U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders and a senate colleague from Minnesota are seeking an additional $1 billion for a program to help low-income families heat their homes this winter.
Sanders and Senator Norm Coleman say they’ll propose legislation today that would provide the increased money for the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program, or LIHEAP. The extra billion dollars would come on top of the roughly $2.4 billion included for the program in a larger health and education spending bill that President Bush vetoed.
According to Coleman’s office, federal support for the program has increased by 10 percent over the last four years even as the number of households receiving aid has jumped 26 percent. That’s resulted in a reduction of the average national seasonal grant from $349 to $305.