Here are some resources that may be helpful to individuals who need help paying utilities. The resources are available through state and public housing authorities.
Description: This program is a Federal Communications Commission (FCC) program that provides temporary discount on monthly broadband bills for qualifying low-income households. Eligible households can receive up to a $50/month discount on broadband service and associated equipment rentals and a one-time discount of up to $100 for a laptop, tablet, or desktop computer (with a copayment of more than $10 but less than $50). Only one monthly service discount and one device discount is allowed per household.
Eligibility: Household income at or below 135% of the federal poverty guidelines OR any member of the household:
- Qualifies for Lifeline benefits through participation in SNAP, Medicaid, Supplemental Security Income, Federal Public Housing Assistance, or Veterans and Survivors Pension Benefit;
- Experienced a substantial loss of income since February 29, 2020 with a total household income in 2020 at or below $99,000 for single filers and $198,000 for joint filers;
- Received a federal Pell Grant in the current award year;
- Received approval for benefits under the free and reduced-price school lunch program or the school breakfast program, including through the USDA Community Eligibility Provision, in the 2019-2020 or 2020-2021 school year;
- Meets the eligibility criteria for a participating provider’s existing low-income or COVID-19 program, and that provider received FCC approval for its eligibility verification process.
Dates: Projected to open later in April, and will stay open until funds run out or six months after the Department of Health and Human Services declares an end to the COVID-19 health emergency, whichever is sooner.
Description: The purpose of the Healthy at Home Relief Fund:
- Assist Kentucky tenants with RENT and/or UTILITIES to keep them housed during the COVID-19 pandemic.
- Allow landlords to get substantial payments for back rent.
- Reduce the volume of eviction cases in Kentucky courts.
Assistance with back rent and utility bills cans be calculated going back to April 1, 2020. Assistance will be paid as lump sum payments to landlords and utilities.
Eligibility for Tenants:
- Any Kentucky county outside of Fayette County and Jefferson County.
- Experienced income reduction/loss or other economic hardship due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
- Depending on past due bills, tenant applicants may seek assistance with rent, utilities, or both.
- IF SEEKING RENTAL ASSISTANCE: At risk of eviction as evidenced by a past due letter from landlord, a pending court eviction, eviction notice, or similar document.
- IF SEEKING UTILITY ASSTANCE: Past due on utility payments as documented in the most recent utility bill. (Utilities paid by the landlord are not eligible for assistance).
- Gross household income before taxes cannot exceed 80% Area Median Income (AMI).
- Are requesting assistance for their primary residence (address where the applicant lives and sleeps).
- If a tenant received some type of short-term assistance, this program cannot duplicate payment for a given month but can assist with rent for other months.
- If a tenant receives monthly rent subsidy (such as Section 8), they are not eligible for HHERF rent assistance but CAN get help with utilities.
- Those living with family and paying rent informally are not eligible.
- Those who own a trailer home and owe rent for a lot are eligible.
Eligibility for Landlords:
- Must forgive late fees, penalties, interest, and legal/court fees related to non-payment of rent.
- Have a current written lease or sign a lease with their tenant.
- Must agree not to evict for any past rent due prior to April 1, 2020.
- Must agree to give 30 days’ notice for any future eviction, not to be initiated until at least 45 days after assistance concludes.
- Must agree to terms of the HHERF settlement agreement and submit all necessary paperwork.
Dates: Application portal opened on February 15, 2021 and will close once all funds are expended.
Description: Additional funds for Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program. LIHEAP assists low-income households with their heating and cooling energy costs, bill payment assistance, energy crisis assistance, weatherization and energy-related home repairs.
Eligibility: State, Territory, Tribe
Closing Date: None Listed
Description: The Department for Local Government (DLG) has up to $38 million available for utility relief from the Community Development Block Grant Coronavirus Response (CDBG-CV) program. Local governments may request up to $200,000 to provide utility relief to Kentuckians in their jurisdiction. If approved, local governments must then partner with a community action agency to assist with funding administration. For this process, Kentucky’s 15 Area Development Districts (ADD) are good resources and have received training on the program from DLG. They can assist units of local government, local non-profit community service providers and eligible Kentuckians with their applications and administer funds.
Eligibility: All cities and counties are eligible to apply for the funds with the exception of Ashland, Bowling Green, Covington, Elizabethtown, Henderson, Hopkinsville, Lexington-Fayette County, Louisville/Jefferson County Metro Government, and Owensboro.
Closing Date: June 30th, 2022