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Governor Sonny Perdue Calls On Bush Administration To Release Low Income Home Energy Assistance Emergency Funds To Help Low Income Georgians With Increasing Home Heating Costs

Friday, January 24, 2003  Contact: Office of Communications 404-651-7774


Atlanta - Governor Sonny Perdue today called on President George Bush and U. S. Secretary of Health and Human Services Tommy Thompson to release Low Income Home Energy Assistance (LIHEAP) emergency funds.

"Rapid drops in temperature and escalating home heating prices are forcing many Georgians to make difficult choices between paying for heat this winter and making other essential purchases," said Governor Sonny Perdue.

"A portion of our nation's $300 million LIHEAP contingency funds should be released now to help lower income Georgians," added Governor Perdue. Based on allocation formulas, Georgia is projected to receive approximately $1.4 million in LIHEAP funds.

LIHEAP contingency funds are an important source of protection for low income households. LIHEAP funds allow the federal government to target resources during energy emergencies to those households who are in most need of assistance. LIHEAP also helps eligible families pay the cost of heating and insulating their homes in the winter and cooling their homes in the summer. Approximately 4.6 million low income U. S. households receive LIHEAP assistance each year.

"Residential heating oil prices are projected to be as much as 20% higher this winter than rates have averaged over the past five years. As Congress continues its appropriation process, we are calling on the Bush Administration to take action today when Georgians need it," said Governor Perdue.