124 House Members Call on President Obama to Provide $4.7 Billion for LIHEAP for FY 2016

The following list of 124 House members signed a letter calling on President Obama to provide $4.7 billion for LIHEAP for FY 2015:

Signers (124):
Lou Barletta (R-PA 11), Dan Benishek (R-MI 1), Mike Bishop (R-MI 8), Tim Bishop (D-NY 1), Suzanne Bonamici (D-OR 1), Robert Brady (D-PA 1), Corrine Brown (D-FL 5), Cheri Bustos (D-IL 17), G.K Butterfield (D-NC 1), Michael Capuano (D-MA 7), Tony Cárdenas (D-CA 29), Matthew Cartwright (D-PA 17), Judy Chu (D-CA 27), David Cicilline (D-RI 1), Katherine Clark (D-MA 5), Yvette Clarke (D-NY 9), Emanuel Cleaver (D-MO 5), Steve Cohen (D-TN 9), Gerry Connolly (D-VA 11), John Conyers, Jr. (D-MI 3), Joe Courtney (D-CT 2), Joseph Crowley (D-NY 14), Elijah Cummings (D-MD 7), Danny Davis (D-IL 7), Peter DeFazio (D-OR 4), Diana DeGette (D-CO 1), John Delaney (D-MD 6), Rosa DeLauro (D-CT 3), Ted Deutch (D-FL 21), Debbie Dingell (D-MI 12), Mike Doyle (D-PA 14), Donna Edwards (D-MD 4), Keith Ellison (D-MN 5), Eliot Engel (D-NY 16), Elizabeth Esty (D-CT 5), Chaka Fattah (D-PA 2), Michael Fitzpatrick (R-PA 8), Bill Foster (D-IL 11), Marcia Fudge (D-OH 11), Chris Gibson (R-NY 19), Al Green (D-TX 9), Gene Green (D-TX 29), Raul Grijalva (D-AZ 3), Michael Grimm (R-NY 11), Luis Gutiérrez (D-IL 4), Richard Hanna (R-NY 22), Alcee Hastings (D-FL 20), Brian Higgins (D-NY 26), Jim Himes (D-CT 4), Mike Honda (D-CA 17), Steny Hoyer (D-MD 5), Jared Huffman (D-CA 2), Steve Israel (D-NY 3), Sheila Jackson Lee (D-TX 18), Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY 8), Hank Johnson (D-GA 4), Marcy Kaptur (D-OH 9), William Keating (D-MA 9), Joseph Kennedy, III (D-MA 4), Daniel Kildee (D-MI 5), Ron Kind (D-WI 3), Peter King (R-NY 2), Ann Kirkpatrick (D-AZ 1), Ann Kuster (D-NH 2), Jim Langevin (D-RI 2), John Larson (D-CT 1), Barbara Lee (D-CA 13), Sander Levin (D-MI 9), John Lewis (D-GA 5), Daniel Lipinski (D-IL 3), Frank LoBiondo (R-NJ 2), David Loebsack (D-IA 2), Alan Lowenthal (D-CA 47), Ben Lujan (D-NM 3), Michelle Lujan Grisham (D-NM 1), Stephen Lynch (D-MA 8), Carolyn Maloney (D-NY 12), Tom Marino (R-PA 10), Carolyn McCarthy (D-NY 4), Betty McCollum (D-MN 4), Jim McDermott (D-WA 7), James McGovern (D-MA 2), Gregory Meeks (D-NY 5), Grace Meng (D-NY 6), Michael Michaud (D-ME 2), Gwen Moore (D-WI 4), Jerrold Nadler (D-NY 10), Grace Napolitano (D-CA 32), Richard Neal (D-MA 1), Elanor Holmes Norton (D-DC), Frank Pallone (D-NJ 6), Bill Pascrell (D-NJ 9), Donald Payne (D-NJ 10), Gary Peters (D-MI 9), Pedro Pierluisi (D-PR), Chellie Pingree (D-ME 1), Mark Pocan (D-WI 2), Mike Quigley (D-IL 5), Charles Rangel (D-NY 13), Cedric Richmond (D-LA 2), C.A. Dutch Ruppersberger (D-MD 2), Bobby Rush (D-IL 1), Tim Ryan (D-OH 13), Jan Schakowsky (D-IL 9), Adam Schiff (D-CA 28), Bobby Scott (D-VA 3), David Scott (D-GA 13), José Serrano (D-NY 15), Carol Shea-Porter (D-NH 1), Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ 9), Albio Sires (D-NJ 8), Louise Slaughter (D-NY 25), Bennie Thompson (D-MS 2), Paul Tonko (D-NY 2), Niki Tsongas (D-MA 3), Chris Van Hollen (D-MD 8), Juan Vargas (D-CA 51), Nydia Velázquez (D-NY 7), Tim Walberg (R-MI 7), Timothy Walz (D-MN 1), Maxine Waters (D-CA 43), Peter Welch (D-VT), John Yarmuth (D-KY 3)

See below press release from Reps. Welch and King and link to the letter.

Reps. Welch (D-VT) and King (R-NY) Rally Bipartisan Support to Boost Funding For Low Income Heating Assistance Funds

124 Lawmakers Sign Letter to President Calling for $4.7B in President’s FY16 Budget

WASHINGTON, DC— Today, Representatives Peter Welch (D-VT) and Peter King (R-NY) sent a letter to President Obama calling for a $1.3 billion increase in funding for the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) in his fiscal year 2016 budget. The letter was signed by a bipartisan coalition of 124 House members.

“LIHEAP is the main federal program that helps low-income households and seniors with their energy bills, providing vital assistance during both the cold winter and hot summer months. LIHEAP households are among the most vulnerable in the country,” the letter reads. “According to the National Energy Assistance Director’s Association (NEADA), more than 90 percent of LIHEAP recipients have at least one household member who is a child, elderly, or disabled, and 20 percent of households contain at least one veteran. For these households, LIHEAP funding has been a lifeline during challenging economic times. Access to affordable home energy is not a luxury – it is a matter of health and safety.”

Since FY 2010, the funding for LIHEAP has declined by 1.7 billion which has reduced the number of households receiving for assistance by nearly 18 percent. Funding for LIHEAP in the recently enacted government funding bill was set at $3.39 billion. This bipartisan coalition is calling for $4.7 billion for the next fiscal year.

Click here to view the original letter and all signatures. See the full text of the letter below:

President Barack Obama
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20500

Dear Mr. President,

We are writing to request that you prioritize the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) in your Fiscal Year (FY) 2016 budget proposal by including no less than $4.7 billion for this program that provides critical support to our most vulnerable citizens.

LIHEAP is the main federal program that helps low-income households and seniors with their energy bills, providing vital assistance during both the cold winter and hot summer months. LIHEAP households are among the most vulnerable in the country. According to the National Energy Assistance Director’s Association (NEADA), more than 90 percent of LIHEAP recipients have at least one household member who is a child, elderly, or disabled, and 20 percent of households contain at least one veteran. For these households, LIHEAP funding has been a lifeline during challenging economic times. Access to affordable home energy is not a luxury – it is a matter of health and safety.

We understand the ongoing discretionary budget challenges. However, we are deeply concerned that funding for LIHEAP has declined more than 30 percent in recent years. Moreover, the number of households eligible for assistance continues to exceed available funding. According to NEADA, the total number of households receiving LIHEAP assistance has declined by 17.7 percent between FY 2010 and FY 2014, from 8.1 million to 6.6 million. About 1.5 million poor households have lost access to critical LIHEAP assistance and struggle to pay for the basic necessity of home energy in addition to other essentials like food and medicine.

Funding has declined by almost $1.7 billion since FY 2010, yet energy costs have remained high, reducing the purchasing power of LIHEAP assistance. Recipients have seen their average LIHEAP grant reduced by about $95 since 2010, from $520 in FY 2010 to $424 in FY 2014. The average LIHEAP grant is estimated to cover less than half of the average home heating costs for a household this winter, meaning that many low-income families and seniors will have fewer resources available to meet other basic needs.

As you finalize your FY 2016 budget request, we ask that you take into account the great need for LIHEAP. We urge you to reprioritize this program within your FY 2016 budget and restore funding to this program to a level no less than $4.7 billion.

Thank you for your attention to and consideration of this important request.

Sincerely,

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