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$150M in funding available to New Yorkers behind on heating bills

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$150M in funding available to New Yorkers behind on heating bills

NEW YORK (WWTI) — Funding is now available to help low-income families that have fallen behind on their utility bills during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The funding was made possible by the New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance and is available to households who do not qualify for the utility assistance offered by New York’s Emergency Rental Assistance Program. However, residents must be eligible for the Home Energy Assistance Program and be behind on their heating utility bills to apply.

The program has $150 million available for a one-time payment to HEAP-eligible households from now until September of 2022, or until all the funds are used. The Federal funding serves as a way to lessen the stress on families as the moratorium on utility disconnections comes to an end in December. Residents will be able to receive up to $10,000 to pay off their accumulated heating bills through the program.

According to a press release from the Governor’s Office, about 83,000 HEAP recipients had fallen behind on their utility bills as of March 2021, with households owing $1,370 on average or roughly $113 million statewide. 

Governor Kathy Hochul said the funding will benefit New York residents of all ages.

“The global health crisis has brought into focus the struggles of so many New Yorkers, including tens of thousands of households that fell drastically behind on utility bills,” Governor Hochul said. “This critical assistance will help these households pay down utility bills that accumulated at the height of the pandemic and help them avoid potential disconnection in the coming months.” 

The requirements to be eligible for the funding can be found on the Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance’s website.

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Three Hanukkah dessert recipes that skip the fryer

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Three Hanukkah dessert recipes that skip the fryer

By Melissa Clark, The New York Times

Every winter, I look forward to reveling in the fried food frenzy of latkes and jelly doughnuts called sufganiyot that is Hanukkah in my home. But, after a few grease-splattered days, I’ve had enough. Not of Hanukkah — that goes on for eight gelt-filled nights — but of frying. The question is, what else can I serve to celebrate the holiday?

This year, I plan to lean into the oil part of the story, specifically the olive oil that burned for eight days instead of just one, the miracle that the holiday commemorates. But along with using oil for frying, I’ll make some festive, holiday-worthy confections.

Olive oil is already traditional in many desserts, adding a slightly savory note to round out the sweetness. Here, I played with three classic recipes, blending olive oil into one, incorporating chocolate into another and leaving the third alone but for a tweak in the topping.

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Ravens are field-goal favorites vs. Steelers in Week 13 road trip

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Ravens are field-goal favorites vs. Steelers in Week 13 road trip

The Ravens are field-goal favorites over the Steelers ahead of their game Sunday in Pittsburgh, according to Las Vegas sportsbooks.

After a tense home win Sunday night over the Cleveland Browns, the Ravens (8-3) are favored by 3 ½ points over Pittsburgh, which is coming off its worst loss ever under longtime coach Mike Tomlin. The Bengals routed the Steelers, 41-10, in Cincinnati on Sunday, the second straight game in which Pittsburgh has allowed over 40 points.

The Steelers (5-5-1) could also be without star outside linebacker T.J. Watt, who was placed on the reserve/COVID-19 list Monday after reportedly testing positive for the coronavirus. Watt has 12 ½ sacks in nine games this season, the second most in the NFL.

According to Covers.com’s historical odds, which date to the 2006 season, the Ravens have never been favored by more than 3 ½ points in Pittsburgh under coach John Harbaugh. They were 3 ½-point favorites in 2019, when Pittsburgh started quarterback Mason Rudolph in place of the injured Ben Roethlisberger. They were also three-point favorites in 2015 and 2012, when Michael Vick and Byron Leftwich started for the injured Roethlisberger, respectively. The Ravens won all three games by a field goal.

Roethlisberger is expected to start Sunday, but he’s coming off a poor outing. He finished 24-for-41 for 263 yards, one touchdown and two interceptions Sunday in Cincinnati, and his QBR (28.3) was the second lowest of his season.

The Ravens, who lead the AFC North and have yet to play Pittsburgh this season, have fared well against division opponents recently. They’re 9-2 against the spread against the Steelers, Browns and Bengals over their past 11 meetings. Pittsburgh, meanwhile, is 1-6 against the spread in its past seven home games overall, according to CBS Sports.

The Steelers, who swept last season’s series after the Ravens took the 2019 series, lead the all-time rivalry, 30-24. Because of illness and scheduling circumstances, Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson has started just twice against Pittsburgh, winning in 2019 in Heinz Field and losing in Baltimore last year.

The over/under for Sunday’s game is 44 points.

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Misfortune follows Von Miller from Denver to Hollywood

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Misfortune follows Von Miller from Denver to Hollywood

After Von Miller left his Russian sable hat and the tears behind in Denver following his trade from the Broncos to the Los Angeles Rams, he cracked, “I went to bed 4-4 and woke up 7-1.”

Talk about a Hollywood ending for the Super Bowl 50 MVP.

He figured he had Super Bowl 56 in his sights just like he did Cam Newton all afternoon all those years ago when he kept separating the football and the Lombardi Trophy from the Carolina quarterback’s grasp.

An encore, however, seems to be slipping away from Miller’s clutches, just like so many quarterbacks of late.

L.A. has been more dystopia than utopia for Miller, even with Odell Beckham Jr. working his way out of cloudy Cleveland and teaming up with him in sunny Southern California.

The Rams haven’t won since Miller’s arrival.

The drought began with a 28-16 loss to Tennessee at home when Miller sat out with a bum ankle that also forced him to miss his final game for the Broncos. He made his nondescript Rams debut in a 31-10 loss at San Francisco a week later, and finally made his mark in L.A.’s 36-28 loss at Green Bay on Sunday.

Unfortunately, it wasn’t for a sack — he hasn’t had one of those since sharing a takedown of Ravens QB Lamar Jackson with McTelvin Agim way back on Oct. 3 — but for his late helmet-to-jaw hit on Aaron Rodgers that drew a 15-yard penalty.

Miller has just half a sack since September, when he had four sacks and won the AFC’s Defensive Player of the Month award in his return from an ankle injury that cost him all of 2020.

He has lost the last six games he has played in, and his former teammates in Denver are riding high after winning three of four without him, including a victory over Washington that he sat out, a signature victory at Dallas and a thumping of the Chargers on Sunday that tightened up the AFC West.

While the Rams (7-4) are still sitting pretty in the NFC playoff picture despite being two games behind the Cardinals in their division, the Broncos (6-5) can surge into the AFC West lead with a win Sunday night at Kansas City (7-4).

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