Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Donations Saught For Winter Heating Assistance

I found this article by Lynn Doan from the Hartford Courant originally linked on Peak Oil. You know, I never add that dollar onto my bill...
Why is it so hard to get outside of ourselves?

"We really need everyone's help," said the executive direcotr of Operation Fuel, Patricia Wrice, recounting the story of an elderly man in eastern Connecticut who received aid for the first time last winter. "The following week, he called to say he'd taken a hot shower for the first time in two months."


State lawmakers voted in a special session Friday to set aside $14 million of the state's anticipated surplus for Operation Fuel, but the allocation isn't nearly enough to cover a statewide affordability gap of more than $405 million — a calculation based on the difference between the average energy bill and what a low-income household can afford.

Rell, who attended Monday's launch of the public awareness campaign, urged the public to pitch in.

"More is going to be needed," she said.

Operation Fuel has raised less than $200,000 through private donations for the upcoming winter, though it is still early in the fund-raising season. Officials are hoping the ad campaign, which includes the TV spots, print ads and brochures, will persuade more residents to donate.

Wrice said less than 2 percent of electricity customers currently choose to donate $1 on their monthly bill to Operation Fuel.

Last year, those donations tacked onto monthly bills — along with a match by Connecticut Light & Power Co. — totaled $487,000. The group received an additional $913,000 from individuals and businesses last year, and $5 million from the state.

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