Weekly Feature

2017-11-29 / Editorials

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HEAP OUTREACH DATES — The Erie County Legislature Majority Caucus recently announced that 2017-18 Home Energy Assistance Program outreaches will be held throughout the county to assist residents in need this year. Attendees do not have to live in the specific municipality hosting the outreach to attend.

Interviews will begin at 9 a.m. and will continue until 4 p.m. Doors open at 8:30 a.m. Newstead and Clarence outreaches start at 10 a.m. All applicants will be interviewed.

HEAP is a federally funded program to assist income-eligible Erie County residents with the costs of home heating, electricity and energy conservation. The HEAP outreach will be administered by the Erie County departments of Social Services and Senior Services and is open to all income-eligible households.

Legislator Edward Rath will host HEAP outreaches from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Friday, Dec. 1, at the Newstead Public Library, 33 Main St., Akron. Another scheduled outreach is from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Thursday, Jan. 11, at the Clarence Public Library, 3 Town Place, Clarence.

FASNY WINTER TIPS — Across New York State, the home-heating season is beginning in earnest. The Firemen’s Association of the State of New York reminds residents to take precautions during these cold winter months, as heating is one of the leading causes of residential fires. In particular, FASNY urges residents and landlords using alternative home heating sources to take extra care.

A high percentage of residential fires occur during the winter months, and a significant number of these fires are caused by home heating systems, according to FASNY President Ken Pienkowski.

According to the National Fire Protection Association, there is an historically elevated risk of dying from fire during the winter season, with December, January and February generally being the deadliest months for fires.

In addition to having properly operating smoke alarms, it is critical for homeowners to install carbon monoxide alarms to detect production of potentially lethal carbon monoxide by gas fireplaces, gas stoves, barbecues, and gas furnaces.

FASNY offers these safety tips when using portable space heaters: Never connect a space heater to an outlet with an extension cord. Unplug the unit when not in use. Let it cool down prior to storing the unit, and never use heaters to dry clothing or other combustibles.

COMMUNITY SERVICES DONATION — Community Services for the Developmentally Disabled Inc. recently announced its receipt of a generous donation from M&T Bank, as the company donated $32,255 in furniture and technology to the new Jefferson Career Center.

The center will provide hands-on learning suites to prepare the disabled for employment. The site will also offer an after-school respite program for children, providing them with a safe and engaging environment.

The donation included items such as tables, desks, cabinets, chairs, bookcases, artwork, computers and more. These pieces will help furnish the learning suites, offices, administrative spaces and reception area.

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