Falmouth fuel assistance fund seeks donations

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FALMOUTH —  The town is seeking donations to provide assistance to residents who can’t afford to heat their homes.

At a Jan. 28 meeting, Town Council Chairwoman Faith Varney asked councilors to allocate $10,000 for the town’s fuel assistance fund to help those not covered by the Low Income Heating and Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP).

“I know there are people who are struggling and we’ve had this program in the past,” she said.

The town’s program, which began in 2008 and is run by Opportunity Alliance, assists those who fall just over the income threshold for state assistance, Town Manager Nathan Poore said.

According to Town Clerk Ellen Planer, 49 families received an average of 100 gallons of fuel or $370 to put toward other heating sources, such as electric or wood, last year.

She said 51 donors contributed last year and the hope is that residents will be willing to open their wallets to help those in need again this year.

“This year we have seen a decrease and we’ve only had about $2,000 worth of fuel requests,” Planer said. “Last year at this time we had about $3,000. (But) we still have a lot of winter left and we don’t know how cold it is going to be.”

Donations to the fuel fund can be made at Town Hall or mailed to Falmouth Fuel Fund, Falmouth Town Hall, 271 Falmouth Road, Falmouth, ME 04105. Checks should be made payable to the Town of Falmouth.

Amber Cronin can be reached at acronin@theforecaster.net or 781-3661 ext. 125. Follow her on Twitter @croninamber.