Calcasieu water bill assistance applications open in April

LAKE CHARLES, Louisiana (KPLC) – Beginning April 4, 2022, low-income families in the Parish of Calcasieu will be able to apply for financial assistance for their water and wastewater costs through the Low-Income Home Water Assistance Program (LiHWAP).

The LiHWAP program is designed to help support emergency water and wastewater payments for low-income households so they are not forced to choose between paying for water services and paying for necessities like housing, food, and medicine.

The Public Service Department of the Calcasieu Parish Police Jury received $796,765 to fund the program through the Louisiana Housing Corporation, the 2021 Consolidated Appropriations Act, and the 2021 American Rescue Program Act.

The program is modeled after the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LiHEAP), which provides eligible residents financial assistance for electric and gas utility bills.

LiHWAP is based on a resident’s gross income and prioritizes residents over the age of 60, families with children under the age of 5, and residents with disabilities.

Additionally, residents who have applied for LiHEAP within the past six months will be fully eligible for LiHWAP. Eligible applicants are only required to provide a current water or wastewater bill.

LiHWAP will be implemented in three phases:

  • The first phase will involve households who need immediate resumption of services. The application period for this stage will open on Monday, April 4.
  • The second phase will involve households who need immediate payment of overdue bills and a payment plan to prevent interruption of water service. The application period for this stage will open on Monday, May 2.
  • The third stage will involve families seeking assistance with current bills. The application period for this stage will begin on Monday, June 6.

Beginning April 4, residents who believe they may be eligible for Phase 1 of LiHWAP can schedule their application appointment by calling 337-721-4033 between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m.

Those who think they are suitable for Stage 2 or Stage 3 can start calling to make an appointment on the respective date.

Before seeking help, interested residents should ensure that their water/sewage provider has opted in to the program.

Eligible owners or operators of public water or treatment engineering systems must complete and submit a supplier agreement to the Louisiana Housing Corporation as soon as possible. For more information on this, please contact Human Services at 337-721-4030.

For more information about the program, you can contact Calcasieu Parish Police Jury’s Human Services Department at 337-721-4030.

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