Applications accepted for Elgin water bill assistance grants

  • The Salvation Army Elgin Corps has partnered with the city of Elgin to administer a water bill assistance program that will offer one-time grants up to $400 toward any previous or current utility bill.

    The Salvation Army Elgin Corps has partnered with the city of Elgin to administer a water bill assistance program that will offer one-time grants up to $400 toward any previous or current utility bill. Rick West | Staff Photographer

 
 
Updated 4/26/2021 6:21 PM

Applications are being accepted for one-time water bill assistance grants to help Elgin residents negatively affected by COVID-19.

The city has partnered with the Salvation Army of Elgin Corps to administer the grants, which can be worth up to $400 to pay toward any previous or current city bill for refuse, sewer and water.

 

Qualified residents can download applications and get more information at cityofelgin.org/billassistance. Applications will be reviewed by the Salvation Army on a first-come, first-served basis.

"Since the onset of the pandemic, the city of Elgin has ensured residents have access to basic needs, and staff has adjusted practices in recognition that many residents are struggling financially," Mayor David Kaptain said in a news release. "The city has now allocated funding to be applied to water bills of those residents in need."

More than 1,500 accounts were more than 90 days past due when the grant issue was last brought before the city council. The council voted 7-2 during its April 14 meeting to use $400,000 from the Grand Victoria Riverboat Fund for the program.

The city recently began issuing shut-off notices to the accounts most in arrears, since many assistance programs require such documentation.

The Salvation Army will administer the program, reviewing and approving applications for assistance. Applications will be accepted directly by Salvation Army of Elgin. The city will not accept applications.

The grants are available for Elgin residents with active water utility accounts who have received a water shut-off notice from the city. Applicants need to have a photo ID matching the name on the bill and demonstrate a need for financial assistance, such as pay stubs showing reduction in income or letters indicating termination or furlough.

Elgin is also offering payment plans to residents with delinquent water bills. Payments can be made over a period of up to 12 months. More information is available on that program at cityofelgin.org/billassistance.

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