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Error delays at least 17 applicants from receiving energy assistance

Dialysis patient frustrated, contacts Call 6
Posted: 5:06 PM, May 29, 2018
Updated: 2018-05-30 02:12:23Z

INDIANAPOLIS—  Call 6 Investigates has uncovered an error that delayed at least 17 applicants from receiving energy assistance.

Felice Moore, a dialysis patient with end-stage renal disease, contacted Call 6 Investigates Kara Kenney after she experienced roadblocks in receiving the money.

“I’m on dialysis three times a week and I can’t work,” said Moore. “I need energy assistance to keep the air conditioning on all summer.”

Moore received a letter in March from the Energy Assistance Program notifying her she was approved to receive benefits.

However, months later she had not received the funds and was having difficulty getting a hold of anyone at the United Way of Central Indiana or the Indiana House and Community Develop Authority.

IHCDA administers the Energy Assistance Program from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, and the United Way of Central Indiana processes applications and delivers funding to approved applicants in Marion and Hendricks counties.

Moore said she finally reached a United Way worker who said Moore would not be getting energy assistance.

“She told me at that time, the checks are not going to be issued, something happened with the computer system,” said Moore.

Moore said she asked the worker to put the denial in writing, but that didn’t happen.

“Since I watch Channel 6, I thought, let me send them a letter or let me reach out to them and maybe they can make headway where I can’t,” said Moore. “Within 48 hours of you reaching out to them, they reached out to me, and the check actually arrived on Saturday.”

Call 6 Investigates contacted United Way spokesperson Ty Spisak who said 17 households were impacted by an error.

"This was not a system-wide problem,” said Spisak in an email to RTV6. “The client's benefit was part of a transmittal batch that had an error. The error had to be corrected and then the transmittal was resubmitted."

Spisak said both the United Way and IHCDA determined the error caused a delay in processing Moore and other applicant’s claims.

Each year, approximately 100,000 households apply and receive energy assistance in Indiana, according to IHCDA.

Applications for EAP are still being accepted until June 1 , said Spisak.

The United Way says since November of 2017, 17,649 households have applied and 15,689 have been approved for energy assistance.

1,479 households that applied were denied for being over the income requirements for the program or they did not present all the required documents , said Spisak.

As for Felice Moore, she’s relieved to now have the funds to stay cool all summer long.

“I’m very thankful, so thank you,” said Moore.

The amount of energy assistance benefit is based on household size and income, type of home, age of the applicant, and fuel source.

Income Requirements

Income eligibility for Energy Assistance benefits (heating, crisis and summer cooling) is limited to households with a combined annual income at or below 150% of the Federal Poverty Guidelines.  See Chart Below.

Household Size Monthly Income Annual Income (2017-2018)

Size of household

150 Percent of HHS Poverty Guidelines (one-month income)

150 Percent of HHS Poverty Guidelines (three-month income)

1

$1,508

$4,523

2

$2,030

$6,090

3

$2,553

$7,658

4

$3,075

$9,225

5

$3,598

$10,793

6

$4,120

$12,360

7

$4,643

$13,928

8

$5,165

$15,495

In order to process an application the following MUST be provided for each household: 

  • Name, Date of Birth and Social Security card (exceptions may apply) for all household members.
  • Valid Driver’s License or Photo Identification card for all household member(s) present at the time of application.
  • All homeowners must provide proof of ownership.
  • Copy of the current heating bill AND electric bill in the name of a household member 18 and older.
  • Renters must provide either a copy of the current Lease Agreement (dated within the last 24 months) OR a Landlord Affidavit completed and signed by applicant AND by the renter’s landlord.
  • If a current Lease Agreement is not available print a Landlord Affidavit and have your landlord complete and sign. 
  • All household members age 18 and older must submit proof of income for the past 12 months.
  • Any household member age 18 or older that worked at the same job for the past 12 months may submit their most recent Pay Stub.
  • Any household member age 18 or older receiving Social Security, SSI, or SSDI may bring an Award Letter or bank statement clearly showing the Social Security deposit amount.
  • Any household member age 18 or older that has no income for the past 12 months must bring a Work One Wage and Unemployment statement.
  • Any household member age 18 or older that received Unemployment Income during the past 12 months must bring in a Work One Wage and Unemployment statement. 
  • Any household member age 18 or older that worked some (but not all) of the past 12 months must bring a Work One Wage and Unemployment statement.
  • High School and Full Time College Students that are 18 and older must submit a current class schedule, or current report card, that shows their full time status. (College students must have 12 or more credit hours).
  • Any military veterans must provide proof of veteran status.

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