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      Schumer pushes for heating relief in wake of 'polar vortex'

      With record low temperatures and extreme winter weather hitting New York this past week, Senator Chuck Schumer is urging the Department of Health and Human Services to help New Yorkers with rising heating costs.

      Schumer is asking HHS to immediately release over $35 million in funds not yet used from the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program that will go to New Yorkers. He's also urging congressional colleagues on the Senate Appropriations Committee to increase funding for LIHEAP in the bill that's currently being negotiated, providing more funds from mid January through the end of September.

      Schumer says the federal government should not be holding back funds as Upstate New Yorkers face historic frigid temperatures caused by the polar vortex. LIHEAP helps fund heating costs for Upstate New York??s low-income homeowners and senior citizens, and according to Schumer, funding has declined since 2011.