27 Sep ESSEX COUNTY EXECUTIVE DIVINCENZO ANNOUNCES TWO PROGRAMS AVAILABLE TO HELP ELIGIBLE HOUSEHOLDS WITH ELECTRIC AND GAS BILLS Essex County Division of Community Action Taking Applications for TRUE and PAGE Grant Programs

Essex County, NJ – Essex County Executive Joseph N. DiVincenzo, Jr. announced two new programs to provide temporary utility assistance for eligible low- to moderate-income households are now available through the Essex County Division of Community Action. Essex County is administering the programs – the TRUE and PAGE grant programs – that can provide assistance to eligible families who are experiencing difficulty paying their utility bills.

“When families experience unemployment or medical issues, it may become difficult to make ends meet. If you have an unpaid gas or electric bill or are being threatened with your utilities being cut off because you can’t afford to pay, eligible households can apply through Essex County for a one-time grant to help them during their crisis,” DiVincenzo said. “We are pleased to be administering the TRUE and PAGE programs to provide utility assistance to eligible households so that all our residents can get through this winter safely,” he added.

The TRUE Program – Temporary Relief for Utility Expenses – is available to eligible low- to moderate-income families. It is a one-time annual assistance program to help households that are experiencing a temporary crisis, such as unemployment, underemployment or medical issues. A grant of $750 can be awarded to help pay current or overdue balances on electric and gas bills. Awarded grants cannot exceed the combined amount of $1,500. Essex County is administering the TRUE Program in partnership with the Affordable Housing Alliance (AHA) and the Board of Public Utilities, which provided funding for the program.

The PAGE Program – Payment Assistance for Gas and Electric – also is available to eligible low- and moderate-income households. It is a one-time annual assistance program implemented to assist households that are experiencing a hardship in paying their bills. A grant of $700 can be awarded to help pay for electricity and natural gas. Awarded grants cannot exceed the combined amount of $1,400. Essex County is administering the program in partnership with the Board of Public Utilities and the NJ Department of Treasury, which provided funding for the program.

The Essex County Division of Community Action will be interviewing clients to determine eligibility at its offices at 50 South Clinton Street in East Orange. To schedule an appointment, please call 973-395-8350.