- Associated Press - Saturday, October 27, 2018

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) - U.S. Sen. Jack Reed says more than $23 million in federal funding is available to help Rhode Island families and seniors keep warm this winter.

The Rhode Island Democrat says the Trump Administration proposed eliminating the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program. Reed and Republican Sen. Susan Collins, of Maine, led an effort to prevent that. They secured $3.69 billion in a fiscal 2019 appropriations bill.

Reed says he and Collins recently led a bipartisan letter, urging the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to release the funds quickly.

Reed says the money helps families and seniors not have to decide between paying their heating bills and paying for other essentials.

Rhode Island’s funding is administered by the Department of Human Services. About 35,000 people received assistance last year.

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