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Get help with your heating bill

Rochester, N.Y. - When youre out in the cold all day, you want to go home and crank up the heat to stay warm.

That can cause your heating bill to spike.

RG&E said consumption and demand drive up the price for electricity and natural gas from suppliers, who set the price. That means many customers see higher heating bills in the winter.

Tiffany DePorras said her bill has doubled in the last month. She doesnt have trouble paying, but has in the past and asked RG&E for help to set up a payment plan.

RG&E offers payment plans and a budget option, which allows you to pay the same price each month and avoid spikes in your bill during the winter.

In addition to that, there are heating assistance programs that provide help for those who need it.

HEAP, the countys Home Energy Assistance Program helped 65-thousand people in Rochester this year. They must meet income guidelines and can receive a credit towards their heating costs.

There is also Project Share. RG&E customers donate to this fund to provide emergency help for people having troubling paying their bill.

HEAP is funded through a Federal grant, which is then passed down to the state and the county. It has been extended until March because of the extreme cold temperatures this year.

But RG&E Spokesman Dan Hucko urges customers not to wait if they need help. He said the money for HEAP and other programs runs out fast and the last thing the company wants to do is shut off service to customers. So if youre in trouble, call and they will work with you.

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Washington Times