What to do if you need summer cooling assistance

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INDIANAPOLIS — Keeping cool this summer just got harder for tens of thousands of Hoosiers who were counting on a credit to their utility bills, so FOX59 looked into what you should do if you need help.

More than 130,000 families – 19,000 of them in Marion County – learned this week that the state won’t be giving them an expected $50 credit to their bills this summer.

That’s because state agencies say they spent so much, $47.8 million total, on extra heating assistance during the harsh winter.

“It kind of puts you in a stressful situation,” one mother said.

She hoped that credit would help get her through the summer, keeping utilities on for her five kids.

“(It’s) just that little boost of help that helped me get through,” she said.

At least one state representative, Robin Shackleford, D-Indianapolis, said she hoped the state could get together to find the money elsewhere.

“To people that are low income, people that are making minimum wage or less, $50 is a lot to go towards your utility bill,” Shackleford said.

If you do need help keeping the power on this summer, there are steps you can take. Call your utility company and 211 first. Then try local churches and your county trustee’s office. If you still can’t find assistance and face a disconnection notice, there will be emergency help available up to $200 for extreme cases.

If you think you need emergency help, find your local assistance agency at the link here.

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