Welcome to the official website of Jefferson County New York

Social Services

**ERAP Program Opens June 1st**

New York State Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP) will be accepting applications June 1. This program will provide economic relief to low and moderate-income households at risk of experiencing homelessness or housing instability, temporary rental assistance & utility arrears assistance.



**Chafee Cash Awards Portal Coming Soon!**

Are you a young person ages 18 to 27 who experienced foster care at the age of 14 or older?
If so, you may be eligible for a direct cash award.



**Regular HEAP for 2020-2021 Opens November 2, 2020 and continues until 8/31/21 or until funds are exhausted**

The 2020-2021 HEAP Cooling Component opened on Monday, May 3, 2021. Benefits will be provided on a first come, first serve basis to eligible applicants through Tuesday, August 31, 2021, or until funding allocated to this component is exhausted. 
You may qualify for a HEAP cooling benefit if your household:
• Has a member with a documented medical condition worsened by heat
• Gross monthly income meets current HEAP guidelines
• Received a regular HEAP benefit greater than $21 in the current program year or resides in government subsidized housing with heat included in your rent
• Did not receive a HEAP funded air conditioner within the past 5 years

(Please visit our Home Energy Assistance Program page listed under the
Assistance Programs tab for more information. For a HEAP application click here.)



The Department of Social Services has limited seating and waiting capacity in our lobby. Scheduled appointments are strongly recommended by calling the office at (315) 785-3000. You may reach the department via phone, fax, standard mail or email to drop off information and ask questions. Please visit the program pages in the menu to the left for current contact information.  You can also check your eligibility for economic supports at: myBenefits.ny.gov.  

**Face coverings are required for unvaccinated individuals. Please maintain social distancing whenever possible while at the agency. Thank you.**



Jefferson County Department of Social Services (DSS) is pleased to inform county residents that a free mobile device application called NYDocSubmit is available for individuals to use to submit necessary documents at any time.  This mobile application provides individuals who have applied for or are receiving DSS benefits to submit documentation to the DSS in a simple and fast way.  The mobile application is available for download on Google Play or the Apple App Store and can be used to take photos of documents and upload them to Jefferson County DSS.  During this time of restrictions, having the ability to submit necessary documentation from the comfort of home is essential to continue supporting families in Jefferson County. 


Many individuals have had their employment and income impacted by COVID-19. Anyone in receipt of SNAP whose employment has been affected, either they are currently unemployed or are experiencing a decrease in hours worked, should report these to changes to Jefferson County Department of Social Services as soon as possible as it may affect their SNAP benefit amount. A convenient way to report this is to complete and submit an online SNAP change report form found at https://www.mybenefits.ny.gov/. If you are now in receipt of unemployment, you can submit proof of this and other documentation using the free mobile application NYDocSubmit.

Teresa Gaffney
Contact Us:
Phone: (315) 785-3000
Mailing address:  
Jefferson County DSS
250 Arsenal St.
Watertown, NY 13601
Office Hours:
September – June
8:30 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Monday – Friday
July and August
8:30 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Monday - Friday