Applying for energy assistance - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Applying for energy assistance

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WATERLOO (KWWL) -

Despite the colder weather, this week marks the deadline Iowa utility companies can start turning off people's power for not paying their bills.

Even though it might feel like winter, April 1 is the deadline utility companies can turn off your power for overdue bills.

If you need help, it's better to apply now than wait til you're disconnected.

Every year, thousands of households apply for energy assistance to help pay an overdue utility bill.

Operation Threshold Director, Barbara Grant, said if you need help, she recommends applying sooner rather than later.

"They should come in and apply as soon as possible. We can take applications til the end of April, but that assistance is available first-come, first-serve," Grant said.

Grant said if your power gets turned off, it's nearly impossible to set it up on payments, and Operation Threshold is there to help.

"Once your power is shut off, then typically I think you have to pay the back bill in order to get it turned back on, which makes it harder," Grant said.

Grant said the average payment is $425, and last year, they accepted nearly 5,000 applications in Black Hawk, Buchanan, and Grundy counties for energy assistance.

Grant said April is their busy time, with many people requesting last-minute help, "so, the sooner they can get their applications in, the better. That can go towards paying down or buying down the back bill and potentially prevent the disconnection."

To apply for assistance, you can click here.

Energy assistance through Operation Threshold is income-based.

If you're hoping to apply, you need to have a copy of your utility bill, a disconnect notice if you have one, proof of your income in the last 30 days, and your social security number.

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