More Heating Help

The initiative provides more affordable reconnection terms to Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) recipients who are customers of Ameren, Nicor Gas and Peoples Energy.

“We want to do everything we can to keep families healthy and safe during this cold winter season. The Good Samaritan Initiative will help thousands of Illinois households that have been disconnected get their service restored at an affordable cost,” said
Governor Blagojevich.

Thousands of low-income households across the state have been disconnected from utility service due to heating bill arrearages. The Good Samaritan Initiative will help many of these disconnected low-income customers by reducing the amount that the utilities require to restore service.

LIHEAP beneficiaries, whose outstanding balances are too high to be covered by a LIHEAP grant alone but less than $3,000, will need to pay only $250 or 20 percent of the remaining balance, whichever is less, to have their service restored. Customers must also set up payment plans with their utilities for the remainder of the arrearages.

The agreement with Ameren, Nicor Gas and Peoples Energy to make the Good Samaritan reconnection terms available for the 2005-2006 heating season was announced by the Governor in October 2005.