LINCOLN — With winter creeping ever closer and oil costs still at near-record highs, town officials renewed their call Wednesday for donations to their unique heating fuel-aid program, which targets those who cannot get help elsewhere.
The Town Council voted 5-0 in January to approve the program, which might have been the first such municipally funded program for its own residents in the state. The council authorized the contribution of $5,000 to it from the town’s $16,000 Landfill Timber Harvest account, which contains profits from town wood sales.
The program received another $2,270 in donations, interim Town Manager Lisa Goodwin said in a release.
“We had a lot come through the mail and seasonal taxpayers, summer residents, sent in donations as well. It was awfully nice that they sent that,” Deputy Town Clerk Diana Hill said Wednesday.
Residents from Connecticut and Florida were among those who made donations.
“We had everything from $5 or $10 to $100, even $300 come in,” Hill said of the donation amounts.
More than 22 families received aid. The program targets households that fail to meet General Assistance, The Salvation Army or LIHEAP standards — typically senior citizens or single parents — and who have less than a quarter tank of home heating oil or other energy source and need 50 to 100 gallons.
As of Wednesday, oil costs in the Bangor area averaged about $4.02 per gallon, with kerosene costs at $4.19 per gallon, according to maineoil.com. Statewide, home heating oil prices averaged about $3.34 per gallon, about $1.11 per gallon more than the year before, when the program was launched in January.
The town and Rand Advertising of Lincoln opened the new round of contributions last week with $5,000 and $50 donations, respectively. An anonymous donor gave another $100.
Anyone interested in donating to the program can mail them payable to Town of Lincoln, 63 Main St., Lincoln 04457. Donors are listed on the town Web site, www.lincolnmaine.org, and a tab on donation levels is kept there.
For more information, contact town Treasurer Gilberte Mayo at 794-3372.