SEC is again participating in the Cooling Assistance program this year
SEC is again participating in the Cooling Assistance program this year. The maximum benefit amount is $300 which has not changed from previous years. There are some important changes occurring this year, which are:
- Credit Authorization forms will not be required for DSS to process member’s assistance
- Anyone who qualifies for the benefit will automatically receive the maximum benefit amount
- DSS will issue the check for the full amount even if it causes the member’s account to have a credit balance
- Tracking of the Cooling Assistance benefits will be from the internal check stubs instead of from the Credit Authorization forms
- A supplemental undetermined amount through the CARES Act is in the process of being approved by the state
- Anyone who qualified for Heating, Cooling, or Crisis for the most recent seasons will automatically qualify for the supplemental program amount
By opting out of receiving the Credit Authorization forms, we are eliminating an unnecessary step for the DSS workers this season and helping our members get payment assistance funds faster. There is also an additional proposed assistance program being discussed from the CARES Act that will hopefully help members who do not meet the income qualifications for the Heating, Cooling, or Crisis programs. SEC will keep members informed when more details on this possibility is available later this summer.
Please be aware that there are other assistance programs that could be available. The best resource for them is to dial 211 to learn more about the assistance options in their area.