Months after applying for energy bill assistance, Euclid man still waits for benefits

Published: Apr. 27, 2022 at 11:05 PM EDT
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EUCLID, Ohio (WOIO) - Louis Singer of Euclid applied for the federal Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP) back in October, but he has yet to receive his credit after going back and forth with the state agency that runs the program in Ohio.

Singer supplied 19 News was several documents from the Ohio Department of Development, which oversees the HEAP program. It shows that he applied in October, and in January was told to submit more materials for review, which he says he did.

But still, he has yet to receive a credit to his energy bill with no explanation as to why he’s not been approved, despite the fact he received the benefits on time each of the last few years.

“I’m in limbo. I call, I write emails... no response,” Singer told 19 News. “Answer the phone! Call people back. That’s all I’m asking. If I could talk to somebody. I have a phone number that, if someone answers they hang up on you.”

19 News reached out to the communications office at the Department of Development multiple times for comment.

After two emails, sent one week apart, and a voicemail, a spokesperson replied.

He said he couldn’t comment on Singer’s situation specifically, but did request we put Singer in touch with him to discuss his benefits.

Singer said he’s been unable to work for the last few years, leading to financial hardship. He still has heat in his home, but he pays out of pocket. As a result, he told 19 News he is unable to pay down his other bills.

Even so, he tries to keep costs down by capping his thermostat at 68 degrees.

We spoke to him on a chilly April night in which temperatures are expected to drop into the low-30s.

“I get under a lot of covers. My mother made Afghans so we curl up in those,” he said.

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