January 11, 2018

Grants for heating system upgrades will aid low-income families in two counties

A statewide heating improvement program for low-income households got a boost in Androscoggin and Oxford counties with a $500,000 grant from the Maine State Housing Authority.

The additional funding will allow Community Concepts to expand its Central Heating Improvement Program, which provides state-funded grants to repair or replace central heating systems for low-income households, with priority given to households that are without heat.

CHIP is administered across the state by local community action agencies.

"The additional funds mean that the most vulnerable people will not suffer in the intense cold we are experiencing this winter, as we will be able to perform repairs and replacements of heating systems as needed for those who would otherwise not be able to afford them," said Sandy Albert, director of housing improvement services at Community Concepts, in a news release.

"The additional funds coming from Maine Housing to expand the CHIP program will be extremely beneficial to our area," said Community Concepts CEO Shawn Yardley. He said that it will coast about $25,000 to administer the grant.

Ted West, founder of Atlantic National Trust private equity firm, donated $5,000 toward the distribution costs, the release said.

West said that Atlantic National Trust is a strong advocate of the work Community Concepts does and the impact the organization has on the Lewiston community. "Naturally, we jumped at the opportunity to help them keep Mainers warm in the winter," he said.


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