Individuals with Heat-Related Health Issues Can Apply to Receive Air Conditioners.
Albany, NY - May 11, 2018 - Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that $3 million is available to help New Yorkers suffering from serious health issues that are aggravated by extreme heat purchase an air conditioner. Individuals can apply now for cooling assistance through the Home Energy Assistance Program at their local department of social services.
"When the heat and humidity of summer arrives, it's important that vulnerable New Yorkers are able to stay safe and comfortable in their homes," Governor Cuomo said. "I encourage anyone with a medical condition that is worsened by high temperatures to apply now, so an air conditioner can be installed before the first heat wave hits."
The New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance, which oversees the program, has set aside $3 million in federal funding to provide an air conditioning unit or fan, to eligible households. Last year, 4,000 households received cooling assistance.
To qualify, applicants must meet existing HEAP eligibility criteria and income guidelines, which vary by household size, and have at least one member of the household that suffers from a documented medical condition exacerbated by extreme heat. For example, a household of four can earn up to $53,482 a year or $4,457 a month, and still qualify for assistance.
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.
Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance Commissioner Samuel D. Roberts said, "We know that for some of our fellow New Yorkers, the summertime heat can pose a grave risk and this assistance could be potentially lifesaving. But it is vital that anyone who may be eligible, but does not have an air conditioner or cannot afford to purchase one, apply as soon as possible."
Congressman Eliot Engel said, "Summers are getting hotter and the threat posed by heat stroke, especially for seniors, cannot be understated. I applaud Governor Cuomo for supporting HEAP and I encourage all eligible New Yorkers to take advantage of this program."
Congressman José Serrano said, "Anyone who has lived in New York knows how hot it can get in the City during the summer. High temperatures and heat waves can be a danger and even lethal for Seniors, people with serious medical conditions, and other vulnerable populations. This funding will help low-income individuals with health issues to purchase and install air conditioners to stay cool and sheltered from the heat at home. I encourage qualifying Bronxites to apply early for this help, available on a first-come first-served basis."
Congresswoman Nydia M. Velázquez said, "Like any form of extreme weather, the summer heat and humidity poses a serious threat for many of our City's most vulnerable seniors and working families. To this end, as we head into the summer months, I commend Governor Cuomo for taking proactive measures to help at-risk New Yorkers secure proper air conditioning. I will continue to do my part from the federal level to help families stay healthy and safe this summer."
Congressman Gregory W. Meeks said, "I appreciate Governor Cuomo's effort in planning and announcing this program. As summer is fast approaching, New Yorkers with medical conditions that make them vulnerable to heat-related illness should not have to fear the summer heat. I encourage all who may qualify to apply, take full advantage of this assistance program, and of course, to stay cool this summer."
Congressman Joe Crowley said, "Summer in New York City brings with it a sweltering heat that is unbearable for many of our most vulnerable residents. Cooling assistance will help alleviate the daily frustrations of those living with medical conditions provoked by the rising temperatures. I urge my constituents in Queens and the Bronx who are eligible for this program to apply now so they can receive accommodations before summer comes into full swing."
Congressman Brian Higgins said, "Federal HEAP resources help close the gap to ensure seniors and those in need can remain safe and healthy in their homes."
Congressman Paul Tonko said, "For New Yorkers with serious health concerns, including many of our seniors, high summer heat can be dangerous and even deadly. The risk of heat stroke and other illness is increasing for these vulnerable individuals as climate change drives temperatures higher and weather more extreme. My thanks to Governor Cuomo for championing this valuable support program that can help New Yorkers afford the cooling assistance they need to stay healthy and safe through the summer heat."
Congressman Sean Patrick Maloney said, "Older Americans and people who are sick shouldn't have to endure potentially life-threatening heat because they can't afford the high electricity costs associated with cooling their homes during a New York summer. I've been down in Washington fighting Republicans in Congress who are trying to kick people off this program - and I'm glad I've got a strong ally in Governor Cuomo who's also committed to helping these folks in need."
Congressman Adriano Espaillat said, "Extreme heat can be deadly, especially for our seniors and individuals with serious health issues. I commend Governor Cuomo on today's announcement that will help keep New Yorkers cool as we enter warmer weather months, and I encourage all eligible residents to apply for cooling assistance through the Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP) as soon as possible to ensure that they are able to participate in this vital program and stay cool through the summer."