Released: Mar 23, 2023
AUGUSTA – In celebration of World Water Day, MaineHousing is announcing it will increase the maximum benefit for the Maine Water Assistance Program.
The program, funded with federal pandemic relief funding, is meant to help low to moderate income households who have fallen behind on a water utility payment including water and sewer services.
The program will stop accepting new applicants to the program as of July 1, 2023. This new application end date is necessary to ensure program funding does not run out with eligible applicants still waiting for assistance. Under the federal rules for the program all funding must be committed prior to September 30, 2023.
Eligible households will now be able to receive up to $1,000 in credit for a future water and/or wastewater bill. Households who previously received a $500 credit for either a water or wastewater bill, will also be eligible for an additional $500 credit and will not have to reapply to the program for that benefit.
Households that are eligible for the program can have past due water and wastewater bills paid off and may also be eligible to receive a future $500 credit for both water and wastewater costs.
"We are pleased to be able to increase the benefit for those who may need help staying caught up on a water or wastewater bill," said MaineHousing Senior Director of Operations Jamie Johnson. "Doing this on World Water Day makes good sense. This program has not only helped hundreds of Maine people keep their water running it also has helped water and wastewater providers across the state. These critical utility partners make sure Maine homes have safe, reliable water and wastewater treatment facilities. Boosting this benefit on World Water Day is a symbolic gesture of our support for the important work they do."
World Water Day is a UNESCO celebration that has been held every year on March 22nd since 1993. It is meant to raise awareness of the 2 billion people around the globe who do not have access to safe and reliable water sources while encouraging water conservation and resource protection.
Since its launch in 2022, the Maine Water Assistance Program has helped 1,018 households and has paid close to $624,000 on past due water and wastewater bills. The program provides a payment directly to water and wastewater utilities on behalf of the ratepayer.For more information about the Maine Water Assistance Program or to see if you may be eligible visit www.mainehousing.org and click on the Maine Water Assistance Program button.