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LIHEAP Heating Assistance: Criteria for Varying Benefits

LIHEAP Heating Assistance: Criteria for Varying Benefits

NOTE: LIHEAP directors have historically operated the program in response to a Congressional mandate to "assure that the highest benefits go to households with the lowest incomes and the highest energy costs in relation to income, taking into account family size." In order to tailor their benefits to the needs of the households, states have used any or all of the criteria listed below in establishing benefit levels. In its 1994 reauthorization of the LIHEAP program, Congress broadened the purpose of LIHEAP as, in part, to "provide assistance to low-income households in meeting their home energy costs, particularly those with the lowest incomes that pay a high proportion of household income for home energy."

Congress also encouraged program administrators to consider "energy burden" and "energy needs" in establishing benefits, and it defined these as follows: "Energy burden" was defined as "the expenditures of the household for home energy divided by the income of the household." The phrase "highest home energy needs" was described as "taking into account both the energy burden of such household and the unique situation of such household that results from having members of vulnerable populations, including very young children, individuals with disabilities, and frail older individuals."

The table below shows typical criteria states use to vary benefits; for more specific information on use of energy burden and energy need in benefit levels, see LIHEAP Clearinghouse Memorandum 510.

State
Income
HH Size
Energy Cost
Fuel Type
Climate/ Region
Individual Bill
Dwelling Type
Energy Burden
Energy Need
AL
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
No
No
No
Yes
AK
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
Yes
No
No
AZ
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
Yes
No
Yes
Yes
AR
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
No
No
No
Yes
CA
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
Yes
No
No
No
Yes
CO
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
Yes
Yes
No
No
CT
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
No
No
No
Yes
Yes
DE
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
No
No
Yes
No
DC
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
Yes
Yes
No
No
FL
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
No
No
No
No
No
GA
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
No
Yes
No
No
No
HI
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
Yes
No
Yes
Yes
Yes
ID
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
No
Yes
No
IL
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
No
No
No
IN
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
Yes
No
Yes
IA
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
No
Yes
No
No
KS
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
No
Yes
No
No
KY
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
No
No
No
No
LA
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
No
Yes
No
Yes
No
ME
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
No
MD
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
MA
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
No
Yes
Yes
No
MI
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
No
No
No
No
No
MN
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
No
Yes
No
No
MS
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
Yes
No
No
No
MO
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
No
No
No
No
MT
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
Yes
Yes
No
NE
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
No
Yes
No
No
NV
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
NH
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
No
NJ
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
No
Yes
No
NM
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
Yes
No
Yes
Yes
NY
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
No
No
No
No
NC
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
No
No
No
No
No
ND
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
No
No
No
No
No
OH
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
No
No
No
OK
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
No
No
No
No
OR
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
Yes
Yes
PA
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
No
No
No
RI
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
No
No
No
No
SC
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
Yes
No
Yes
Yes
SD
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
Yes
No
No
TN
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
No
No
No
No
No
TX
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
No
Yes
No
Yes
Yes
UT
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
VT
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
No
No
Yes
No
No
VA
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
No
Yes
No
WA
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
No
Yes
No
No
WV
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
Yes
No
No
No
WI
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
WY
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
No
No
Yes
No