Challenges with utilities can result in someone becoming homeless and once homeless, can be a significant barrier to getting them back into permanent housing. Below are some resources for providers to help navigate clients through these challenges.
- Help with Utility Problems – CTLawHelp.org
- Utility Problems with Landlords – CTLawHelp.org
- How to Keep Your Lights and Gas Turned On – CTLawHelp.org
- 2-1-1 Energy/Utility Assistance Info Sheet – United Way
State of Connecticut
Connecticut Energy Assistance Program (CEAP)
The Connecticut Energy Assistance Program (CEAP) is designed to help offset the winter heating costs of Connecticut’s lower income households, specifically those households whose income falls at or below 60 percent of the state median income. CEAP is funded by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) Block Grant. The Connecticut Department of Social Services administers CEAP, in collaboration with its partners, Community Action Agencies across the state.
- CEAP Crisis Assistance Program
A one-time benefit in winter heating assistance for CEAP deliverable fuel heated households who have exhausted their CEAP Basic Benefits and are unable to secure primary heat.
- CEAP Safety Net Services
Addresses the heating needs of CEAP deliverable fuel-heated households who have exhausted their Basic Benefits and Crisis Assistance Benefits and are in a life-threatening situation.
Utility Company Programs
Many utility companies offer support to their customers through programs such as past due balance forgiveness, matching payment programs in partnership with CEAP, shutoff protection, budget payment plans (spreads out costs into 12 equal installments), regular payment plans, special payment arrangements, etc.
- Eversource: New Start Forgiveness Program, Matching Payment Program, Winter Protection Plan
- United Illuminating (UI): Forgiveness Program, Matching Payment Plan, Winter Protection Plan
- Connecticut Natural Gas (CNG): Matching Payment Plan, Budget Payment Plan, Special Payment Arrangements
- Southern Connecticut Gas: Matching Payment Plan, Budget Payment Plan, Special Payment Arrangements
Community Action Agencies
Community Action Agencies (CAAs) administer the state’s CEAP programs, however providers should still check with their local community action agency to see if there are other utility assistance programs in that area. CAAs address the needs of low-income people, providing energy and weatherization assistance, and much more.
- Connecticut Association for Community Action provides a list of CAAs in Connecticut.
2-1-1 has many resources available to help providers and clients find utility assistance along with support in navigating through utility challenges.
- Energy Assistance/Utilities Info Sheet
- CT Directory: Electric Service Assistance
- CT Directory: Heating Fuel Payment Assistance
Operation Fuel provides a one-time grant of up to $500.00 to assist families with their energy bills. To find a partner agency (fuel bank), please use the Fuel Bank Finder or call Connecticut’s free information and referral service, 2-1-1.
The Home Energy Solutions – Income-Eligible (HES-IE) Program
The Home Energy Solutions – Income-Eligible (HES-IE) program provides valuable weatherization measures to help renters or homeowners reduce their energy bills by making their homes more energy efficient. This program is implemented through a partnership between Connecticut government, businesses, and nonprofits.
Connecticut Soldiers’, Sailors’ and Marines’ Fund
Honorably discharged veterans who served during specified periods, and their families, may be eligible for emergency assistance that may include utility or energy bills.
Contact local churches to see if they have funds available for utility assistance. Some churches have formal programs while others may be open to supporting a client individually through special funds or by doing a special collection.
Area Specific Utility Assistance Programs
Many CT communities have their own nonprofits or funds to help residents of that area with utility bills. The local Community Action Agency may know of resources available in your community. You can also look through 2-1-1’s Electric Service Assistance Directory or their Heating Fuel Payment Assistance Directory.
Content Last Reviewed: 9/1/18