HARRISBURG, Pa., Governor Tom Corbett announced today that Pennsylvanians who need assistance paying home heating bills now have additional time, through April 26, to apply for financial help through the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program, commonly referred to as LIHEAP.

"Each year we work to set our budget for the LIHEAP program in anticipation of the upcoming heating season," Corbett said. "At the beginning of each season there are many unknowns, including the severity of the weather and fuel prices, but through running an efficient program and via prudent planning, we are now able to extend the program by nearly a month."

The federally-funded program was slated to end March 29, but the application deadline has been extended through April 26, 2013.

To-date, the LIHEAP program has received 485,689 applications for cash assistance to help low-income households pay for home heating fuel and utility bills. It has also received 86,551 applications for crisis grants, which assist with heating emergencies such as a furnace failure, unexpected fuel shortages or utility terminations.

Cash grants are based on household income, family size, type of heating fuel and region. In addition to proof of income and household size, applicants must provide a recent bill or a statement from their utility company or fuel dealer verifying their customer status and the type of fuel used.

Applicants can apply for a LIHEAP grant online at www.compass.state.pa.us.

LIHEAP applications are also available at county assistance offices, local utility companies and community service agencies, such as Area Agencies on Aging or community action agencies.

For more information on the LIHEAP program, or to download an application, visit the Department of Public Welfare website at www.dpw.state.pa.us and click on "For Adults," or call the toll-free hotline at 1-866-857-7095.

Media contact:Christine Cronkright, Governor's Press Office, 717-783-1116 Carey Miller or Anne Bale, DPW, 717-425-7606

Editor's Note: Eligibility guidelines for the 2012-13 LIHEAP season are set at 150 percent of the federal poverty income guidelines. The chart below shows the maximum income allowed for eligibility based on household size. Each additional person in the household adds $5,940 to the maximum income allowed for eligibility. Household size Maximum Income 1 $16,755 2 $22,695 3 $28,635 4 $34,575 5 $40,515 6 $46,455 7 $52,395 8 $58,335 9 $64,275 10 $70,215

SOURCE Pennsylvania Office of the Governor -0- 03/22/2013

/Web Site: http://www.governor.state.pa.us CO: Pennsylvania Office of the Governor ST: Pennsylvania SU: STP PRN DC82160 0000 03/22/2013 18:25:48 EDT http://www.prnewswire.com