It's that time of year again! Break out the snowboots, puffy down jacket, and shovels, as we get ready to head into winter. Obviously, we expect snow each year in Buffalo, but how much is always the wildcard. Sometimes we have just a few snow storms with moderate amounts of snow. Other times we have Nor'Easters, polar vortexes, and blizzards that dump blankets of snow over the city and Western New York.

The Farmer's Almanac predicts that some of the lower lakes region, which includes Buffalo, will have above average snowfall,

Snowfall will be near normal in most areas, although a few places south of the Lakes will have much-above-normal snowfall. The snowiest periods will be in late November, mid- and late December, early and mid- to late January, early to mid-February, and mid-March.

 

11 Highest Snowfalls on Record in November & December in Buffalo

Data provided by the National Weather Service

People in WNY Will Pay Way More For Their Heating Bills This Winter

National Fuel issued an alert to its customers in Western New York,

Market prices for natural gas supplies have increased significantly from the historic lows experienced in the winters of 2019-20 and 2020-21. New York Mercantile Exchange (NYMEX) natural gas pricing for deliveries this upcoming winter recently topped $6 per MMBtu, more than doubling last winter when pricing averaged under $3 per MMBtu. This rise – driven by several economic factors, including global demand for domestically produced liquefied natural gas, disruptions in domestic production, and lower-than-average national storage inventory levels – has caused an increase in the cost of natural gas purchased and placed in storage by the Utility to meet customer heating needs for the upcoming winter.

National Fuel has several programs that help you offset this increase in your bill:

- The Neighbor For Neighbor Heat - Customers ages 55 years or older, the disabled, people currently receiving unemployment benefits, or are military veterans are eligible for grants of up to $500

- Deferred Payment Agreement - Customers can set up a payment plan for their bill

- Special Protections - If a person in a customers household is 62-years-old or older, 18-years-old or younger, or are blind or disabled, there are certain protections from heat disconnection available

- NYS Emergency Rental Assistance Program - This program offers customers funds towards utilities

You can speak to someone about options by calling National Fuel's customer service line from 7 am to 6 pm at 1-800-365-3234.

Governor Kathy Hochul announced that $373 million in home heating aid is available for residents who meet certain income requirements. You can submit your application for the Home Energy Assistance Program through the New York Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance. The HEAP program is on a first-come, first-served basis, so it's important to get your application in now. You can find your local office here. You can also visit the Governor's website for more info.

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