News From Congressman Frank LoBiondo

LoBiondo Petitions Bush to Release Additional LIHEAP Funding
Urges Increase in Funding for Home Energy Assistance Program in Next Year?s Budget

WASHINGTON, D.C.?Concerned with the record high prices of home heating oil, U.S. Congressman Frank A. LoBiondo (NJ-02) has petitioned President Bush to release the remaining $20 million in contingency funds under the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) and to include $5.1 billion in the 2009 budget for the program. According to the Energy Information Administration, heating oil prices will be 10 to 22 percent higher on average this year, with levels reaching near $3.50 per gallon in New Jersey. LoBiondo and 85 of his House colleagues wrote the President in a bipartisa n letter.

?Winter is here and, with the rising prices in heating oil, I am deeply concerned some South Jersey households will struggle to heat their homes. LIHEAP funding is critically-important for those who would otherwise be forced to sacrifice the necessities of life such as food, rent, and prescription drugs to pay heating costs,? said LoBiondo. ?Record high energy prices necessitate increased program resources to ensure that no family is forced to suffer through a severe winter without heat. I urge the President to release the remaining funding for this year?s LIHEAP program so that the states and municipalities can help those in greatest need.?

LIHEAP is a federal block grant program that provides states with annual funding to operate home energy assistance programs for low-income households. In addition to helping to pay energy bills for low-income families and the elderly, LIHEAP helps to fund energy crisis intervention programs, low-cost residential weatherization and other energy-related home repairs.

More information and the application procedures for receiving LIHEAP assistance in New Jersey is available at www.state.nj.us/dca/dcr/hea/liheapfact_income.shtml.
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