Westfield Newsroom

Kerry fights to protect home heating aid

BOSTON – Senator John Kerry and his New England colleagues today introduced legislation to protect home heating assistance for families and seniors across New England this winter.

The Protect LIHEAP Act would fund the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) at $4.7 billion for FY2012, maintaining the same level of funding from last year and ensuring Massachusetts’ most vulnerable are protected.  Senator Kerry is an original cosponsor.
“As temperatures continue to drop, it’s unconscionable to leave Massachusetts families vulnerable to another New England winter,” said Sen. Kerry.  “LIHEAP is the lifeline those families need to keep their loved ones safe and protected, and when the consequences could be catastrophic, we simply cannot ask them to suffer through with anything less than our full-throated efforts to get them the help that need.”
In November, Senator Kerry sent a letter to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, requesting that they maintain funding for the Massachusetts in the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) at the Fiscal Year 2011 level, $5.1 billion, or at the very least, at the $3.5 billion level based off the average of the $3.6 billion and $3.4 billion the Senate and House budgeted for FY2012, respectively, in any upcoming Continuing Resolution.
In October, Senator Kerry continued his efforts, and asked President Barack Obama to help protect Massachusetts families and seniors who depend on home heating oil aid during bitter cold New England winters by preserving the $5.1 billion for the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) in the President’s FY2013 budget.
Additionally, in September, Senator Kerry and the Massachusetts delegation also made their case to Senate and House Leadership, in a letter expressing their support for funding levels to be maintained for the Low Income Home Energy Heating Assistance Program (LIHEAP) for the FY2012 budget.

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