LIHEAP AT-2021-02 Performance Data Form for FY 2020

Publication Date: March 5, 2021

Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program
Action Transmittal

AT#: LIHEAP-AT-2021-02

DATE: March 5, 2021

TO: LOW INCOME HOME ENERGY ASSISTANCE PROGRAM (LIHEAP) STATE  GRANTEES, THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA, AND OTHER INTERESTED PARTIES

SUBJECT: LIHEAP Performance Data Form for Fiscal Year (FY) 2020

ATTACHMENT(S):

A. Instructions for the LIHEAP Performance Data Form for FY 2020
B. Excel Template of LIHEAP Performance Data Form for FY 2020


RELATED REFERENCES:
Section 2610(b) of the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Act, Title XXVI of the Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1981, Public Law 97-35, as amended; ACF’s annual LIHEAP Performance Data Form (OMB Control No. 0970-0449; form Expiration Date — March 31, 2021).

PURPOSE:

  1. To advise State LIHEAP Grantees and the District of Columbia that the deadline for submitting preliminary data on the LIHEAP Performance Data Form for FY 2020 (for the period of October 1, 2019 to September 30, 2020) is March 26, 2021;

  2. To advise State LIHEAP Grantees and the District of Columbia that HHS has changed the approach for submitting the Performance Data Form for FFY 2020. Initial submissions of the LIHEAP Performance Data Form for FY 2020 must be completed using a designated Microsoft Excel Spreadsheet and submitted to OCS using the online Basecamp platform. The template spreadsheet is Attachment B hereto.

  3. To advise State LIHEAP Grantees and the District of Columbia that HHS has made non-substantive, OMB approved changes to the LIHEAP Performance Data Form for FY 2020. These changes include additional reporting lines and items to allow for separate reporting in Module 1 (the Grantee Survey) for funds and benefits provided by the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (the CARES Act) (P. L. 116-136).

  4. To advise State LIHEAP Grantees and the District of Columbia that there are no changes to the reporting items in Module 2 (the Performance Measures). The required reporting requirements for Module 2 (the Performance Measures) remain unchanged from the prior LIHEAP Performance Data Form for FY 2019. The data items in Optional Module 3 are also unchanged.

  5. To advise State LIHEAP Grantees and the District of Columbia that OCS has pre-populated information in Module 1 (the Grantee Survey). All fields in Section III “Estimated Sources of LIHEAP Funds” are pre-populated based on OCS records. Grantees should review the pre-populated values to verify they are correct. Line 5 is editable and can be updated by grantees, but all other lines are locked from editing.

  6. To provide State LIHEAP Grantees and the District of Columbia with resources to assist with completing the FY 2020 Performance Data Form, including the instructions document, a Microsoft Excel Template, key reporting tips, and reporting reminders.

  7. Also, to advise State LIHEAP Grantees and the District of Columbia about technical assistance that is available through OCS in completing and submitting the FY 2020 LIHEAP Performance Data Form.

BACKGROUND:

The LIHEAP Performance Data Form is an annual report in response to Section 2610(b) of the LIHEAP statute (42 U.S.C. § 8629(b)) which requires the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to submit, no later than June 30 of each federal fiscal year, a Report to Congress on LIHEAP for the prior federal fiscal year. The completeness, accuracy, consistency, and timeliness of responses to data collections are needed for HHS to do the following:

  • Provide reliable and complete fiscal and household data to Congress in the Department’s LIHEAP Report to Congress for FY 2020; and
  • Respond to questions from the Congress, Department, OMB, White House, and other interested parties in a timely manner; and report LIHEAP performance results as part of the Administration’s annual Congressional Justification.

The LIHEAP Performance Data Form for FY 2020 will consist of three modules:

Module 1 (Grantee Survey)
Module 2 (Performance Measures)
Module 3 (Optional Performance Measures)

Module 1 (Grantee Survey) collects LIHEAP data on sources and uses of funds, average benefits, and maximum income cutoffs for four-person households for each type of LIHEAP assistance provided in FY 2020. All State LIHEAP Grantees and the District of Columbia are required to complete Module 1.

Module 2 (Performance Measures) collects LIHEAP data on energy burden targeting, the restoration of home energy service, and the prevention of loss of home energy service during FY 2020. All State LIHEAP Grantees and the District of Columbia are required to complete Module 2.

Module 3 (Optional Performance Measures) allows State LIHEAP Grantees and the District of Columbia to voluntarily report additional LIHEAP data on energy burden targeting, the restoration of home energy service, and the prevention of loss of home energy service during FY 2020. Module 3 is optional.

Please note that neither Indian tribes/tribal organizations nor territories complete this form.

CONTENT:

NEW FORM CHANGES FOR FY 2020 REPORTING

On March 27, 2020, the President signed into law the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act (Public Law 116-136). As part of the CARES Act, Congress appropriated supplemental funds for LIHEAP.

On May 8, 2020, HHS awarded the supplemental CARES Act funds to grantees and published a Dear Colleague Letter (DCL) announcing the release of these funds. The DCL notified grantees that “LIHEAP grantees must track, account for, and report on, the LIHEAP CARES Act supplemental funding separate from the rest of their FY 2020 funding. There will be additional reporting requirements specific to this supplemental funding.”

To separately identify the uses of the supplemental federal LIHEAP funding awarded during FFY 2020, HHS has added additional reporting lines and items to Module 1 (the Grantee Survey) to allow grantees to separately report on the CARES Act supplemental LIHEAP funds. The new reporting items for Module 1 (the Grantee Survey) include the following:

  • New lines to report on the dollar amount of CARES Act supplemental LIHEAP funds obligated for different types of assistance and other permitted uses. These are found in Section IV Parts D, E and F.
  • A new line (Line 21 of Section IV Part E) to report on the dollar amount of CARES Act supplemental LIHEAP funds that were not obligated during FFY 2020 and which the grantee elected to carry over for obligation during FFY 2021.
  • New lines to report on the average household benefit amount for CARES Act supplemental LIHEAP funds, by type of assistance. These are found in Section IV Part D.
  • New lines to report on the maximum annual dollar income amount for a four-person household for assistance provided using CARES Act supplemental LIHEAP funds, by type of assistance. These are found in Section IV Part D.
  • A new line (Line 11 of Section III) to report the CARES Act Allotment [Note: This will be pre-populated by OCS].

In addition to these changes, OCS also added reserved lines in the event that other federal supplemental funds were issued. These lines are not applicable for the FY 2020 Performance Data Form and will not be accessible.

All changes made to the FY 2020 Performance Data Form only impact Module 1 (the Grantee Survey) and do not impact Module 2 (the Performance Measures). The required reporting requirements for Module 2 (the Performance Measures) remain unchanged from the prior LIHEAP Performance Data Form for FY 2019. Grantees should report Performance Measures data in Module 2 for households assisted with any federal LIHEAP funds, including the CARES Act supplemental LIHEAP funds.

NEW SUBMISSION INSTRUCTIONS

HHS has changed the approach for submitting the Performance Data Form for FFY 2020. The submission approach for the Performance Data Form for FFY 2020 will include four steps.

  • OCS will provide each State LIHEAP Grantee and the District of Columbia with a Microsoft Excel Spreadsheet. Each grantee will receive their own specific spreadsheet that includes pre-populated information on the sources of available funds during FFY 2020.
  • Each State LIHEAP Grantee and the District of Columbia will need to enter their final report information into their designated Microsoft Excel Spreadsheet.
  • Each State LIHEAP Grantee and the District of Columbia will be contacted by their regional LIHEAP liaison and provided with access to HHS’ online Basecamp platform. The completed Microsoft Excel Spreadsheet must be submitted by uploading the file to the online Basecamp platform by March 26, 2021.
  • Once your preliminary LIHEAP Performance Data Form for FY 2020 has been submitted, HHS’ contractor APPRISE will review your submitted report and notify you of any reporting questions and assist with resolving any potential reporting issues. Each state LIHEAP grantee and the District of Columbia will be notified to confirm their report is considered complete.

As described above, initial submissions of the FY 2020 Performance Data Form will be submitted using a designated Microsoft Excel Spreadsheet that must be uploaded to the online Basecamp platform. The Online Data Collection System (OLDC) will not be used for these initial submissions, and the report is not available in OLDC by the due date.

OCS recognizes the value of maintaining each year’s final report in the OLDC system.

Therefore, OCS will issue a subsequent Action Transmittal this summer regarding the separate deadline for final data to be submitted by each State LIHEAP Grantee and the District of Columbia via the OLDC system.

REPORTING RESOURCES

This Action Transmittal includes two attachments to assist grantees with preparing their report.

  • Attachment A provides the detailed instructions for completing the report.
  • Attachment B provides a template version of the Microsoft Excel Spreadsheet. [Please note: Each State Grantee and the District of Columbia will be provided with a customized version of this spreadsheet to use for completing and submitting their final report].

On behalf of OCS, APPRISE recently conducted multiple training webinars on completing the FY 2020 LIHEAP Performance Data Form. Training webinar recordings are published on the ACF LIHEAP Tools Training Resources webpage as they become available. Please contact APPRISE to receive copies of the training webinar slides.

KEY REPORTING TIPS

Please review the following reporting tips as they will enhance the quality and timeliness of submitting and finalizing reported LIHEAP data to our office:

  • Meet the reporting deadline. The deadline for submitting the report is March 26, 2021. If necessary, contact our office regarding challenges or assistance with completing the report.
  • Enter Data in the Applicable Fields. Information should be entered in the appropriate location per the instructions. Please note that the Performance Data Form spreadsheet will have cells that are highlighted because they are locked from editing. These cells are not applicable or not subject to editing.
  • Read and review the reporting instructions. Contact our office to clarify any instructions that are not clear. Understanding the reporting instructions will minimize our need to contact you for clarification or correction of your State’s reported data, saving both our agencies time and effort. This also will enhance our timeliness in compiling, editing, and reporting the data. These instructions appear in Attachment A.
  • Cross check for consistency. Check that the types of LIHEAP assistance reported on the LIHEAP Household Report and LIHEAP Performance Data Form are consistent with each other. Also, the types of LIHEAP assistance provided in FY 2020 need to be consistent with what is indicated in the State Plan for FY 2020, as amended. Indications of unobligated funds carried over to the next FY in the Performance Data Form should match the State’s FY 2020 Carryover and Reallotment Report.
  • Use the ’notes’ section. Clarify data in the ’notes’ section of the Form to explain why there may be missing or incomplete data and what is being done to rectify the problem(s).

IMPORTANT REMINDERS

  • "Uses of Funds" represent a State’s obligation of federal LIHEAP funds, not expenditure of federal LIHEAP funds. In some cases, obligated funds are not actually expended until after the end of the FY.
  • The total “Uses of Funds” (shown in Line 15 of Section III) should equal the total “Sources of Funds” (shown in Line 49 of Section IV).
  • Report the annual or annualized maximum income cutoff for a four-person household in effect on October 1, 2019 for each type of LIHEAP assistance provided in FY 2020.
  • Exclude the U.S. Department of Energy’s weatherization assistance funds in reporting on obligated federal LIHEAP weatherization assistance funds, if any, in Section IV of the Form.
  • Report on all federal LIHEAP funds used to provide "other LIHEAP assistance." For the most part, this would include "other crisis assistance" to provide furnace or air conditioner repairs or replacements.
  • Report on all federal LIHEAP funds obligated for "Other Permitted Uses of LIHEAP Funds." This includes Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) households that were provided a nominal non-crisis LIHEAP payment to increase the amount of SNAP benefits that they received.
  • HHS has pre-populated the “Sources of Funds” figures Section III. Make sure that the figures on these lines agree with those of your records. Line 5 is editable and can be updated by grantees, but all other lines are locked from Please review the instructions for further guidance on pre-populated data. editing.
  • The data reported in Module 2 (Performance Measures) should include households assisted with federal LIHEAP funds, including the CARES Act supplemental LIHEAP funds. The average benefit amounts in Part V should reflect all LIHEAP bill payment assistance benefits, including benefits funded with the CARES Act supplemental LIHEAP funds.

AVAILABLE TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE:

OCS has contracted with APPRISE to assist State LIHEAP Grantees and the District of Columbia in completing their LIHEAP Performance Data Form for FY 2020. APPRISE also will contact you, if necessary, to correct data errors and/or missing data identified in your report. The goal of the technical assistance available from our office and our contractor, APPRISE, is to assist grantees with both identifying and resolving issues in order to facilitate successful and timely submission of reports.

Grantees requiring assistance to complete their report should contact their regional LIHEAP liaison and APPRISE as soon as possible.

INQUIRIES TO:
For questions regarding accurate completion of the LIHEAP Performance Data Form, contact:
Peter Edelman
Division of Energy Assistance
Office of Community Services
Administration for Children and Families
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
330 C Street, S.W.
Washington, D.C. 20201 
(202) 401-5292 (Voice)
(202) 401-5661 (Fax)
peter.edelman@acf.hhs.gov

For questions regarding accessing the online Basecamp platform, contact your regional LIHEAP liaison.

Thank you for your attention to these matters. OCS looks forward to continuing to provide high-quality services to OCS grantees.

/s/
Lauren Christopher
Director, Division of Energy Assistance
Office of Community Services

Last Reviewed Date: