U.S. Sen. Jack Reed says $21.6 million in federal funding will be available to help Rhode Island families and seniors with their heating bills this winter.
The Rhode Island Democrat says the Trump administration is releasing the funding through the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program.
Reed encouraged people who need help to sign up early by contacting the state human services department.
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He says the funds are a lifeline for many people, and no one should choose between paying for heat and buying other essentials.
Reed and U.S. Sen. Susan Collins, a Maine Republican, led an effort to prevent cuts to the federally-funded program that helps low-income households with their home energy bills, then urged for a quick release of the funds.
Reed says about 35,000 Rhode Island residents received assistance last year.