Note: In 1994, a new provision, Assurance 16, was added to the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program statute. It provides LIHEAP grantees the option of spending no more than five percent of their LIHEAP funds on services that encourage and enable households to reduce their home energy needs and thereby the need for energy assistance, including needs assessment, counseling, and assistance with energy vendors.
State % Funds Description Alabama 2022 1 Funds are used for activities that encourage and reduce their home energy needs such as: needs assessments focusing on target groups of the elderly, disabled and small children; energy and financial counseling; and assistance with energy suppliers with the goal to reduce disconnects and shut-offs. Alaska 2022 0 Alaska is not electing to use funding for Assurance 16 American Samoa 2020 5 Some of the funds are used to produce and/order energy conservation material to give out during outreach, public hearings, client intake, etc. Arizona 2022 5 Service Providers offer energy reduction education through various methods such as brochures, teaching applicants during the application process, in-house tutorial videos presented in waiting areas, and/or classes. Arkansas 2022 5 Assurance 16 services provided to LIHEAP households encourage and enable households to reduce their home energy usage and thereby reduce their dependence on enrgy asstance and help them acheive a higher degree of self-sufficiency. Assurance 16 activities may include, but are not limited to, needs assessments, counseling referrals to other coordinated services, presenting education programs on ways to save energy in the households, and household budgeting. Case Management Activities (CMA) will be targeted toward Crisis Intervention Program applicants and also, when deemed appropriate and necessary, the Regular Assistance Program. California 2022 5 Local Service Providers address the energy needs of low-income households by conducting a thorough energy needs assessment of each client, providing budget counseling, energy conservation education, and coordination with utility companies. Whenever possible, weatherization services are also provided to offer a preventive, holistic and long-term solution to energy needs. Local Service Providers maintain a source document that substantiates that the client was provided these services. The document is kept on file by the contractor and is reviewed during routine program evaluation. Colorado 2022 0 Connecticut 2022 1.5 Assurance 16 funds play a significant role in the ability of community action agencies to provide the appropriate case management activities aimed at reducing reliance on LIHEAP funds and reducing their overall energy needs. Such services include, but are not limited to, assistance with arrearage reduction, non-CEAP funded fuel banks, financial education, energy conservation and vendor mediation. Delaware 2022 2.4 DHSS uses LIHEAP funds to provide several Assurance 16 services to eligible clients, including materials with energy education. Assurance 16 is also utilized for in-kind purchases, like blankets and fans. LIHEAP CALENDAR DHSS uses LIHEAP funds to provide several Assurance 16 services to eligible clients, including materials with energy education. Assurance 16 is also utilized for in-kind purchases, like blankets and fans. Assurance 16 activities are provided by more than one agency. 1. LIHEAP Calendar 2. In-Kind Products: Blankets and Fans 3. Energy Efficiency: Education and Case Management District of Columbia 2022 2 Up to two (2) percent of awarded funds are used to conduct educational activities to educate participants on how to identify energy waste, increase energy efficiency, and to understand and read their utility bills. These activities are conducted to assist clients in reducing their energy costs. For LIHEAP weatherization cases, DOEE's energy efficiency staff explains his findings to the LIHEAP household members. Florida 2022 0.5 The department budgets 0.5 percent of it's LIHEAP funds for Assurance 16 activities. Energy education and financial/budget counseling are allowable costs under the grant. Georgia 2022 0 Georgia LIHEAP will set aside 0.5% of the regular LIHEAP funds in FFY 202 for Assurance 16 services to eligible LIHEAP households. In an effort to address the issues related to lack of heating, choices of unsafe means of heating, cooking and attending to personal needs, the following procedures are in place to perform the following types of activities under Assurance 16: Mass outreach items given to eligible LIHEAP households; Consumer counseling regarding bill payments, schedules of payments, unsafe means of heating, energy conservation, budget billing, and other such information necessary to alleviate the energy burden to eligible LIHEAP households. Hawaii 2022 0 Idaho 2022 5 DSPs provide a number of ancillary services to encourage and enable households to reduce their home energy consumption to include:
- Provide information about level payment plans during energy education, targeted to vulnerable populations and fixed income participants;
- Purchasing low cost/no cost energy conservation measures for non-regulated electric utilities;
- Leveraging supplemental payments for participants who were unable to obtain their LIHEAP heating assistance benefits or for whom a LIHEAP heating assistance benefit was insufficient to prevent/resolve a heating emergency;
- Assessment home energy use;
- Referral to the Weatherization Assistance Program;
- Provide centralized energy education classes at outreach sites;
- Tailoring outreach to target households of a specific utilities to increase participation in utility funded energy conservation programs; and
- Advocate on behalf of households with home energy vendors to prevent disconnection.
Illinois 2022 3 The Department conducts LIHEAP client education and counseling of customers who seek energy assistance. This counseling will encourage and enable these LIHEAP households to reduce the cost of their home energy through energy conservation and energy lifestyle (behavioral) modifications. This will potentially lower the household's energy cost and reduce the need for energy assistance. Indiana 2022 5 Indiana uses LIHEAP funds to conduct Family Development and Energy Education. Family Development provides low-income households with short-term and long-term case management. Clients set goals and receive referrals for education, budgeting, home energy assessments, employment, child care, and a range of other self-sufficiency tools. EAP clients may also receive energy education which focuses mainly on energy conservation techniques. Some LSPs give pre-test and post-tests to households to determine how the client's energy education knowledge changed after receiving energy education. Iowa 2022 3 Allowable activities using Assurance 16 funds include:
- Conservation Education
- Printing and furnishing information about how to reduce energy usage (e.g., workshops, handouts, brochures, etc.)
- How to obtain energy efficiency services (e.g., referrals)
- One-on-one energy education
- Conservation Education materials are required to be distributed to all households applying for LIHEAP, including crisis applications.
- Low-Cost Energy Efficiency Measures Examples include: plastic, heating unit filters, energy kits, etc.
- Vendor Advocacy Helping the client effectively communicate with the vendor to maintain service, etc.
- Needs Assessment and Referral Reviewing the client’s case record and identifying the most appropriate referrals
- Financial Counseling Working with the client to improve financial management skills and proactively manage energy bills
- Case Management – Short Term Developing information and materials about services available to LIHEAP clients Developing an understanding of a client’s needs and offering counseling during LIHEAP intake
- Case Management – Long Term Developing a curriculum and training materials for service delivery Working with clients on energy education and/or financial counseling over an extended time period
Kansas 2022 0 No activities conducted at this time. Kentucky 2022 0 Every Community Action Agency is given the opportunity to provide counseling to help reduce the households' energy bills. The agencies that do utilitze LIHEAP funds for Assurance 16 will provide energy reduction solutions and education, including but not limited to the completion of and follow up on Weatherization applications. The CAAs will provide services based on the needs in their area, assisting household with the thorough and long-term plan to reduce energy usage and energy burden. Participants that visited Northern Kentucky Community Action Agencies or who had appointments over the phone for assistance with their high heating costs were given energy reduction solutions and education/counseling, including but not limited to: the completion of and follow-up on Weatherization applications/ referrals to Financial Literacy and Home Ownership classes and Energy Education workshops. The participants were also encouraged to take part in one-on-one counseling by certified Financial literacy and HUD counseling staff; basic Budget and Credit counseling and/or classes, and referral to free tax preparation through the VITA (Volunteer Income Tax Assistance) for low income families. As applicants apply at Community Action Council, they receive information to make them aware of actions they can take to reduce energy consumption. Topics covered include but are not limited to, turning off lights in rooms not using, usage of compact fluorescent bulbs, turning down thermostat when away and at night, changing air filters. The Council hopes by providing energy saving tips coupled with financial counseling participants' household expense will decrease and start a pathway to financial stability. Printed materials are in English and Spanish. Other brochures and handouts are available and used at the discretion of the neighborhood and community centers. Louisiana 2022 2.5 Energy education is provided to eligible and ineligible households. Local agencies are required to develop active, participatory energy conservation education activities. They are also encouraged to use educational activities that can be carried out while the applicant is waiting for intake. Services can include counseling, assistance with negotiations with energy vendors, outreach, referrals to the Weatherization Assistance Program, and energy efficiency education materials. Maine 2022 5 Subgrantees may submit annual proposals for MaineHousing's consideration, describing their planned activities and expenses associated with providing services to applicants pursuant to Assurance 16 of the HEAP Act. Assurance 16 funds may only be used to fund activities that encourage and enable eligible households to reduce their home energy needs and thereby the need for energy assistance. Only LIHEAP eligible households may receive Assurance 16 services. The services being funded by Assurance 16 must be energy related and may include family development case management and education activities. Subgrantees are required to have proper fiscal controls to ensure the LIHEAP funds are expended proportional to the overall funding sources using proper cost allocation methodology. There must be proper documentation of participation and a methodology to measure outcomes from the Assurance 16 activities. Salaries and benefit costs for any staff providing services that encourage and enable households to reduce their home energy needs and thereby the need for energy assistance are allowable. Additionally, direct costs associated with providing these services, including supplies, equipment, postage, utilities, rental office space, and travel costs incurred for official business are also allowable. Services that are already provided as part of the delivery of other federal programs cannot be charged to Assurance 16. Examples:
- Working with an electric utility to forestall a shut-off as part of providing an Energy Crisis Intervention Program (ECIP) benefit cannot be charged to Assurance 16 because this activity is already required and funded under ECIP.
- Outreach/Intake services, regardless of where they are provided, or who (which staff member/position) provides them, cannot be charged to Assurance 16. These activities are already required under HEAP fuel assistance, and therefore, do not provide an additional benefit to eligible households.
- Mailed out applications are not allowed to be charged to Assurance 16.
- Indirect charges cannot be charged to Assurance 16.
- Client referrals to other programs or resources that are not related to clients' home energy needs or do not reflect an additional net benefit for the client.
Mariana Islands 2022 2 LIHEAP Office work closely with Household with High Energy Burden by assessing ways and means to reduce their energy burden. 1. Weatherization Measure 2. Switch of Meter from regular meter to prepaid meter. Prepaid "Nighthawk" meter is an online purchase system that is available 24/7. It is a prepaid system that allows pre-purchased kilowatts and it promotes and enable households to learn conservation of power consumption. Whereas, the regular meter are post paid, and charges are too high. Household with Nighthawk meter have learned to conserve on high energy through this system. Maryland 2022 0 Massachusetts 2022 3 In accordance with LIHEAP regulations and pending availability of funds, LAAs provide program related services such as: needs assessment, budget counseling, energy education/awareness and vendor relations as part of the ongoing servicing of eligible households. These services, under Assurance 16 of the LIHEAP statute, are directed towards households that may be in financial/energy crisis requiring individual attention beyond the standard course of action. DHCD encourages working with utilities on issues impacting users, particularly elders, expanding education, awareness efforts, and referrals. DHCD monitors Assurance 16 activities conducted by LAAs through annual contracting and monitoring process to ensure compliance with funding requirements. Michigan 2022 5 Assurance 16 funding will be allocated to the Michigan Energy Assistance Program (MEAP) so that households applying for crisis assistance can receive Assurance 16 services to assist with the reduction of energy costs and their need for assistance. Michigan Public Act of 2012 states, "Energy assistance must include services that will enable participants to become or move toward becoming self-sufficient, including assisting participants in paying their energy bills on time, assisting participants in budgeting for and contributing to their ability to provide for energy expenses, and assisting participants in utilizing energy services to optimize on energy efficiency." Allowable self-sufficiency expenditures are included in theMEAP manual and include needs assessment, budgeting assistance, energy education, and providing assistance to households to enroll in affordable payment plans offered by their energy provider(s). Households who receive weatherization services may also receive Assurance 16 services, as part of the WAP. Minnesota 2022 5 Assurance 16 funding will be allocated to the Michigan Energy Assistance Program (MEAP) so that households applying for crisis assistance can receive Assurance 16 services to assist with the reduction of energy costs and their need for assistance. Michigan Public Act of 2012 states, "Energy assistance must include services that will enable participants to become or move toward becoming self-sufficient, including assisting participants in paying their energy bills on time, assisting participants in budgeting for and contributing to their ability to provide for energy expenses, and assisting participants in utilizing energy services to optimize on energy efficiency." Allowable self-sufficiency expenditures are included in the MEAP manual and include needs assessment, budgeting assistance, energy education, and providing assistance to households to enroll in affordable payment plans offered by their energy provider(s). Households who receive weatherization services may also receive Assurance 16 services, as part of the WAP. Mississippi 2022 0 Missouri 2022 0 Montana 2022 2.75 Assurance 16 services are provided through ten (10) local Human Resource Development Councils and one (1) Area Agency on Aging. Each administering agency targets client education activities for eligible households in accordance with annual work plans submitted by each agency. Each work plan describes the eligible activity and then describes how the activity will be accomplished. Nebraska 2022 0 DHHS does not utilize LIHEAP funds for Assurance 16, at this time. Nevada 2022 0 LIHEAP/EAP staff assists households by mediating with the utility companies and other energy vendors, coordinating sources of assistance, counseling, and making referrals to other agencies and programs. New Hampshire 2022 5 The NH Fuel Assistance Program allocates up to 5% of the total grant award to Assurance 16 activities to provide self-sufficiency education to all households with fast-tracked crisis applications within the prior program year to encourage applicants to apply for benefits in a timely manner in the new program year to avoid life-threatening situations and special delivery charges, which deplete the household's benefit. Households receive information on timeframes for applying, the application process, managing resources, communication with vendors, and referrals to other resources. New Jersey 2022 0 New Mexico 2022 0 New York 2022 0 North Carolina 2022 0 North Dakota 2022 0 Ohio 2022 1 In order to comply with Section 2605(b)(16) of the LIHEAP statute (42 U.S.C & 8624(b)(16))-Assurance 16, Development will provide a maximum of 5% of the total annual State of Ohio LIHEAP allocation to encourage and enable households to reduce their home energy needs. Funding will be made available annually through a request for proposal process. Applications will be received and reviewed on a first come, first served basis during the open application period. The request for proposal will outline the following:
- Requested funding amount, uses and any leveraged resources
- Description of the project and how the project will reduce the household’s energy burden
- Anticipated outcomes
- Methodologies for tracking outcomes
If the applicant is awarded funds, they will be required to report on the number of households served and the impact on those households (including pre- and post-testing, customer survey responses etc.). Examples of how LIHEAP funds have been provided through Assurance 16: The Breathing Association, a HEAP grantee, operates a health care clinic and a mobile medical van serving low income, HEAP eligible individuals. The Breathing Association provides HEAP educational materials to customers that are receiving medical care. Prior to being evaluated by a Nurse Practitioner, the customer is provided a pre-test, focusing on residential energy conservation questions. After the pre-test, the customer is required to watch a seven-minute video about residential energy conservation. After the customer has been seen by the Nurse Practitioner, they are given a post-test on energy savings and provided additional educational materials such as brochures that highlight energy residential savings techniques. KHCA aids households served by rural electric cooperatives that do not qualify for other energy efficiency programs by providing them with energy saving materials, including energy efficient LED bulbs to replace their incandescent and compact florescent light bulbs (CFLs), shower heads and aerators, discharge pipe and smart strips, and pipe wrap. Harcatus provides households with boxes of energy saving measures. Boxes are composed of LED bulbs, LED nightlights, aerators, energy savings showerheads, pipe wrap, a smart strip surge protector, and energy savings tips. Ohio Energy Project targets low-income families that have children in historically low-income schools. While in the schools, energy efficiency measures are addressed through a series of 5 hands-on lab experiments. Energy efficiency kits are provided for household to reduce their energy burden at home. Kits include LED light bulbs, low-flow showerhead, sink aerator, LED nightlight and weather stripping. MYCAP provides households with budgeting help, conservation tips, 60 day reviews of energy bills (or more),education, an initial energy audit in the home are conducted. Energy Conservation Kits are issued to assist customers with achieving their goals.
Oklahoma 2022 0 Oregon 2022 5 Assurance 16 funds are used to integrate existing energy programs and enhance services for households with complex needs. Outcomes include reduced energy burden, improved payment patterns, energy conservation, and improved self-sufficiency. Sub-grantees consider community need and local program design when determining how to utilize Assurance 16 funding. Allowable uses include, but are not limited to, needs assessments, budget planning, arrearage management, energy education, energy saving incentives, and supplemental bill payment. All sub-grantees are required to include a description of how they will use Assurance 16 funding within their workplan application. At a minimum this includes eligibility criteria, benefit determination, description of services, and how these funds will be integrated within the overall LIHEAP program. Pennsylvania 2022 0 Puerto Rico 2022 5 We will develop virtual and face to face ativities through the web sites of the Government of Puerto Rico and the ADSEF, to educate clients with energy consumption or costs reductions. On-site activities will include NAP Family markets and food distributions in communities island wide. Rhode Island 2022 1.76 Clients are offered help in addressing their need for energy payment assistance. Through casework and coaching, clients are encouraged to reduce their energy usage and focus on improving their financial stability. Households take part in coaching/education to improve their energy savings in their homes. Households sign up for a free appliance management and weatherization audits. In FFY 2022, all seven Community Action Agencies will participate in the Assurance 16 program called Smart Optimal Solutions (SOS). South Carolina 2022 0 South Dakota 2022 2 The SD Office of Energy Assistance works in conjunction with other State agencies such as South Dakota Housing and Development Authority, South Dakota Public Utilities Commission, Adult Services and Aging, and other Social Services programs to ensure that literature and applications are made available. The SD Office of Energy Assistance also posts information on the website and participates in public health fairs and informational meetings sponsored by energy suppliers to help promote energy conservation. On the SD Office of Energy Assistance website there is a link that clients can click to view money and energy savings tips. Energy Saving tips brochures were also included in every pre-printed application that was mailed to households that received energy assistance the previous winter.For clients who continue to have difficulties managing their money, we refer them to other support services available to them such as consumer credit counseling or debt relief counseling. Tennessee 2022 2 Some agencies offer specific classes to clients to help reduce the energy burden, but we do not collect their attendance data. Energy saver flyers are provided to clients and one on one counseling takes place. Sub-grantees conduct Assurance 16 activities at their local agency. Examples are as follows: Provide energy conservation education in the form of Calendars, pamphlets and fact sheets at the time of application intake. This material will encourage energy conservation and provide the Low Income Home Energy Assistance client with the knowledge to reduce their home energy cost. Provide energy saving videos in lobby while waiting to be assisted and given energy guides. One on one measures will be spoken about to the beneficiary. A survey of this year’s beneficiaries to measure the effectiveness of last years measures. Partner with Green Spaces (local energy efficiency educator) to reduce energy usage. Green Spaces will conduct monthly workshops to those interested in reducing energy costs in their homes. We are focusing on Financial Case Management, Energy Conservation Education and Energy Saver Kits. Texas 2022 0 Utah 2022 0 No funds set aside for FFY22. Vermont 2022 0 Virginia 2022 0 Washington 2022 3.75 Each local agency has the option to provide conservation education to applicants. This can occur during the intake process, through a group work shop, or an in-home visit. Local agencies provide their conservation plan in their annual application to provide LIHEAP services which Commerce approves. Any conservation education services provided are done so equitably to all households served. Conservation education services include but are not limited to: energy conservation education classes; informational videos; handouts/flyers; energy conservation kits; review and education of household's energy usage and costs; hands on conservation exhibits; in-home visits in conjunction with weatherization home energy; efficiency assessments. West Virginia 2022 3 The Agency would like to do a credit/budget counseling for clients. The Agency is going to contact local Senior Citizen Centers to help administer the classes. Wisconsin 2022 0 The State of Wisconsin may, through contract with local LIHEAP providers and/or under contract with the Wisconsin Community Action Program and/or through arrangements with other service providers, engage in the following activities:
- Budget conseling, energy conservation training, copayment agreements, advocacy with fuel suppliers, household energy assessments and referrals.
- Support for services provided by leveraged funds. These services will include those provided under regular crisis assistance, but only when non-federal funds are used toward copayments, etc.
- Intensive case management targeted to households selected from those as "high heating costs compared to household income" and "high heating costs for dwelling type”.
- Educational classes may be offered through third-party contract agencies, utilities, state staff, or other qualified individuals.
Wyoming 2022 1 Some of these funds are used to purchase energy conservation educational materials. These materials are distributed by our Weatherization agencies to households receiving weatherization assistance, as well as by our LIEAP contractor. We believe that behaviors impact energy usage and as we weatherize the home to make it more energy efficient educating the household members about energy conservation as well as energy efficiency helps them be more conservative energy consumers overall. We also distribute our educational materials at application fairs and other public venues where LIEAP applicants/clients are likely to patron. We are also developing household budgeting/financial literacy training workshops for clients who demonstrate a pattern of regular risk for heating and power disconnects via a collaborative partnership with TANF and the Department of Workforce Services.