"I'm just so cold" — woman without heat for weeks turns to I-Team for help
UPDATE: As of Wednesday, December 21, Peggy Lane told us no one has been to her home to start the bid process and she is still without a working boiler. Many of our viewers have contacted the CBS 13 I-Team wondering how they can help. A friend set-up a GoFundMe page to help Peggy get a new boiler.
WEST GARDINER (WGME) — On this coldest day of the season, a West Gardiner woman doesn't have any heat.
Peggy Lane has been living in the cold in her home for more than a month now and it's all because of a fight over her boiler.
"It's been a nightmare, it's just been a complete nightmare," Lane said.
As the wind whips outside, frost covers the windows of her home.
"I'm really cold, and I'm miserable, but I'm just trying to get through this the best I can because I know people have it worse than I do," Lane said.
She said she hasn't had any heat since early November when her boiler cracked and leaked all over the basement.
Since then she's been trying to get low income assistance to replace it.
"Obviously I do not have the money or I would put the boiler in," Lane said.
She got a letter Thursday from KVCAP, which administers federal funding, telling her they could help, but would have to put the project out to bid.
"I'm just so cold. People shouldn't live like this; it's not right," she said.
Lane called the CBS 13 On Your Side I-Team to see if we could help.
We asked KVCAP if there's a process for emergency heating assistance.
KVCAP CEO Suzanne Walsh called back to explain based on funding rules, they're required to get the lowest price for every project.
"We have to operate under very strict guidelines because we're ambassadors of federal funds," Walsh said.
However, after talking with Maine Housing, she said they'll now work to expedite the bid process and get the boiler replaced.
"We definitely want to work the homeowner and make sure she is warm and safe," Walsh said.
KVCAP also told us they'd send over some larger space heaters and would start getting bids Friday.
If you need heat help, Maine Housing suggests you apply for the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP).
As of Friday, we're told 32,700 applications have been processed in Maine and the average benefit so far this heating season is $732.