Methodology and Sources Used to Develop LIHEAP Income Eligible Population Estimates

The LIHEAP income eligible population was estimated using survey data from the U.S. Census Bureau and two definitions of income eligibility: 1) the federal maximum LIHEAP income eligibility guidelines, and 2) state-specific LIHEAP income eligibility guidelines implemented by grantees.

The federal maximum LIHEAP income eligibility guidelines are the greater of 150 percent of Poverty Guidelines or 60 percent of State Median Income estimates, depending on household size, as published by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). State-specific LIHEAP income eligibility guidelines vary and can range from 110 percent of HHS poverty guidelines to the federal maximum LIHEAP income eligibility guidelines. Households determined to be income eligible may not be program eligible because grantees might implement additional program eligibility requirements. Click here for HHS Poverty Guidelines and here for State Median Income estimates used by the LIHEAP program in FY 2015.

Survey data used to estimate the LIHEAP income eligible population represent the most recent data available from the U.S. Census Bureau at the time the LIHEAP income eligible population estimates were generated. Specific sources used were those recommended by the U.S. Census Bureau for analysis of state-level subgroup populations:

  • FY 2001: Three-year average of the 1999, 2000, and 2001 Current Population Survey (CPS) Annual Social and Economic Supplement (ASEC)
  • FY 2002: Three-year average of the 2000, 2001, and 2002 CPS ASEC
  • FY 2003: Three-year average of the 2001, 2002, and 2003 CPS ASEC
  • FY 2004: Three-year average of the 2003, 2004, and 2005 CPS ASEC
  • FY 2005: Three-year average of the 2004, 2005, and 2006 CPS ASEC
  • FY 2006: Two-year average of the 2005 and 2006 American Community Survey (ACS)
  • FY 2007: Three-year average of the 2005, 2006, and 2007 ACS
  • FY 2008: Three-year average of the 2005, 2006, and 2007 ACS
  • FY 2009: Three-year (2007-2009) ACS
  • FY 2010: Three-year (2008-2010) ACS
  • FY 2011: Three-year (2009-2011) ACS
  • FY 2012: Three-year (2009-2011) ACS
  • FY 2013: Three-year (2010-2012) ACS
  • FY 2014: Three-year (2011-2013) ACS
  • FY 2015: Three-year average of the 2012, 2013, and 2014 ACS*
  • FY 2016: Three-year average of the 2013, 2014, and 2015 ACS*

*The U.S. Census Bureau discontinued publishing a three-year ACS file beginning with the 2014 ACS.

Note: LIHEAP income eligible population estimates of households with disabled members for FY 2009 use the FY 2010 source (2008-2010 ACS) because these data were unavailable using the FY 2009 source (2007-2009 ACS) due to a change in definitions by the U.S. Census Bureau.