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franklin county times

Local agency receives $128K to weatherize homes for low-income, elderly residents

Gov. Kay Ivey has awarded grants totaling $3.2 million to assist low-income, elderly and disabled Alabama residents with weatherizing their homes to lower energy costs – including one grant to a local agency that serves Franklin County.

The grants support Alabama’s Weatherization Assistance Program, which provides funds to improve the energy efficiency and safety of qualifying homes. Priority is given to people with disabilities, the elderly and low-income households with children.

For Franklin County, as well as Colbert and Lauderdale counties, the state awarded $128,255 to Community Action Agency of Northwest Alabama.

“Those Alabama residents who are living on limited incomes, especially the elderly and disabled, can struggle to pay higher utility bills in the summer months,” Ivey said. “These grants will assist in lowering the energy bills for many of them by making upgrades to keep their houses cooler and more comfortable during the hot summer months.” 

An energy audit is conducted of each home that qualifies for weatherization assistance to determine the most cost-efficient measures. Common improvements include installing extra insulation in the attic, walls and floor; sealing air leaks around doors and windows; making repairs or tune-ups to air conditioning and heating units; and replacing incandescent light bulbs with high-efficiency bulbs.

In addition to lowering energy bills, the improvements can reduce the risk of fire and other hazards.

Ivey awarded the grants to 13 other community agencies across the state, in addition to the CAA of Northwest Alabama, that manage the program at the local level and receive applications from individuals who wish to be considered for assistance.

The Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs is administering the grants from funds made available by the U.S. Department of Energy.

“ADECA continues to support Gov. Ivey in helping those who need it most through the Weatherization Assistance Program,” ADECA Director Kenneth Boswell said. “Our partnerships with local community agencies ensure that many underserved residents receive help in preparing their homes for the hottest part of the year now and for years in the future.”