Energy Assistance Programs

Budget Billing

All residential customers may contact their electric or natural gas company and request budget billing at any time. Each monthly bill will be the same amount. The company may adjust the bill four times a year, up or down, depending on the customer's usage.

Customer Assistance Program (CAP)

CAPs can lower your monthly utility bill. CAPs may also remove the amount you already owe. The different CAP names are shown beside the company names below. The company works with the customer to determine what the customer can pay verses the cost of energy used.

Customer Assistance Referral and Evaluation Program (CARES)

The CARES program helps customers with special needs. CARES may help you find ways to pay your utility bill. For example, special needs are customers who are experiencing family emergencies, divorce, unemployment, or medical emergencies. The goal is to provide support and direction to help customers pay their utility bills.

Low-Income Usage Reduction Program (LIURP)

LIURP helps low-income residential customers lower the amount of electricity or natural gas used each month. Typically, the company may install energy saving features in your home to help reduce bills. For example, smaller bills means your payment covers a greater portion of the bill, or perhaps covers the whole bill.

LIURP Secretarial Letter - Initiative to review and revise the Existing LIURP Regulations at 52 Pa. Code §§ 58.1 – 58.18. Docket No. L-2016-2557886. Dated December 16, 2016.

Hardship Funds

Utility company hardship funds provide cash assistance to utility customers to help them pay their utility bills. Hardship funds provide assistance grants to customers who "fall through the cracks" of other financial assistance programs, or to those who still have a critical need for assistance after the other resources have been exhausted. The funds make payments directly to companies on behalf of eligible customers.

Assistance Qualifications

Customers must meet certain income limits and be payment-troubled to qualify for CAP, CARES, LIURP and Hardship Funds. Payment-troubled usually means customers have made a payment agreement with the company. The chart below shows the income levels customers must meet for CAP. The income levels are slightly higher for LIURP, CARES and Hardship Funds. Customers who meet these limits, should call their local electric or natural gas company for details to see if you qualify. Each company's toll-free number is listed below.

2020 Household Size Monthly Income - 150% Federal Poverty Income Guidelines

1 person   $ 1,595
2 persons $ 2,155
3 persons $ 2,715
4 persons $ 3,275
5 persons $ 3,835 The income levels are effective
6 persons $ 4,395 January 2020
7 persons $ 4,955
8 persons $ 5,515  For each additional person in the household, add $560.

Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP)

LIHEAP is the federal program that provides financial assistance to needy households for home energy bills. In Pennsylvania, the Department of Human Services administers the LIHEAP program. The LIHEAP program provides both cash and crisis benefits to low-income households. Cash benefits help low-income customers pay for their home energy needs while crisis payments help meet emergency home energy situations.

LIHEAP Recovery Crisis Program

The Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) helps low-income households pay some energy costs associated with heating your home. In response to the global coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, the Unites States Congress passed the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. The CARES Act, in part, has provided additional funding for LIHEAP to aid households that have been negatively financially impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. In order to get this much needed assistance to as many households as possible, the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services (DHS)  has created the LIHEAP Recovery Crisis Program. If your household is experiencing a heating emergency, such as being out of fuel or having a past due balance that may result in your electricity or natural gas being shut off, LIHEAP may be able to help. For more information on this special Recovery Crisis Program, visit the DHS website.

Your household income must be within certain limits to qualify. These limits are listed on Department of Human Services website at Energy Assistance - General Information.

For more information on LIHEAP and an application for, visit the Department of Human Services' website: LIHEAP Application Form

Partners for Warmth - LIHEAP Outreach for customers of Peoples Natural Gas, Columbia Gas of PA, Equitable Gas and Peoples TWP.

Telephone Numbers to Call

LIHEAP & Utility Assistance Programs - Electric & Gas

Utility Utility Assistance Programs LIHEAP Referral
West Penn Power - formerly Allegheny Power (LIPURP) (800) 207-1250 Refer directly to county assistance office
Duquesne (CAP) (888) 393-7600 Refer directly to county assistance office
Met-Ed (PCAP) (800) 962-4848 Refer directly to county assistance office
PECO (CAP Rate) (800) 744-7040 (800) 34HELP4 (344-3574)
Penelec (PCAP) (800) 962-4848 Refer directly to county assistance office
Penn Power (PCAP) (800) 720-3600 Refer directly to county assistance office
PPL (OnTrack) (800) 358-6623 Refer directly to county assistance office
UGI-Electric (CAP) (800) 844-9276 (800) UGI-WARM (844-9276)
Columbia (CAP) (800) 537-7431 (800) 272-2714
Peoples Natural Gas (CAP) (800) 400-WARM (9276) (800) 400-9276 (WARM)
Equitable (CAP) (877) 577-8735

 (800) 644-8090

NFG (LIRA) (800) 365-3234 Refer directly to county assistance office
UGI Penn Natural Gas (CAP) (800) 490-8605 (800) UGI-WARM (844-9276)
PGW (CRP) (215) 235-1000 Refer directly to county assistance office
UGI Central Penn Gas (CAP) (800) 652-0550 (800) UGI-WARM (844-9276)
Peoples TWP (EHF) (866) 276-4055 Refer directly to county assistance office
UGI - Gas (CAP) (800) 844-9276 (800) UGI-WARM (844-9276)

Utility Assistance Programs - Water

Utility Utility Assistance Programs Phone Numbers
Pennsylvania American Water
(H2O-Help to Others)
  (888) 282-6816 Dollar Energy Fund
(A Helping Hand)
Bucks County (215) 785-3296
(A Helping Hand)
Delaware County (610) 874-8451 or
(610) 583-9133 (Wed. Only)
(A Helping Hand)
Montgomery County (610) 277-6363
(A Helping Hand)
Northumberland County (570) 644-6570
(A Helping Hand)
All Other Counties and for ALL Questions (800) 360-2998
York Water Cares (YWC)   (800) 750-5561 or (717) 845-3601
United Water (UW CARES) Cumberland/Dauphin (717) 564-3662
United Water (UW CARES) Columbia/Luzerne/Perry/Schuylkill/Wyoming/York (888) 299-8972
Pittsburgh Water & Sewer Authority-PWSA (PGH2o) (866) 762-2348 Dollar Energy Fund

USECP and Impact Evaluation Filing Schedules 2020-2025

Filing Date

Utility USECPs/Evaluations

March 1, 2020 PPL Impact Evaluation
September 2, 2020 NFG Impact Evaluation
April 1, 2021 NFG 2022-2026 USECP
November 1, 2021 PGW 2023-2027 USECP
April 1, 2022 PPL 2023-2027 USECP
November 1, 2022 FirstEnergy 2024-2028 USECP
April 1, 2023 Columbia 2024-2028 USECP
November 1, 2023 Peoples 2025-2029 USECP
November 1, 2023 Duquesne Impact Evaluation
April 1, 2024 PECO 2025-2029 USECP
April 1, 2024 UGI Impact Evaluation
November 1, 2024 Duquesne 2026-2030 USECP
April 1, 2025 UGI 2026-2030 USECP

Universal Service Plans & Evaluations

Peoples Natural Gas Universal Service Plan - Evaluation

Columbia Gas of PA Universal Service Plan - Evaluation

PPL Electric Universal Service Plan - Addendum - Evaluation

Peoples TWP Universal Service Plan - Evaluation

PG Energy Universal Service Plan - Evaluation

UGI Utilities Inc. Universal Service Plan - Evaluation

Duquesne Light Universal Service Plan - Evaluation

National Fuel Gas Universal Service Plan - Evaluation

PGW Universal Service Plan - Evaluation


FirstEnergy Universal Service & Energy Conservation Plan:  Evaluation
USECP for Met-Ed, Penelec, Penn Power and West Penn Power

PECO Universal Service Plan - Universal Service Evaluation - - LIURP Evaluation


Universal Service Review

On May 10, 2017, the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (Commission) entered an Opinion and Order, initiating a comprehensive review of Universal Service and Energy Conservation Programs at Docket Number M-2017-2596907. The May 10 Order invited interested parties to provide input on their priorities, concerns, and suggestions for amending and improving any or all aspects of universal service programs. 

Below are documents relative to that proceeding:

Law Bureau Report - Released July 14, 2017.  Identifies the statutory, regulatory, and policy frameworks of existing universal service and energy conservation programs and the processes required to initiate any changes.

Secretarial Letter - Released March 28, 2018. Issues Staff Report and establishes a Universal Service Workgroup.

Commission Staff Report – Released March 28, 2018.  Summarizing comments, feedback and suggestions received from interested parties regarding Universal Service and Energy Conservation Programs.


Universal Service Related Links

Department of Environmental Services

Department of Human Services - LIHEAP

Department of Aging


Dept. of Aging - Office of Long Term Living

Pennsylvania State Website

Dept. of Community & Economic Development - Weatherization

Low-Income Weatherization and Conservation Program Reference Manual (EAP)