Elk in Rocky Mountain National Park
 

OFFICE ON AGING ADVISORY COUNCIL

March 9, 2006

Minutes

Held at 1501 Blue Spruce Drive

Fort Collins, Colorado  80524

 

Members Present:

Nancy Arthur

Paul Bell

Amy Farnsworth

 

Beverly Hageseth

Gerry Hinks

Elnora McCloughan

 

Janet Montera

Barbara Nuss

Ellen Pihlstrom

 

Karen Reinhardt

Mary Shultz

Lloyd Spawn

 

Earl Stevens

Stan Ulrich

Don Venneberg

 

Hal Wilson

Sharon Zamora

 

 

 

 

 

Members Absent

Steve Budner

Carolyn Funk

Olivia Larry

 

Carol Rehme

 

 

 

 

 

 

Staff Present:

Ruth Coberly

Tina Hugo

Margaret Long

 

Katy Mason

Lynette McGowan

Glen Rathgeber

 

Linda Rumney

Karen Wagner

 

 

 

 

 

Guests Present:

Marjorie McTaggart

Marcia Litchfield

 

CALL TO ORDER

Lloyd Spawn called the meeting to order.

INTRODUCTIONS

Lloyd Spawn introduced Marcia Litchfield and Marjorie McTaggart to the council.  Lloyd welcomed new member, Amy Farnsworth.

OPEN DISCUSSION/COMMUNITY INPUT

There was no open discussion or community input.

CONSIDERATION OF AGENDA

Marjorie McTaggart noted that her name was missing the Mc on the agenda.  Marjorie also requested more time to discuss the events happening at the senior center. 

CONSIDERATION OF MINUTES OF February 9, 2006                      

The minutes shall stand as presented.

CHAIR REPORT

Lloyd Spawn requested that committee chairs provide a brief summarization of their goals as part of their monthly report.  Lloyd conducted a presentation for the Human Relations Commission and an AARP Chapter meeting.  Lloyd suggested that the council welcome a liaison from the Human Relations Commission.  Earl Stevens motioned to accept a new liaison to the council, Karen Reinhardt seconded the motion.

UPDATE OF OFFICE ON AGING

Margaret Long commented that the federal budget is looking flat with possible small cuts.  Margaret noted that inflationary costs equal a decrease.  Advocacy is needed to keep current funding levels.  Margaret reported that on the state front with the passing of Referendum C, the Office on Aging is not currently looking at any funding cuts.  Margaret reported that Senator Riesberg has been working to stabilize the general fund money and possibly increase the fund from 2.5M to 3M.  This bill will go to Appropriations next Friday.  Senator Riesberg is currently showcasing some seniors during the legislature sessions on Mondays and Tuesdays.  Providers have been great by volunteering to write the stories and get these seniors down to Denver. 

 

Margaret gave a brief update on the Aging and Disabilities Resource Center (ADRC).  The new ADRC Specialist will start on March 27th.  Laura Sutherlin has been selected.   Laura was an intern for the Office on Aging last year; she also has 20 years experience as a physical therapist. 

Medicare Part D Update: 

Katy Mason reported that the Medicare Part D calls have slowed down.  Calls are continuing but at a slower rate.  Katy reported that the complexity of calls is getting harder.  The Office on Aging decided to keep one temporary worker through the end of March and the other through the end of May.  After May, the Aspen Club will take over the dual eligibles.  The Area Agency on Aging’s (AAA) throughout Colorado have taken a unanimous stand on Part D and sent an advocacy letter similar to what was sent to the Advisory Council to the Colorado legislature.  Most of the fixes need to be completed at the federal level.  Katy urged the council to continue their advocacy efforts.  Margaret Long continues to advocate for “fixes” at the state level.  The Centers for Medicare/Medicaid Services (CMS) now has staff specialists based on specific plans that handle problems for each of the individual insurance plans.  The specialists have been helpful with resolutions and the response time is better.  CMS reported to Ellen Philstrom at the Aspen Club that there are approximately 14,000 Larimer County seniors that have not signed up for a Medicare plan.  Ellen is not sure how they came up with this number but CMS is marketing to get the word out to seniors to enroll.  Ellen stated that she feels that many seniors are waiting until May to enroll and/or may have pension plans.  Katy stated that she has concern with reaching the seniors that are eligible for the extra help. 

SENIOR ADVISORY REPORTS

Fort Collins Senior Advisory Board Report

Marjorie McTaggart reported that the advisory board had an informative discussion with the Fort Collins Police Chief.  The board is keeping a good working relationship with the Traffic Department.  The Traffic Department has been working on getting the flashing lights installed at the Senior Center and shopping mall crossing.  Because of the parking problem at the Senior Center the advisory board asked the Traffic Department to put up flashing lights on Raintree Drive and adjusted the crossing time at Shields and Raintree. 

 

Marjorie reported that a citizen brought a concern to the advisory board regarding PVH’s policy for the discharge of patients who live alone.  PVH requires that a neighbor and/or friend listen to the discharge instructions before the patient can be released from the hospital.  This policy could be a violation of a patient’s privacy and is a concern. 

 

Marjorie reported on the Senior Center’s agreement with Dial a Ride and PVH to transport seniors between PVH and the Harmony Campus.  PVH has agreed to pay for the ride.  Marjorie stated that they are receiving reports that this is not being used. 

 

Marjorie reported that the Outreach Committee has 5 new members, including a liaison to Volunteers of America (VOA).

 

Marjorie reported that she also is on TRIAD and is working on the Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) issue.  Some emergency responders except only bracelets while others only except a state certified document. 

 

Marjorie thanked Margaret and the Office on Aging for supporting the Channel 4 “Life Goes On” program.  The third show is almost ready to be aired and they are looking for additional sponsors. 

 

Loveland Senior Advisory Board

Earl Stevens reported that the board invited Jan Brown to their meeting.  They discussed the City Council Boards and Commissions to determine what should be kept.  They also discussed the future of the board.  Earl reminded the council that Bridging The Gap is set for September 29th at the McKee Medical Center.  Earl announced that the Job Fair is scheduled for April 20th at the Fort Collins Senior Center.  Earl went on to report that the board decided on more computer classes for seniors.  The class will be held at Valley Thompson High School this summer.

 

Foundation on Aging

Mary Shultz reported that the Foundation is planning to offer a computer class for seniors.  Mary noted that the Foundation is continuing to cover prescription costs for seniors who are falling through the cracks in Medicare Part D.

 
Larimer
County Commissioner

Karen Wagner reported that the Board of Commissioners is promoting a Para-Transit system especially for the unincorporated areas.  The Department of Human Services has investigated a few different grants; most are capital grants to buy equipment. 

 

Karen reported that there is a Public Meeting on Saturday, March 25th at 9:00 a.m. at the State legislature to discuss accountability around Referendum C. 

COUCILMEMBER BIOGRAPHY:

Nancy Arthur gave a brief biography of herself.

COMMITTEE & STAFF REPORTS

Education Committee

Mary Shultz asked Janet Montera to report on the subcommittee that is working on Older Americans Month.  Janet reported that she and Carolyn Funk will be meeting with the editor of the Coloradoan.  Janet described their plan to profile older Americans in Larimer County doing what they do best.  Janet thanked the council for providing names to profile. 

 

Mary reported that United Way 211 is interested in doing a community calendar but does not currently have the appropriate software or personnel to handle the project.

 

Executive Committee

Lloyd Spawn reported that the committee discussed the training session for new members and the advisory council agenda.

 

Health Committee

Nancy Arthur reported that the committee discussed the dental program.  Margaret Long reported on how the Old Age Pension (OAP) Dental Program is progressing.  Nancy stated that they also discussed Medicare Part D and Senior Yellow Page distribution. 

 

Membership Committee

Elnora McCloughan reported that the committee planned the new member’s orientation.  Lloyd reminded the committee that they will need to get a list of officer candidates ready for May.

 

Nutrition Committee

Margaret Long reported that Poudre Valley Hospital indicated that they do not want to continue providing Volunteers of America (VOA) congregate meals.  VOA met with Loveland Meals-on-Wheels to discuss the possibility of their cooking the meals.  Diane is continuing to look at other possibilities. 

 

Housing Committee

Stan Ulrich reported that the committee started a telephone survey of mobile home parks in Larimer County.  Stan reported that there are 29 trailer parks in Larimer County.  The findings indicate that the average monthly rental is over $300 a month.  Stan stated that the main reason for the survey is to make a determination of space availability for seniors.  In addition, the survey will indicate potential areas of advocacy around development and pricing. 

 

Transportation Committee

There was no report. 

 

Staff Reports

Linda Rumney reported that the ombudsmen are starting to get back to normal after helping with Medicare Part D.  Linda reported on the Northern Colorado Culture Change Coalition. 

 

Lynette McGowan thanked the council for the get well card.  Lynette reported on the White House Conference on Aging outcomes.  Lynette reported on the Caregiver Initiative Workshop that was held in December.  There were 21 people from 19 agencies.  Lynette commented that the next step for her program is to take the outcomes and apply for the Rosalind Carter Caregiver Grant.  This grant proposal is for $40,000 for one year and is due at the end of the March.  Lynette reported that she is also looking at some smaller proposals that would help provide money for respite.  

 

Katy Mason reported that there were 99 seniors that applied for the Senior Tax Work Off program.  Katy had only enough money to hire 62.  Katy commented that it was very difficult to turn away the others.  Katy requested another volunteer to be on the Bridging the Gap committee which meets every other Wednesday of each month.  They will meet at McKee in March and the Chilsen Senior Center in April. 

 

ANNOUNCEMENTS

Beverly Hageseth announced that on Wednesday March 15th at 4:15 at PVH there is an educational video presentation by the League of Women Voters.  The video is on Single Payer Healthcare coverage and the guest speaker is Dr. Pearson.   Beverly is looking for volunteers to help with this program.  Dr. Pearson has agreed to videotape his speech. 

 

Lloyd Spawn asked the council to sign-up for the Speaker Bureau.   Lloyd stated that they need six more people in order to achieve the goal of eighteen.  Lloyd announced that the location of April’s meeting will be at the Harmony Library.

 

ADJOURNMENT

Earl Stevens motioned to adjourn the meeting, Janet Montera seconded the motion.

 

Background Image: Rocky Mountain National Park by Sue Burke. All rights reserved.