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Monday, May 2, 2016
ENP STAFF REPORTS
news@eastniagarapost.com


ALBANY -- As much as $3 million is available to help New Yorkers who have medical conditions that can be aggravated by extreme heat to buy and install air conditioning. Eligible households can apply for cooling assistance through the New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance's Home Energy Assistance Program beginning today.

"The heat and humidity during the height of the summer can be uncomfortable for some, but potentially life-threatening to others with medical conditions exacerbated by high temperatures," Gov. Andrew Cuomo said. "This program will ensure that some of the most vulnerable New Yorkers can remain safe and cool in their homes when the summer weather is at its worst."

Cooling assistance through the Home Energy Assistance Program is only available to those households which meet the program's income guidelines and include a member who suffers from a documented medical condition exacerbated by extreme heat.

Last summer, more than 4,100 households -- including 1,782 in Western New York -- received cooling assistance.

New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance Commissioner Samuel D. Roberts said, "It's important that anyone who may be eligible applies soon, so their air conditioning unit can be safely installed before the hot weather arrives. There's no reason for someone whose medical condition can be worsened by the heat to suffer through the summer when this help is available."

Applicants must provide medical documentation in writing, signed by a physician, physician's assistant or a nurse practitioner. The document must clearly indicate the need for an air conditioner and must be dated within the previous 12 months.

Cooling assistance will be provided on a first-come, first-served basis. Local departments of social services will accept applications through August 31, or until funding runs out, whichever comes first.

Information on where to apply in each county can be found at http://otda.ny.gov/programs/heap/HEAP-contacts.pdf.



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