Resources that help in difficult times 

Emergencies can happen to anyone, any time. Community Action Marin provides access to the appropriate programs. We provide help with energy or water bill assistance so you can be at home, and have the lights on, and water running. 

Energy Assistance

The Energy Assistance program is designed to help people in the neighborhood where they are currently living or at an agency where they may already be receiving services. For assistance, customers must choose a primary heat source; PG&E, Wood or Propane and may get help only once a year.

Community Action Marin is the local administrator of the federally-funded Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP). Our Energy Program is also a conduit for other energy assistance and residential conservation programs. Reaching over 800 households each year, our Low-Income Energy Assistance Program ensures that families get assistance with utility payments and wood and propane home energy costs. 

LIHEAP helps families living on low incomes pay their heating bills in the form of a cash grant. It is a one-time payment sent directly to the utility company or fuel provider and will appear as a credit on your bill. 

See “The Process” section below to learn how to apply. People living in West Marin can also apply at the West Marin Community Resource Center, 415.663.8361. 

People who rely primarily on wood or propane for heating can also get assistance. The eligibility and the process are the same as those for LIHEAP with the following modifications: 

  • Propane customers: Need to bring their account information including their latest bill. 
  • Wood customers: Work directly with Community Action Marin’s vendor to get them a cord of wood. No bill required.  

  1. Applications can be requested by calling our intake specialist at 415.526.7550 to schedule an appointment. You may also apply directly through the California Online LIHEAP Application.  Eligibility and assistance level is based on household size, gross monthly income, and program priorities. 
  2. Once an application is complete, we will notify you of approval or denial within 30 days. All payments are made within 45 days after approval of an application. 
  3. The amount you may receive depends on your eligibility. You will be informed on the amount of assistance that you will receive at the time of your appointment. 
  4. Assistance is a one-time payment that is sent directly to the utility company or fuel provider and will appear as a credit on your bill. The amount you may receive depends on your eligibility. You will be informed on the amount of assistance that you will receive at the time of your appointment. You can only apply for emergency assistance once in a year from October 1 – September 30. 

You may qualify for the LIHEAP or Wood & Propane program if your gross monthly household income is less than: 

  • $2,564.73 for a family of 1
  • $3,353.87 for a family of 2 
  • $4,143.02​ for a family of 3 
  • $4,932.17 for a family of 4 
  • $5,721.31​ for a family of 5 
  • $6,510.46 for a family of 6
  • $6,658.43 for a family of 7
  • $6,806.39 for a family of 8 
  • $6,954.36 for a family of 9
  • $7,102.32​ for a family of 10

To apply, you’ll need the following: 

  • Recent copies of your utility bill (Must include all pages and show 30 billing days.) 
  • Final Utility Termination Notice (If you’ve received a 14-day, 48-hour, or shutoff notice from your energy company, that should be included with your utility bill). 
  • Recent pay stubs or other proof of income that shows your current monthly gross income (This must account for 30 consecutive days of income.) 
  • Documentation showing income from Social Security, Cal Fresh, Unemployment Insurance, Pension Funds, disability, etc. (Examples: Notice of Action, Passport to Services, most recent bank statement showing direct deposit, copy of current check, dated annual benefit letter, payee letter showing income amount, Form 4926, Form 2458, or a HUD statement with a SS amount.) 
  • Other income sources such as Self-employment, Child Support, Odd Job Requirements (current copy of ledger/journal, or a signed self-employment statement showing monthly gross income). 
  • For households with zero income, a self-declaration of zero income attestation form will be requested (Please speak to an intake specialist to request a copy of this form.) 
  • For Wood or Propane assistance a recent invoice is required (the invoice must match your service address listed on your application.) 

We’d be happy to answer any questions you might have. Simply send an email to [email protected] and a member of our team will get back to you.

Water Assistance

Community Action Marin can now help you receive help with your water bill through the Low Income Household Water Assistance Program (LIHWAP).  

The new federal LIHWAP program will provide financial assistance to low-income Californians to help manage their residential water utility costs. Established by Congress in December 2020, Water Assistance is a one-time benefit and a household may receive one benefit payment for:

  • Water or Wastewater (including stormwater charges) or
  • Both Water and Wastewater if the bill includes both services during the program period of May 2022 through August 31, 2023

The benefit amount maximum is $2,000 and can be applied to either the water or wastewater bill with the LIHWAP benefit amount based on the customer’s past due amount, current charges, fees and taxes, and other charges associated with the water or wastewater services identified on the customer’s bill. For customers with utilities included in rent, the benefit amount is based on the amount indicated in the Landlord Agreement.

Assistance is sent directly to the water provider and will appear as a credit on your bill. See the tabs below to see if you qualify for the program and how to apply. 

Applications can be requested by calling our intake specialist at 415.526.7550 to schedule an appointment. You may also apply directly through the California Online LIHWAP Application 

Eligibility and assistance level is based on household size, gross monthly income, and program priorities and you can qualify it you: 

  • Have a past due amount on your water or wastewater bill
  • Receive service from a community water system or wastewater treatment provider (private wells and septic excluded), and
  • Use water or wastewater system that opted into the program. 

Once an application is complete, we will notify you of approval or denial within 30 days. All payments are made within 45 days after approval of an application.  

You will be informed on the amount of assistance that you will receive at the time of your appointment.  

If any member of the household is a “current recipient” of LIHEAP, they are categorically eligible for LIHWAP and do not need to provide income documentation. A household is a “current recipient” of LIHEAP if their eligibility determination date is within 120 days of the LIHWAP intake date.

To apply, you’ll need the following:

  • A completed LIHWAP CSD41 application
  • Proof of Government Identification
  • Proof of Income
  • Past Due utility Bill and/or Final Water Termination Notice

You may qualify for LIHWAP if your gross monthly household income is less than:
2022 LIHWAP Income Eligibility

  • $2,564.73 for a family of 1
  • $3,353.87 for a family of 2
  • $4,143.02 for a family of 3
  • $4,932.17 for a family of 4
  • $5,721.31 for a family of 5
  • $6,510.46 for a family of 6
  • $6,658.43 for a family of 7
  • $6,806.39 for a family of 8
  • $6,954.36 for a family of 9
  • $7,102.32 for a family of 10

What is allowable proof of government issued identification? 

  1. State identification (ID) card
  2. Tribal identification (ID) card
  3. Driver license
  4. U.S. passport or passport card
  5. U.S. military card (front and back)
  6. Military dependent’s ID card (front and back)
  7. Permanent Resident Card
  8. Certificate of Citizenship
  9. Certificate of Naturalization
  10. Employment Authorization Document

Please note that: 

  • An expired government issued ID is acceptable for a period of one year from expiration date. 
  • For seniors 60 and over, an expired government issued ID is acceptable regardless of expiration date. 
  • If the first name (other than an abbreviation) or the last name is different than what appears on a government id, applicants must submit a document that establishes the person’s full true name, such as:
    • Adoption documents that contain the legal names as a result of adoption 
    • A name change document that contains the legal name both before and after the name change 
    • Marriage certificate 
    • A certificate, declaration, or registration document verifying the formation of a domestic partnership 
    • Dissolution of marriage/domestic partnership document that contains the legal name as a result of the court action 

If the applicant is unable to obtain the documentation of name change, the applicant is to provide a signed self-certification of the name change and attesting that the name indicated on the government ID is the same as the applicant.

What are acceptable methods for proof of income? 

  1. Recent pay stubs or other proof of income that shows your current monthly gross income (This must account for 30 consecutive days of income.)  
  2. Documentation showing income from Social Security, Cal Fresh, Unemployment Insurance, Pension Funds, disability, etc. (Examples: Notice of Action, Passport to Services, most recent bank statement showing direct deposit, copy of current check, dated annual benefit letter, payee letter showing income amount, Form 4926, Form 2458, or a HUD statement with a SS amount.)  
  3. Other income sources such as Self-employment, Child Support, Odd Job Requirements (current copy of ledger/journal, or a signed self-employment statement showing monthly gross income).  
  4. For households with zero income, a self-declaration of zero income attestation form will be requested (Please speak to an intake specialist to request a copy of this form.) 

If you have more questions, we’d be happy to answer them. Simply send an email to [email protected] and a member of our team will get back to you. 

Does your bill need to be past due ? 

Yes, an applicant must have debt owed to a water and/or wastewater system (herein after referred to as water system) from nonpayment (past due balance) of residential accounts that accrued during any time period to be eligible to receive benefits, or an applicant with water or wastewater utilities included in rent must be past due on their rent. 

Pet Security Deposit Help

Have a pet? We know that finding the right home for you, your family and your pets can be challenging. Even more so if there’s an additional cost of a pet security deposit. No one should have to give up their beloved pet because they can’t afford these costs.

The Marin Humane Society has generously partnered with Community Action Marin to provide up to $500 towards a pet security deposit for qualifying individuals or families. This financial support will be paid directly to the housing manager or landlord.

To qualify, pet owners must:

  • Be 18 years or older and the legal guardian of the pet(s).
  • Live in or moving to a rental property in Marin County
  • Have their pet spayed or neutered (Marin Humane can assist with this upon acceptance into the program)
  • Have their dog(s) licensed in Marin County