NASHVILLE, Tenn. – The coronavirus pandemic is more than a health crisis. For many Tennesseans who have lost their jobs or have seen their hours reduced, it is a growing economic crisis as well.
After food, water and medicine, electric power is critical – especially during a time of crisis – for maintaining health, safety, comfort and connection. Tennessee’s electric cooperatives are working to ensure that energy remains reliable and affordable for everyone we serve.
Co-ops are aware of the financial hardships that many families and small businesses are facing, and we want to make you aware of several resources that are available to help you pay your energy bills.
Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program. An existing program, LIHEAP is a federally funded grant program that helps low-income households meet their immediate home energy needs. The LIHEAP fund received a sizable allocation of new federal money as part of the recent coronavirus stimulus program. LIHEAP funds are distributed through local community service agencies.
Community Assistance Agencies
Blount County Community Action Agency, Inc
(865) 983-8411 | Serving: Blount
(423) 479-4111 | Serving: Bradley
Chattanooga Youth and Family Development
(423) 643-6434 | Serving: Hamilton
Clarksville-Montgomery County CAC
(931) 896-1800 | Serving: Montgomery
Delta Human Resources Agency
(901) 476-5226 | Serving: Fayette, Lauderdale and Tipton
Douglas-Cherokee Economic Authority, Inc.
(423) 318-6933 | Serving: Cocke, Grainger, Hamblen, Jefferson, Monroe and Sevier
East Tennessee Human Resource Agency (ETHRA)
(865) 691-2551 | Serving: Anderson, Campbell,Claiborne, Morgan, Scott and Union
Highland Rim Economic Corporation
(931) 289-4101 | Serving: Dickson, Houston, Humphreys and Stewart
Knoxville-Knox County CAC
(865) 637-6700 | Serving: Knox
Metropolitan Action Commission
(615) 862-8860 | Serving: Davidson
(615) 742-1113 | Serving: Cheatham, Robertson,Rutherford, Sumner, Trousdale, Williamson and Wilson
Mid-East Community Action Agency
(865) 354-0450 | Serving: Loudon and Roane
Northwest TN Economic Development Council
(731) 364-3228 | Serving: Benton, Carroll, Crockett,Dyer, Gibson, Henry, Lake, Obion and Weakley
Shelby County CSA
(901) 222-4270 | Serving: Shelby
South Central HRA
(931) 433-7182 | Serving: Bedford, Coffee, Franklin,Giles, Hickman, Lawrence, Lewis,Lincoln, Marshall, Maury, Moore, Perry and Wayne
Southeast Tennessee HRA
(423) 949-2191 | Serving: Bledsoe, Grundy, Marion, McMinn, Meigs, Polk, Rhea and Sequatchie
(731) 989-5111 | Serving: Chester, Decatur, Hardeman, Hardin, Haywood, Henderson, Madison and McNairy
Upper Cumberland HRA
(931) 528-1127 | Serving: Cannon, Clay, Cumberland, DeKalb, Fentress, Jackson, Macon, Overton, Pickett, Putnam, Smith, Van Buren, Warren and White
Upper East Tennessee HDA
(423) 246-6180 | Serving: Carter, Greene, Hancock,Hawkins, Johnson, Sullivan, Unicoi and Washington
Local charitable and religious agencies. Electric co-ops maintain relationships with local ministries and charities that can often assist families with emergency energy needs. Contact your local office to learn more.
Emergency universal income payment. Adult taxpayers earning $75,000 or less will receive $1,200 plus an additional $500 for each dependent. This means that a family of four with a household income of $150,000 or less will receive $3,400 from the federal government. These funds can be used for food, medicine, housing, utility bills or anything else needed by the family. The IRS will be distributing the funds soon.
Small Business Administration (SBA) Resources. The SBA is assisting small business with disaster relief efforts. Visit SBA’s COVID-19 webpage for information on funding options, guidance for business and employers and more.
USDA Rural Development Resources. USDA Rural Development is taking action to help rural businesses and communities impacted by COVID-19. Visit USDA Rural Development’s COVID-19 webpage for resource guides, fact sheets and more information.
IRS/Employee Retention Credit. The Employee Retention Credit is a refundable tax credit against certain employment taxes. Visit the IRS Employee Retention Credit webpage for more information on eligibility.
Electric co-ops have committed to keep the lights on for all Tennesseans who have been impacted by the pandemic. If you are unable to pay your bill due to the financial impact of the pandemic, contact your electric cooperative.