CHEYENNE – Raising $100,000 and assisting 300 families statewide are among the goals of Energy Share of Wyoming, which kicked off its 2019-20 season Monday.

Fifteen Wyoming businesses, organizations and communities sponsor the program that assists individuals with energy-related emergencies when unusual circumstances create financial needs not met through existing assistance programs. Funding comes from voluntary contributions for the program that runs through spring 2020.

During its 30th season last year, Energy Share raised $94,682.75 in private and corporate donations to assist 277 households throughout Wyoming. Recipients of funding lived in 19 of Wyoming’s 23 counties, with an average bill being paid of $306. Energy Share assistance also included 26 special propane fills totaling $9,825.47, which were made from funds provided by Rocky Mountain PERC.

A nonprofit organization, Energy Share of Wyoming is a partnership of numerous organizations, utilities and businesses. Sponsoring groups include: The Salvation Army; Montana/Dakota Utilities Co.; Rocky Mountain Power; Black Hills Energy; Townsquare Media Group; Wyoming Rural Electric Association; City of Gillette; Town of Lusk; Dominion Energy; Align; City of Powell; Kelly Rizley Advertising & PR; Powder River Energy Corp.; and Rocky Mountain PERC.

Energy Share funding is available to assist with payment for energy bills when all other resources and assistance have been exhausted. First priority goes to individuals and families at or above 185% of the federal poverty level. Special consideration is given to senior citizens and the disabled. Energy Share provides for a one-time expenditure of up to $400 per household for energy costs. Additionally, Rocky Mountain PERC has donated funds to support a one-time payment this season for propane customers of up to $500. All applicants must be Wyoming residents.

Funding decisions are made by The Salvation Army, which reviews applications and assesses eligibility based on need, lack of other resources and available Energy Share funds. Individuals interested in applying for funds should contact their local Salvation Army, or call toll-free 877-461-5719, to determine your local Salvation Army field representative.

For those wishing to make a tax-deductible contribution, sponsoring utilities include instructions in their fall and winter billing statements. In areas without a sponsoring utility, individuals may send their tax-deductible donations to Energy Share of Wyoming, c/o Align, 1401 Airport Parkway, Suite 300, Cheyenne, WY 82001-1543.

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