General Assistance

Durham General Assistance Administrator

Kathy Tombarelli

Contact: (207) 353-2561, ext. 10

General Assistance Application

After hours call the Sheriff's Office: 207-784-7361 Extension 8

General Assistance Hotline: 1-800-442-6003

Additional Resources

The General Assistance program provides Durham residents with assistance for basic needs such as rent, food, non-food, medication, fuel, utilities and other essential services. All assistance is granted in voucher form and no cash assistance is granted.

What should I bring to the interview?


Applicants must provide proof of identification for themselves and all household members (i.e. driver’s license, birth certificate, social security card, etc.). Proof of all household income must also be provided. Income and financial resources are not limited to net wages from jobs. Additional income sources include:

  • Cash on hand
  • Income tax refunds
  • Unemployment benefits
  • Child support benefits
  • TANF benefits
  • Social Security Benefits
  • SSI / SSDI disability benefits
  • Checking / savings
  • Veteran’s pensions
  • Rental income
  • Loans
  • Worker’s compensation
  • Savings bonds
  • Trust fund annuities
  • Life insurance policies
  • Retirement accounts
  • School loans
  • Financial resources
  • Car / recreational vehicles
  • Real estate holdings
With the exception of first-time applicants, anyone applying for General Assistance must document their use of income. Current receipts showing how income has been spent are required. Only receipts for basic necessities are considered allowed expenses, which include but are not limited to: food, rent, utilities, oil, medication and work-related expenses. If payment of a utility bill is requested, the applicant must provide the entire bill or disconnect notice. Bills are only paid if they are in the applicant’s name. Individuals may be able to receive General Assistance while receiving other forms of public assistance, such as federal food stamps, SSI and TANF. First-time applications may take up to 45 minutes. It is recommended that you apply for assistance during the morning hours.

What is not covered?

Items not considered basic necessities:
  • Phone bill
  • Cable television
  • Mail orders
  • Vehicle payments
  • Credit card debts
  • Furniture
  • Loan payments
  • Cigarettes
  • Alcohol
  • Vacation costs
  • Pet care costs
  • Legal fees
  • Late fees
  • Key deposits

Staff Contacts

Name Phone
Kathy Tombarelli 207-353-2561, ext. 10
Pamela Cloutier 207-353-2561, ext. 12