Okla. DHS helping some pay their electric bills

By: Allison Harris Email
By: Allison Harris Email

DURANT, OKLAHOMA -- It's hard to beat the heat without electricity.

Last year, Oklahoma DHS says they helped 96,000 Oklahomans pay their summer electricity bills and they expect to help the same number of people this summer.

Today, the Bryan County Department of Human Services lobby was packed with people trying to get in on the deal.

"Today we've been processing applications for summer cooling assistance," Bryan County Department of Human Services official Chris Watson said.

Oklahoma DHS is giving $22 million dollars to Oklahomans in need, based on their income and the number of people in their home.

Those who qualify will get $200 to $250 dollars to offset their electricity bills.

"A lot of times we have folks on fixed incomes coming to apply. We also have a lot of families who are working but who still meet the income guidelines," Watson said.

Chris says that in Bryan County alone, they expect to help 500 residents.

"It'll depend on the number of applicants that we have and it'll also depend on how long the program lasts," Watson.

Curtis Bully was approved for assistance today in Durant.

"I was laid off," Bully said.

He says this help means a lot to him.

"Oh for the time being, it'll help me pretty much stay on my feet, keep going," Bully said.

If you didn't apply today, Chris says to hurry in to an Oklahoma DHS office.

Oklahoma DHS officials say that last year, the money was gone in three days.

"It's going to depend on when the money is spent, so the sooner the better," Watson said.

For more information, head to dhs.org or http://www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/ocs/liheap/.

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  • by Okiemom on Jul 10, 2012 at 03:48 PM
    Here are the stats for people who do not know! For OKDHS to qualify for the LIHEAP program the income guidelines are as follows: 1 - $998 2 - $1348 3 - $1699 4 - $2049 5 - $2399 6 - $2749 7 - $3099 8 - $3449 According to the USDA a family of four can make up to $15.14/hr gross income and still qualify for SNAP benefits. The poverty level for a family of four is making less than $12/hr. I have some questions for everyone who is on here complaining about this and other assistance programs. How much money do you make? How long did it take you to make that amount? Do you have any degrees? One last one, have you never had a time in your life when you needed help? whether it be from a govt program or friends, family, ect? Maybe some of these people need to take a look at their own lives before they go and start criticizing others? 'For I was hungry, and you gave Me something to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger, and you invited Me in; naked, and you clothed Me; I was sick, and you visited Me; I was in prison, and you came to Me.' "Then the righteous will answer Him, saying, 'Lord, when did we see You hungry, and feed You, or thirsty, and give You drink? 'And when did we see You a stranger, and invite You in, or naked, and clothe You? 'And when did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?' "And the King will answer and say to them, 'Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did it to one of these brothers of Mine, even the least of them, you did it to Me.' Matthew 25:35-40
  • by J.B. on Jul 10, 2012 at 02:07 PM
    As a Christian, I believe these people (Especially those elderly on fixed income) should just try to pray away the heat. Just like we did last year in the drought, when we prayed for rain. Several months later, we got some rain. I'll bet that if they start praying now, the heat will start going away by about October.
    • reply
      by J.B. Fan on Jul 11, 2012 at 07:35 PM in reply to J.B.
      Lol! You ROCK JB!
  • by Okiemom on Jul 10, 2012 at 11:14 AM
    Did anyone see the part about fixed income or working families receiving this assistance? So maybe it's not a bunch "bums" but elderly and working families that jUst need a little help!?
    • reply
      by Bea on Jul 10, 2012 at 12:19 PM in reply to Okiemom
      Thank you, these yokels are so ignorant
    • reply
      by Billy Bob Thornton@Windom on Jul 10, 2012 at 12:42 PM in reply to Okiemom
      We have got to stop feeding the fat people,we should do all we can for the elderly,not for the fake hurt and sick,they should have known that when we gave them free fans that their electric bill would go up,a fan will run your bill way up, unlike an AC.Stop feeding the fat people.
  • by Feed the children on Jul 10, 2012 at 11:06 AM
    I wanna kno who made up that law that my tax dollars are spent feeding kids in school lunch programs and in the summer the kids are malnutritioned! If you cant afford to feed yer kides dont have any!
    • reply
      by okiemom on Jul 10, 2012 at 03:28 PM in reply to Feed the children
      If I understand you correctly, the answer is there are programs through most school districts during the summer that offer breakfast and lunch to all children for free and at a reduced price for adults.
  • by Anonymous on Jul 10, 2012 at 09:58 AM
    And here I am, like a fool, doing without AC and eating cheaply just because the construction business is in a depression and customers can't pay what they owe me. Should I just give up and take the unemployment, food stamps and utility assistance like the government wants me to do? In fact, I'm certain I could get SS disability if I tried and that is the fastest growing 'employment' program in the Obama era. Did you know that more people went on disability last month that found new jobs? The fastest growing sector in the US economy, government dependence. If you can't beat them, join them?
  • by Welfare Kitties Location: Everywhere on Jul 9, 2012 at 09:53 PM
    I love that they are giving away 22 million of our money to make these moochers comfortable. What happened to handing out free fans? We are paying their electric bills now also???? America is over..... we are just fighting for the scraps now.
    • reply
      by Mike H. on Jul 10, 2012 at 09:01 AM in reply to Welfare Kitties
      I love how we gave away 6 trillion of our money to fight a war in Iraq so the people there can enjoy the freedom of choosing the guy with the best anti-American message to lead them! If government spending did us in, then we began dying years before now....and SCRAPS, or trickle down economics, is what the Republicans want us to fight over. Put your hands in the spending habits of the "job creators"....whats the difference!!!!
      • reply
        by Anonymous on Jul 10, 2012 at 01:31 PM in reply to Mike H.
        6 TRILLION in Iraq? Try 800 billion which generated roughly 500 billion in revenue from manufacturing, employment, etc---so it was largely a wash. But had we done as we should and taken over the oil fields until we got our money back and installed a government more friendly, kept a base in operation, it might have been worth it. As it is we just gave it all away.
        • reply
          by Mickey on Jul 11, 2012 at 04:03 PM in reply to
          Largely a wash? Really? A $300 billion difference according to the low ball figure you use. Of course, you totally disregard the a significant ongoing cost of the war: disability benefits and medical care for the wounded, and benefits to the families of the deceased. Before it is all said and done a conservative estimate of the cost of that war will be in excess of $3 trillion, unless we do as you would prefer, and shove the invalids aside and let them fend for themselves. Hey, your boy Cheney told us the total cost would run about $80 billion. Apparently he used intelligence similar to that which was used to justify the invasion in the first place. Or maybe he was just talking about the money Haliburton et al would make on their no bid contracts. Oh and watch out now. You stated government spending resulted in $500 billion in revenue. Say what? That can't be, because every Repugnantcan politician tells us the government cannot create jobs and wealth. AND all of it was paid for with borrowed money. What happened to all your blubbering about future generations? Install a friendly government. Aside the fact that GWB promised not to engage in nation building, since when is it the business of the US to install governments anywhere. A strict constructionist like you would be hard pressed to find that authority outlined in the Constitution.
    • reply
      by JP on Jul 10, 2012 at 10:02 AM in reply to Welfare Kitties
      Yep we just keep giving and creating a selfish, me me society that will get larger and large along with the welfare tit!
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