OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – As the summer heat sets in, families across Oklahoma are preparing for their electric bills to rise.

A federally-funded program that helps low income families afford their utility bills is now accepting applications.

Oklahoma Human Services will begin accepting online applications for the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program.

Eligible households already receiving assistance through OKDHS can be pre-authorized to receive LIHEAP for the summer cooling period, which means they do not need to complete an application. Households that are not pre-authorized but currently receive assistance through OKDHS have been notified by mail and should apply online at OKDHSLive.org.

Organizers say only one payment per year, per household is allowed for the summer cooling program.

LIHEAP payments must be applied to the primary source of cooling or to reimburse for the cost to purchase or repair cooling equipment up to $150.

Organizers say Native American households may apply through OKDHSLive.org or through their tribal nation. However, tribal households cannot receive assistance from both OKDHS and their tribe during the same federal fiscal year.

LIHEAP AND LIHWAP INCOME ELIGIBILITY GUIDELINES

The maximum monthly gross income allowed per household size is:

  • 1 person: $1,396
  • 2 people: $1,888
  • 3 people: $2,379
  • 4 people: $2,871
  • 5 people: $3,363
  • 6 people: $3,855
  • 7 people: $4,347
  • 8 people: $4,839.

Anyone applying for the program should have the most recent cooling bill information for their home and utility supplier, their ID, Social Security number, and verification of income.