Utility Assistance Programs

An area of rising cost is that of home utilities, gas, electric and water. Ongoing efforts are made to assist residents with making these costs more manageable. One attempt to do so is participation of the City of Independence in the Northeast Ohio Public Energy Council (NOPEC). Established in November of 2000, NOPEC is the largest municipal aggregation for the purchase of utilities in the United States. It represents over one-half million customers in nine counties of Northern Ohio. Residents have the option of purchasing their gas and electricity through the selected NOPEC provider, with the goal of reducing their energy costs through an agreement with this supplier for discounted services. Additionally, any resident choosing not to remain with the public utility can select a private provider of their choice. It is important to be an educated consumer. Questions regarding rates and contracts can be directed to NOPEC at:
  • Gas - (855) 667-3201
  • Electricity - (800) 292-9284

Home Energy Assistance Programs:

Several programs are available to assist residents with their utility bills based upon their income. These programs include:
  • Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP)
  • Winter Crisis Program (E-HEAP)*
  • HEAP Summer Crisis Program (SCP)*
  • Home Weatherization Assistance Program (HWAP)
  • Percentage of Income Payment Plan (PIPP)*
* These programs require an appointment. Residents need to contact the 24-Hour Energy Assistance line at (216) 518-4014. For hearing impaired, the TTY numbers is 711.

HEAP applications, available at Community Services, can be submitted through March 31st, although this deadline is sometimes extended. Financial eligibility criteria is updated annually. To complete a HEAP application, the following information is needed:
  • Proof of citizenship or alien status for all household members
  • Completed and signed application
  • Proof of income for past year for all household members over 18 years of age
  • Copy of most recent gas and electric bills
  • Documentation of Social Security number and birth date
Under the South Hills Salvation Army Unit, emergency funding to assist with gas and electric bills may be available. Eligibility criteria must be met to receive assistance.