February 1, 2019
“No family should have to choose between putting food on the table and keeping the lights on or the heat running, particularly at this time of year when a lack of heat can be life-threatening,” said State Treasurer Elizabeth Maher Muoio. “Our Unclaimed Property Administration works tirelessly all year long to recover and safeguard funds that help support this vital program for the benefit of struggling families throughout New Jersey.”
Under state statute, unclaimed deposits received from electric and gas utilities are placed in the Unclaimed Utility Deposits Trust Fund. Each year, 75 percent of the funds received are issued to a statewide non-profit energy assistance organization designated by the Board of Public Utilities.
“Utility costs are a challenge for many struggling families all year long,” said UPA Administrator Steve Harris. “With temperatures plummeting and heating costs likely to soar, this relief couldn’t come at a better time. It’s extremely rewarding to see the funds we manage help support such a worthy cause.”
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.
“These funds serve those who find themselves in temporary financial need such as those recently impacted by the government shutdown, families who lost wages due to events like the Marcal factory fire or catastrophic health issues that resulted in the loss of income,” said Donna Blaze, CEO of the Affordable Housing Alliance. “Providing payments of up to $750 per utility directly to the gas and electric companies for struggling families has significantly reduced the stress on nearly 5,000 families a year during hard times. Our biggest barrier to increasing the use of these funds is the assumption that if a family is working they are not eligible so we urge everyone to check eligibility requirements. It is too cold not to have heat and power and New Jersey has one of the most comprehensive continuums of utility assistance for its residents. We are proud to have been selected to administer these programs.”
The Affordable Housing Alliance (AHA) urges residents to visit www.njpoweron.org and check eligibility requirements for the many programs offered.
The AHA is a New Jersey-based private, nonprofit 501(c)3 corporation that has been providing housing and related relief to New Jersey residents for 28 years. AHA has been providing utility assistance to New Jersey residents for over eight years, administering: the federal Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) and the Universal Service Fund (USF) program for Monmouth County; New Jersey Natural Gas Company’s Gift of Warmth program in Monmouth and Middlesex Counties; Atlantic City Electric Company’s Helping Hands program; and the Board of Public Utilities (BPU) Payment Assistance for Gas and Electric (PAGE) program. AHA is also the designated disaster relief counseling agency for those still struggling to recover from Superstorm Sandy.
Link to original post: https://www.state.nj.us/treasury/news/2019/02012019.shtml
The Affordable Housing Alliance pursues a diverse and inclusive workforce. Applicants and employees shall not be discriminated against because of race, religion, sex, national origin, ethnicity, age, mental or physical disability, genetic information, creed, sexual orientation, nationality, income, gender (including pregnancy and gender expression) identity, color, marital status, veteran status, medical condition, ancestry, or any other classification protected by federal, state, or local law or ordinance.
When you give to the Affordable Housing Alliance (AHA), you are helping us continue our more than 30+ years of commitment to providing homes and services to individuals and families in the communities we live in. Your donation today to the AHA can help make homeownership a reality and improve the quality of life for moderate to low-income families and individuals. Gifts can support our general fund, a specific program, or a special project, such as a playground or community room for children. Donate Today to the AHA and give the gift of being home.
You can donate today directly via PayPal below: