FRANKFORT, Ky. (Dec. 1, 2021) – As part of an ongoing effort to address the financial impact of COVID-19, Gov. Andy Beshear has announced that Kentucky will receive over $18 million in federal aid to help households that have fallen behind on paying their water bills and face disconnection of service or have already been disconnected.
The funding – $18,684,749 – will come from the federal Low Income Household Water Assistance Program (LIHWAP). Kentuckians can apply starting today, Dec. 1.
“Every Kentuckian deserves access to fresh drinking water,” said Gov. Beshear. “We are pleased to announce this funding that will provide Kentuckians in need some relief by helping them continue to access critical water services.”
The funding will allow for benefit payments made directly to water vendors, covering delinquent water bills, past-due charges, fees and taxes for drinking and wastewater services.
LIHWAP is a federal program funded through the Consolidated Appropriations Act and the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021. Cabinet for Health and Family Services Secretary Eric Friedlander thanked legislators for recognizing the financial impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on low-income households.
“If you are a Kentucky resident who qualifies for the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program, or LIHEAP, you may be considered for LIHWAP help as well,” Friedlander said. “You can simply apply for LIHEAP and LIHWAP at the same time – all within one application – and provide your most recent bill.”
Friedlander emphasized that LIHWAP is a temporary emergency water/wastewater program intended to help low-income households and families during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“This benefit for eligible households who have been disconnected or are on disconnect notice from water/wastewater services or arrearages for water/wastewater services is funded through September 2023 or until funds run out,” he said.
The program will be administered through Kentucky’s Community Action Agencies that serve all 120 counties. Kentuckians will be able to apply by contacting their local Community Action Agency. To locate the nearest agency, visit the resources area of kynect.ky.gov. Learn more about LIHWAP here: https://www.acf.hhs.gov/ocs/programs/lihwap.