Keep the heat on this winter

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Families struggling to pay winter heating bills can get help from New Mexico’s Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program, according to Melissa Amaro, collections clerk at the Socorro Electric Cooperative office.

Qualifying low-income families whose current accounts are paid in full can apply for a moratorium on heating bills from now until March 15, Amaro said.

This help applies to whatever heating source the family depends on — electricity, propane, firewood, wood pellets or natural gas.

In order to qualify for the program, people have to meet certain income and household criteria. Application forms can be obtained from the New Mexico Human Services Department office at 1014 N. California St.

Amaro can help people fill out the forms at the SEC office, or they can go see Flora Baca at the Mid-west Community Action Program office on Spring Street. Baca can be reached at 835-0899.

People whose utilities have already been disconnected or who are almost out of firewood, wood pellets or propane should contact the Human Services Department to find out if they are eligible for Crisis LIHEAP help.

For more information on LIHEAP, call the SEC office at 835-0560 and ask for Melissa Amaro, or call the Human Services Department at 835-0342.