Utility bill assistance resources for Nebraskans

Originally Published: January 26, 2024

Utility bill assistance resources for Nebraskans

With all the snow and cold Nebraska has experienced in January, utility and electric bills have been going up for residents. There are several statewide and regional programs to help alleviate higher costs.

Financial Assistance 

There are several statewide and regional programs to support low-income households with utility related expenses.


An energy assistance program, Pennies for Power, was established to help disadvantaged families pay energy-related expenses. It is administered by the Nebraska 2-1-1 hosted by the United Way of Midlands, which screens and determines program eligibility.

The Nebraska Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) offers financial assistance to low-income households, cooling costs and assistance with immediate energy needs.


The Catholic Social Services of Southern Nebraska offers immediate assistance to those struggling to pay rent or utilities.

Metropolitan Utilities District (MUD) helps pay utility bills. Applicants must have a past-due balance and be experiencing a variety of issues that prove they need assistance. Issues like a fiscal crisis due to a confirmed emergency, income at or below 200% of the federal poverty level or a household containing one or more individuals who are 60+ and the only source of income is social security. Applicants are also automatically income-eligible if they currently receive government assistance and benefits.

If residents do not meet the eligibility requirements but are in an acute fiscal crisis, they reach out to a partnering agency to determine eligibility.

If residents are still struggling to make their utility bills but cannot find resources in their area, there are two sites to help residents – the Nebraska ERA Portal and  Nebraska.findhelp.com can help residents find affordable services like housing and rental assistance.

Energy Efficiency

Another way to decrease utility costs is to improve your home’s energy production.

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has resources Nebraska’s energy efficiency programs.

Omaha Public Power District serves thirteen counties in the Southwest corner of Nebraska. Their site has tips to preserve energy inside your home during every season. Even trivial things like sealing extra windows, closing fireplaces, and keeping your thermostat at the same temperature can maintain energy.

If residents are lost on how to prepare for any stage of a winter storm, Black Hills Energy has helpful posts.

For Northwestern Nebraskans, the utility company Northwestern Energy has created the Energy Plus E+ program to reduce energy and save money.


Weatherization helps low-income families make their homes more energy efficient by reducing their energy bills. This service operates on a whole-house approach, according to the Nebraska Department of Environment and Energy. This solution allows companies to evaluate the house in a single unit to find the best methods for the entire residency.

To receive free weatherization services, residents’ income must fall below 200% of the federal poverty level, revised annually.

If residents meet the minimum requirements and get approval there is a home evaluation to identify the most effective energy and dollar-saving adjustments. There are several improvements for weather acclimation – including adding insulation, natural gas, propane and fuel oil furnace, boilers and water heater inspections. Repairs like fixing broken glass and adjusting door weatherstripping can also keep air out.

Community Action is a non-profit organization that has numerous services throughout the state, including weatherization. While based in Lincoln, Community Action has offices all throughout the state.

  • Northwest Community Action Partnership – Weatherization assistance that makes qualifying homes more efficient and, therefore, more affordable.
  • Central Nebraska Community Action Partnership
  • Community Action Partnership of Mid-Nebraska
  • Blue Valley Community Action Partnership
  • Northeast Nebraska Community Action Partnership

The Nebraska Department of Environment and Energy has a map of each office on their site to access these types of services.

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