Application forms for the Cooling Assistance program is available online and the Hanover Department of Social Services is processing applications. This program runs through August 15 or until the money is gone.
Cooling Assistance, offered through the Virginia Department of Social Services Energy Assistance Program, helps eligible households meet costs related to cooling one's home. This can include:
- payment of electric bills (up to a determined maximum) 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
- the purchase and installation of one window unit air conditioner for households where there is no unit or where the unit needs to be replaced
To be eligible, the household must have at least one vulnerable individual aged 60 or older, disabled, or a child under age 6. Assistance is based on the availability of funds and is first-come, first-serve. Renters must have written permission from their property owner to make alterations or improvements to the property in order to be eligible.
“It’s probably going to be hot and humid this summer and this weather can be very dangerous to elderly and disabled people as well as children,” said Sheila Crossen-Powell, Director of Hanover County Social Services. “We urge anyone who would like to know more about the cooling assistance program to call us at 804-365-4100.”
An eligible household can receive more than one type of assistance per application and may apply more than once during the cooling season, but only one member of a household may apply. Financial eligibility is based on income only. Income levels cannot exceed federal poverty guidelines by more than 30%. Applicants must provide proof of income for all household members. Electric utility bills must be in the name of a household member or the service address must be the same as the applicant’s address.
The easiest way to apply for Cooling Assistance is online at www.commonhelp.virginia.gov, or by calling 1-855-635-4370 toll-free.
Paper applications are on the web at http://dss.virginia.gov/benefit/ea/index.cgi or are available at the Hanover Department of Social Services. Paper applications can be mailed or returned in person to 12304 Washington Highway, Ashland, VA 23005 or faxed to 804-365-4110. The applicant must sign all applications.
For more information about the Cooling Assistance program, call the Hanover Department of Social Services at 804-365-4100 or stop by the office.