Assemblyman Englebright Announces Air-Conditioners Available for Low-Income Residents with Serious Medical Conditions

Cooling Initiative Offers Relief for Vulnerable Long Islanders during Summer Heat
July 2, 2012

Assemblyman Steve Englebright (D-Setauket) announced that assistance is available for low-income New Yorkers whose health issues pose a medical emergency during the extended period of hot weather this summer.

“This year has already brought several heat waves, which can be life threatening for residents with serious medical conditions," Assemblyman Englebright said. "Senior citizens and children with illnesses are most susceptible to heat-related illness, especially on Long Island were extreme heat is often coupled with increased air pollution. This initiative will provide low-income homes with much-needed air-conditioners so that residents can stay cool and healthy."

New York State has set aside $3 million in funding for this program through the federally-funded Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP).

In Suffolk County, the Community Development Corp. of Long Island (CDC of LI), based in Centereach, will administer this program. The CDC will accept applications, determine eligibility, and oversee the installation of the air-conditioning units. Under the terms of the grant, one air-conditioner will be awarded to an eligible household or dwelling unit, with installation and labor included. Grants do not include the cost of operating the air-conditioning unit.

CDC can be reached at (631) 471-1215.

Income Eligibility is determined by LIHEAP low-income guidelines.

• For a single individual household, the maximum gross annual income to qualify is $25,752. For a couple, $33,672, and for a four-person household, $49,500.

Other requirements:

• Having at least one household member who has been diagnosed with a chronic or acute medical condition which is aggravated by exposure to extreme heat situations.

• Written documentation (dated within the last six months) from a doctor stating that air-conditioning assistance is critical to prevent a heat emergency.

• House must have double hung windows and move up and down to enable air-conditioner installation.

Households that have a working air-conditioner or have received one from the State in the last 10 years are not eligible.