The Department of Treasury Unclaimed Property Administration (UPA) presented a record check of $3.2 million to the Affordable Housing Alliance to help provide assistance to low and moderate-income New Jersey households struggling to pay their utility bills.
Under state statute, all funds received in unclaimed property deposits from electric and gas utilities are deposited into the Unclaimed Utility Deposits Trust Fund. Each year, 75 percent of those deposits received are issued to a statewide non-profit energy assistance organization designated by the Board of Public Utilities.
State law stipulates that the funds must be used exclusively for the payment of expenses associated with the restoration of electric or gas service, or to prevent the termination of electric or gas service provided to utility ratepayers seeking energy assistance. The remaining portion is retained in the trust fund, administered and invested by the State Treasurer, and used to pay Unclaimed Property claims and expenses and costs incurred by the State of New Jersey.
“As the economy improves and housing costs rise faster than incomes, individuals and families have found significant relief and hope through access to the PAGE program,” said Donna M. Blaze, AHA CEO. “Households all across New Jersey are often pleasantly surprised by the benefits the state provides to working families for utility assistance when they most need it. Call or go online to see if you could be one of the families we can help.”
Last year, the AHA distributed a record $4.2 million in grants to thousands of households throughout New Jersey. Applications for assistance can be found at www.njpoweron.org.
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