Pine Bluff Jefferson County 
                       Economic Opportunities Commission

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Energy Assistance

Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program

The largest program operated by Pine Bluff Jefferson County EOC, the energy assistance program helps low income families pay over $1 million in energy bills during the heating and cooling season. Customers are helped with natural gas, electric bills, and bulk fuels such as: propane, fuel oil, wood, and kerosene.

Boy looking outside the window to the snow Many of the households are vulnerable families with members that are elderly, disabled, or have small children. The agency operates a year round toll-free hotline that gives information about the program to vendors, agencies, and prospective consumers. This information to consumers may include program guidelines, application procedures, site locations, Public Service Commission regulations regarding utility services, and more. 

MAY 20, 2016  

Assurance 16 Program Workshop Series

The Assurance 16 program offers case management services which focuses on 4 areas; goal building, household budgeting, energy conservation, and utility consumption.  Clients receive household budget exercise over a 90 day period, a needs assessment, energy education lesson plans, budget counseling, vendor payment arrangements and subsequent office and/or home visits necessary to carry out the plan and goals agreed upon.  Eligibility requirements are that of regular Case Management which is that the participant falls below 125% of the Federal Poverty Level.
 ENERGY EDUCATIONEnergy Education will provide information and brochures to educate participants on energy consumption and conservation as well as vendor assistance.  The workshop will be facilitated with energy representatives from Entergy, CenterPoint and/or other local vendors in attendance so they may disseminate information, provide advice, answer questions and present activities that participants can incorporate in their household to reduce consumption, conserve energy and lower household costs.   WEATHERIZATION EDUCATIONWeatherization staff will describe and/or demonstrate a weatherization audit explaining benefits of standard weatherization measures and answer questions.  Additionally, the staff will present activities that participants can integrate in their household so they can reduce consumption to conserve energy and lower household costs and participants will receive a self weatherization kit to initiate immediate savings.   MONEY MANAGEMENTThis workshop will assist participants with attaining skills to set and achieve goals and acquire basic financial skills.  Participants will be provided assistance in creating and maintaining a budget, stretching food dollars, money and budget tips, financial planning, credit counseling, as well as an introduction to homeownership.  Participants will be introduced to banking services and they will be familiarized with opening and maintaining a checking account.  After completing the Money Management segment, participants will gain skills to become more money savvy and financially empowered as well as homebuyer educated. GOAL ACHIEVEMENTParticipants will design a plan to set and meet short and long term goals.  These goals will encompass each of the other segments, Energy Education, Weatherization Education, Money Management and Program Incentive energy payments.  Also, participants will consider the needs and best interest of the household to successfully achieve goals.  Each goal achieved will help to keep participants motivated, provide additional encouragement and enhance empowerment.  Program incentives will be threefold:  assist with energy cost, enhance program persistence and increase opportunity of maintaining household budgets. PROGRAM INCENTIVESEach participant will be provided four intervals of incentives, a $50 payment toward the energy bill of choice, after attending each workshop. Program incentives are to assist with energy cost, encourage persistence and participation as well as to improve potential of the household budget.  In addition, to replace nonworking and/or outdated appliances (refrigerator, stove or air conditioner) a limited and budgeted number of energy efficient appliances will be purchased for a limited number of participants that successfully complete each component of the Assurance 16 Case Management Program. 

The Cost of Home Heating is a problem for many low-income households in Arkansas and Pine Bluff Jefferson County EOC may be able to help.


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