Illinois General Assembly - Full Text of Public Act 096-0157
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Public Act 096-0157




Public Act 096-0157
SB1629 Enrolled LRB096 08972 DRJ 21230 b

    AN ACT concerning public aid.
    Be it enacted by the People of the State of Illinois,
represented in the General Assembly:
    Section 5. The Energy Assistance Act is amended by changing
Section 6 as follows:
    (305 ILCS 20/6)  (from Ch. 111 2/3, par. 1406)
    Sec. 6. Eligibility, Conditions of Participation, and
Energy Assistance.
    (a) Any person who is a resident of the State of Illinois
and whose household income is not greater than an amount
determined annually by the Department, in consultation with the
Policy Advisory Council, may apply for assistance pursuant to
this Act in accordance with regulations promulgated by the
Department. In setting the annual eligibility level, the
Department shall consider the amount of available funding and
may not set a limit higher than 150% of the federal nonfarm
poverty level as established by the federal Office of
Management and Budget.
    (b) Applicants who qualify for assistance pursuant to
subsection (a) of this Section shall, subject to appropriation
from the General Assembly and subject to availability of funds
to the Department, receive energy assistance as provided by
this Act. The Department, upon receipt of monies authorized
pursuant to this Act for energy assistance, shall commit funds
for each qualified applicant in an amount determined by the
Department. In determining the amounts of assistance to be
provided to or on behalf of a qualified applicant, the
Department shall ensure that the highest amounts of assistance
go to households with the greatest energy costs in relation to
household income. The Department shall include factors such as
energy costs, household size, household income, and region of
the State when determining individual household benefits. In
setting assistance levels, the Department shall attempt to
provide assistance to approximately the same number of
households who participated in the 1991 Residential Energy
Assistance Partnership Program. Such assistance levels shall
be adjusted annually on the basis of funding availability and
energy costs. In promulgating rules for the administration of
this Section the Department shall assure that a minimum of 1/3
of funds available for benefits to eligible households with the
lowest incomes and that elderly and disabled households are
offered a priority application period.
    (c) If the applicant is not a customer of record of an
energy provider for winter energy services or an applicant for
such service, such applicant shall receive a direct energy
assistance payment in an amount established by the Department
for all such applicants under this Act; provided, however, that
such an applicant must have rental expenses for housing greater
than 30% of household income.
    (c-1) This subsection shall apply only in cases where: (1)
the applicant is not a customer of record of an energy provider
because energy services are provided by the owner of the unit
as a portion of the rent; (2) the applicant resides in housing
subsidized or developed with funds provided under the Rental
Housing Support Program Act or under a similar locally funded
rent subsidy program, or is the voucher holder who resides in a
rental unit within the State of Illinois and whose monthly rent
is subsidized by the tenant-based Housing Choice Voucher
Program under Section 8 of the U.S. Housing Act of 1937; and
(3) the rental expenses for housing are no more than 30% of
household income. In such cases, the household may apply for an
energy assistance payment under this Act and the owner of the
housing unit shall cooperate with the applicant by providing
documentation of the energy costs for that unit. Any
compensation paid to the energy provider who supplied energy
services to the household shall be paid on behalf of the owner
of the housing unit providing energy services to the household.
The Department shall report annually to the General Assembly on
the number of households receiving energy assistance under this
subsection and the cost of such assistance. The provisions of
this subsection (c-1), other than this sentence, are
inoperative after August 31, 2012.
    (d) If the applicant is a customer of an energy provider,
such applicant shall receive energy assistance in an amount
established by the Department for all such applicants under
this Act, such amount to be paid by the Department to the
energy provider supplying winter energy service to such
applicant. Such applicant shall:
        (i) make all reasonable efforts to apply to any other
    appropriate source of public energy assistance; and
        (ii) sign a waiver permitting the Department to receive
    income information from any public or private agency
    providing income or energy assistance and from any
    employer, whether public or private.
    (e) Any qualified applicant pursuant to this Section may
receive or have paid on such applicant's behalf an emergency
assistance payment to enable such applicant to obtain access to
winter energy services. Any such payments shall be made in
accordance with regulations of the Department.
    (f) The Department may, if sufficient funds are available,
provide additional benefits to certain qualified applicants:
        (i) for the reduction of past due amounts owed to
    energy providers; and
        (ii) to assist the household in responding to
    excessively high summer temperatures or energy costs.
    Households containing elderly members, children, a person
    with a disability, or a person with a medical need for
    conditioned air shall receive priority for receipt of such
(Source: P.A. 91-936, eff. 1-10-01; 92-690, eff. 7-18-02.)
    Section 99. Effective date. This Act takes effect September
1, 2009.

Effective Date: 9/1/2009