LCCAA Opening New HEAP Offices This Week

posted 1/13/19 -- As winter tightens its grip on Lorain County, LCCAA will expand its Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP) opening two new satellite offices this week. Appointments can be made at the new and existing locations by calling 1-855-806-9620, 24 hours a day.

HEAP provides eligible individuals with financial assistance with their utility bills. To be eligible for HEAP you must live at or below 175% of the Federal Poverty Line. HEAP benefits are applied to your utility account during the winter months. The Winter Crisis program operates between Nov. 1 and March 31 and also assists residents who have had their utilities turned off.

“These new offices will allow us to better serve residents in need,” said Planning and Community Service Director Frank Prihoda, adding that the program is not impacted by the partial shutdown of the federal government.

A new office will open inside the Lorain County Community College campus in North Ridgeville on Thursday, Jan. 17. Another office will open inside Ohio Means Jobs Lorain County at 42495 North Ridge Road, Elyria, on Friday, Jan. 18.

“Transportation is a huge issue in our county and we are hoping this will also help alleviate long lines for our walk-in clients,” said Cindy Hicks, Community Services Specialist.

The North Ridgeville office, at LCCC’s campus at 32121 Lorain Road will be open only on Thursdays from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Walk-ins will be seen in the morning and appointments in the afternoon

At Ohio Means Jobs, customers should sign in at the reception desk and an advocate will call them. The office will be open every other Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Walk-ins will be seen in the morning and appointments in the afternoon. Upcoming dates for this satellite location include Friday, Jan. 18 and Friday, Feb. 1.

Like all LCCAA HEAP offices, the two new locations will be closed for lunch from 12 to 1 p.m. daily. You must be seated with an advocate 45 minutes before closing in order to complete your application.

Both offices will also be able to process applications and updates to the PIPP Plus Program. PIPP Plus customers must have a household income at or below 150% of the Federal Poverty Line and be customers of a regulated utility. PIPP customers pay a percentage of their income to their utility companies at a consistent level year round.

LCCAA’s three existing locations will continue to operate: the administrative office at 936 Broadway in downtown Lorain, in the Wellington Village Hall, 115 Willard Memorial Square and at St Agnes Church, 611 Lake Ave., Elyria.

At the Lorain office, walk-in hours are Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Appointments are available all day long as well. The Wellington Office sees walk-ins only in the morning and by appointment in the afternoon. Wellington is only open on Wednesday from 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. during the crisis period.

The Elyria office is open on Mondays and Tuesdays with an emphasis on walk-ins. Walk ins are received on Mondays from 8 to 11 a.m. and all day on Tuesdays from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Appointments are only available on Monday afternoons from 1 to 4 p.m.

LCCAA's automated appointment line includes a recorded message describing the documents needed for the appointment. Those needing to do so may also speak to a representative during regular office hours. Residents who have received a disconnect notice are especially urged to call the HEAP hotline at 1-855-806-9620 to make an appointment. The automated line is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Utility companies will hold your disconnect if you have made an appointment to determine your eligibility. However, your appointment must be no less than 48 hours before your disconnect is scheduled and you must keep your appointment to maintain that hold on your account. Rescheduling removes the hold and you may lose service.