance, Unemployment Insurance and pensions – take copies of your three most recent check stubs. For FIP recipients, bring your current DHS Notice of Decision or contact your local office for acceptable document information.

In Iowa, applications for the program will be accepted on a first-come/first-served basis from Nov. 1, 2016, through April 30, 2017. The start date is Oct. 1, 2016, for elderly (60 and over) and/or disabled applicants.

For more information about the program or to find out where to apply, write: LIHEAP, Iowa Department of Human Rights, Capitol Complex, Des Moines, IA 50319. You also can call your local community action agency.

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