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PNS Daily Newscast - August 7, 2020 

The State Attorney of NY moves to dissolve the NRA; an update on the potential wave of pandemic evictions.

2020Talks - August 7, 2020 

The Commission on Presidential Debates rejects Trump campaign's request for a fourth debate. Hawaii has a primary tomorrow, but there are only 8 vote service centers.

Help Available for Home Heating Bills this Holiday Season in NM

November 24, 2008

Albuquerque - During these tough economic times, many New Mexico families will be giving thanks this week for things they normally take for granted, like keeping the house warm this winter. Thankfully, for families struggling to pay home heating bills, more help is available this year: Congress recently authorized additional funding for the Low-Income Heating Assistance Program (LIHEAP). That means low-income families could be eligible for a one-time emergency payment of as much as $300, according to Kira Jones with Community Action New Mexico.

"That can be applied toward electricity, natural gas, propane, firewood--or even wood pellet bills, for people who have pellet stoves in more rural areas."

Households also have the right to negotiate a payment plan with their utility, Jones adds.

"If it's a matter of paying $10 a month or $20 a month for 12 or even 18 months, then that's what people need to propose."

She says if people run into trouble negotiating with their utility, they can file a complaint with the Public Regulation Commission. She also notes that many low-income households are protected by a winter shut-off moratorium in effect until March.

To receive the emergency payment, households must meet income eligibility requirements and complete an application. She says people who aren't eligible still may be able to get help from local churches, utilities or charities like the Salvation Army. Help to weatherize homes and improve energy efficiency is also available, she adds, from the state's Energy Smart program.

Eric Mack, Public News Service - NM