Weatherization

Federal Energy Assistance Program Funds Help Keep Daisy Warm

Daisy Blash received a new furnace and insulation at her home thanks to the additional money from the federal weatherization program. 

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It was part of the infrastructure bill signed earlier this month by President Joe Biden and it will help thousands of individuals lower their heating bills this winter. 

“At that point, I didn’t have no heat at all and it was in the wintertime. So they came by and helped me. They rescued me,” Daisy Blash of Waterbury says. 

Blash has a new furnace and insulation thanks to the additional money from the federal weatherization program. 

“I’m comfortable because at first I had to walk around with coats on trying to keep warm so this was a help to me,” Blash says. 

Blash says she’s grateful for the assistance and doesn’t know where she would be without it. 

“I would have had to be out begging I guess, cause I didn’t have the money. People would have probably helped me, but I’m the person whose quiet,” Blash says. 

“We did insulation in the attic and the basement. We gave them a brand new heating system 80% efficiency to 95% efficiency,” John Ferguson, weatherization director of New Opportunities, says.  

Ferguson, who coordinated the improvements, says they also replaced the gutters, light bulbs, fans, and tightened the seal between the windows and doors. 

“She’s saving anywhere between $300 and $400 a year, but also she’s saving energy because she has to cool the house less and heat the house less,” Ferguson says. 

Ferguson says anyone who qualifies for federal energy assistance also qualifies for the weatherization program and can apply through one of the nine community action agencies. 

“Connecticut will be receiving millions of additional dollars to do weatherization because there is $3.5 billion in the infrastructure program recently passed by the congress and signed by the president,” U.S. Sen. Richard Blumenthal says. 

Blumenthal says Connecticut is expected to receive $33 million. 

“Weatherization costs are investments that will ripple through the economy and help provide more jobs as well as savings,” he added. 

For the 87-year-old widow it means a warm winter. 

“I didn’t have the money at the time so anytime anyone comes to do something nice for me I appreciate that,” Blash says. 

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