Grants Available for Direct Help to Vermonters who Suffered Economic Hardship Due to the Pandemic
MONTPELIER, Vt. – Vermont utilities are reminding their customers that help is available for those struggling to pay existing and past bills. Vermonters financially impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic can apply for two grant programs for renters and homeowners to help with overdue utility bills. Customers may be eligible for tens of thousands of dollars through these programs, and should apply now before money runs out:
- Vermont Emergency Rental Assistance Program (VERAP) provides federal grant money for qualified renters to help pay their past due and ongoing utility bills and rent.
Learn more and apply at https://vtutilityhelp.com or by calling (833) 488-3727.
- Vermont Homeowner Assistance Program (VT HAP) provides federal grant money for qualified homeowners to help pay up to $30,000 of their past due utility bills, mortgage, and association fees. Learn more and apply at https://vermonthap.vhfa.org/ or by calling (833) 221-4208.
Customers who have past due arrearages are encouraged to apply through VERAP or VT HAP, or contact their utility directly to set up a payment plan. Contact information is available at each of the utilities’ websites:
- Vermont Electric Co-Op, www.vermontelectric.coop
- Washington Electric Co-Op, www.washingtonelectric.coop
- Burlington Electric Department, www.burlingtonelectric.com
- VGS, www.vgsvt.com
- Green Mountain Power, www.greenmountainpower.com
- Hyde Park, www.villageofhydepark.com/utilities
- Stowe Electric, www.stoweelectric.com
- Customers of Barton Electric Department, Enosburg Falls Electric Department, Hardwick Electric Department, Jacksonville Electric Company, Johnson Water & Light Department, Ludlow Electric Light Department, Lyndonville Electric Department, Morrisville Water & Light, Northfield Electric Department, Orleans Electric Department, and Swanton Village Electric can visit www.vppsa.com for utility contact information.
GMP, BED, and VGS also have ongoing Energy Assistance Programs (EAP) for qualified low-income customers. GMP customers with past due balances can apply through the Department for Children and Families at https://dcf.vermont.gov/benefits/eap/GMP. BED’s Energy Assistance Program offers assistance to income-qualified customers in the form of a monthly bill credit of 12.5 percent, and customers can learn more at https://burlingtonelectric.com/assistance. VGS’s Energy Assistance Program provides a 20 percent discount on natural gas bills for qualified residential customers. Full details are available at https://vgsvt.com/savings/assistance-programs/.