Dept. of Human Services upcoming water assistance program taking applications Jan. 4

Western PA News

Water from a sink (Photo Illustration by Sean Gallup/Getty Images)

HARRISBURG — On Tuesday, the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services (DHS) highlighted the Low Income Household Water Assistance Program (LIHWAP), an upcoming program to help Pennsylvanians maintain access to drinking and wastewater service.

Applications for LIHWAP open Jan. 4, 2022.

“Access to clean drinking water and wastewater services that keep our homes safe are foundational to daily wellbeing,” said DHS Acting Secretary Meg Snead. “I encourage all Pennsylvanians who are at risk of losing this essential service to have necessary information on hand to apply when LIHWAP opens on Jan. 4.”

LIHWAP is a new, temporary assistance program established through the American Rescue Plan Act and the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021 as part of the nation’s continued response to the challenges and and economic uncertainty experienced by families due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Pennsylvania received approximately $43.2 million to assist families who have lost or are at risk of losing water service in their homes.

Assistance is available for families who have past due water bills, had their service terminated or received a notice indicating that their service will be terminated in the next 60 days. Households can receive LIHWAP grants for both drinking water service and wastewater service as long as they meet income requirements.

Receiving utility assistance through another program like the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) or the Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP) does not prevent a household from receiving assistance through LIHWAP, as long as the applicant meets LIHWAP eligibility criteria. Income guidelines for the program are:

Household SizeMaximum Annual Income

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As they prepare to apply in early January, Pennsylvanians should have the following information ready to submit their application:

  • Names, Social Security numbers, and dates of birth for all people in their household;
  • Proof of income for the applicant and all household members; and,
  • A recent water bill.

Learn more about LIHWAP HERE.

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