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Some Income Limit Changes Are Due for N.J. Programs That Help You Pay Your Utility Bill

Rockland Electric Company, and its utility company neighbors in New Jersey, are helping to get the word out about some very important changes in the eligibility standards for the programs that are available to provide financial assistance to low-moderate income families who are having difficulty paying their utility bills.

At the outset of the COVID-19 pandemic, many customers struggled to pay their utility bills. During that period, several of the state’s utility assistance programs provided emergency aid by significantly increasing their income limits. Now that the COVID-19 emergency has passed, those programs that expanded their income limits plan to gradually contract them to return to normal operations. Chief among the programs that will see changes are:


LIHEAP or HEAP is a federally funded program that helps low-moderate income households pay for heating costs (all fuel types). Even if your heat is included in your rent, you may qualify. LIHEAP grants also are available for medically necessary cooling costs. Applications are accepted from October 1 through June 30 each year. One of the significant benefit changes in LIHEAP deals with income eligibility. Check the chart below for the new income limits.


USF is a program that provides monthly credits on income eligible residential electric and natural gas bills. Monthly USF credit amounts are based on energy costs in relation to income. The new LIHEAP income limits now also will apply to USF participants. The Fresh Start Program provides eligible USF customers with an opportunity to earn bill forgiveness on their overdue balances. Starting October 1, 2024, qualified USF customers will be automatically enrolled into the Fresh Start program by their utility company once every five years.

FY 2024 USF/HEA INCOME LIMIT Monthly Pre-tax Income Limits • 10/01/2023- 9/30/2024

Household Size | Monthly | Annual

1                              $3,676        $44,111

2                              $4,807        $57,684

3                              $5,938        $71,257

4                              $7,069        $84,830

5                              $8,200        $98,402

6                              $9,331        $111,975

7                              $9,543        $114,520

8                              $9,755        $117,065

9                              $9,968        $119,610

10                            $10,180      $122,155

11                            $10,392      $124,700

12                            $10,604      $127,245

Any additional member after 12: add $213/month Apply online after October 1, 2023 at For more information or to request an application, please go to or call toll free 1-800-510-3102.

About Rockland Electric Company

Rockland Electric Company is a regulated electric utility that serves 73,000 customers in parts of Bergen, Passaic and Sussex counties in New Jersey. Rockland Electric is a wholly owned subsidiary of Orange and Rockland Utilities, Inc., which in turn is owned by Consolidated Edison, Inc.