At CUB we’re preparing for another busy winter. Are you ready?
In the first half of 2014, CUB’s crew handled 2,507 complaints/inquiries from gas and electric customers reeling from polar vortex price spikes. That’s a 79 percent increase from the previous year.
Despite this week’s burst of winter, the cold season isn’t expected to be as bad as last (hopefully). The federal government predicts gas/electric consumption and heating bills will be down a bit. But nobody thinks heating bills are low in Illinois. That’s where we come in.
In preparation for winter, follow CUB’s energy efficiency tips, join our free online utility-bill cutting service, CUB Energy Saver, and visit our special online Energy Efficiency center, a one-stop-shop for tips and incentives in Illinois. Also, most utilities provide financial assistance for families who are experiencing particular hardship paying utility bills. Check it out:
For all Illinois customers:
- The Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP). Administered by the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, LIHEAP is designed to help eligible low-income households pay for winter energy service.
For customers in northern Illinois/Chicagoland
- ComED CARE programs. ComEd’s programs provide financial assistance on electric bills for qualified customers.
- Peoples Gas Share the Warmth. Administered by the Community and Economic Development Association (CEDA), Share the Warmth provides heating grants to limited and fixed-income households. Eligible customers who make a payment toward their bills receive matching grants of up to $200. (North Shore Gas customers can click here).
- Nicor Gas Sharing Program. Qualified residential customers can receive a one-time annual Sharing Grant of $350 or $400, with no requirement to pay back. The program is administered through the Salvation Army.
For customers in South or Central Illinois:
- Warm Neighbors Cool Friends. This Energy Assistance Foundation program provides year-round energy bill payment assistance and home weatherization to make harsh winters and hot summers bearable for families in need. Eligible households can receive up to $700 a year to help pay for energy costs ($350 during the heating season and $350 during the cooling season).
- Ameren Payment Assistance. Ameren Illinois offers several forms of financial assistance, including short-term, one-time payment extensions and fixed monthly payment agreements to settle past balances.