With the effects of COVID-19 still impacting communities with job loss, layoff, health issues, struggling businesses and more, the Energy Assistance Program has extended the opportunity to apply for assistance from May 31, 2021 to September 1, 2021 in an effort to help families catch up on energy bills.

Across Minnesota, approximately 360,000 households are way behind in their utility payments, owing approximately $135 million in unpaid debt, according to West Central Minnesota Communities Action.

The Energy Assistance Program at WCMCA may be able to help families that have fallen deeply in debt by paying for part of their heating and electricity costs. Eligibility is based on income, $65,228 yearly for a family of four, household size, and actual cost of heating your home for the previous winter. Homeowners, renters, and households living in subsidized housing may be eligible.

For more information or an application, contact WCMCA at 1-800-492-4805 and ask for the Energy Assistance Department or visit the website at www.wcmca.org.

Funding for the Energy Assistance Program is provided by the Minnesota Department of Commerce and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.