ELDERLY COMMISSION MEETING
REGULAR MEETING: September 24, 2007 at 11:30 am
East Windsor Town Hall
Meeting Minutes of September 24, 2007:
I. Meeting called to order at 11:35am, by Claire Badstubner, Chairman.
*Note: Meeting was held although there was no quorum. No voting permitted.
Present Members: Claire Badstubner (Chairman), Elizabeth Burns (Municipal Agent), Trevor Bray
Absent Members: Madeleine Thompson, Catherine Drouin
III. Previous Minutes:
A) Regular Meeting 2/26/07, 3/26/07 and 4/23/07
No discussion of meeting or acceptance of minutes due to lack of quorum.
IV. Members Update:
Application of potential new candidate has been submitted to BOS. Item should be on agenda for their upcoming meeting. Commission should have an update at October meeting.
V. Transportation Services to Adult Daycare:
A letter has been submitted to the Board of Selectman regarding the results of the commission’s survey about transportation services to adult daycare facilities. Ms. Burns will bring a copy of the letter to the Elderly Commission’s October meeting to file in their records.
VI. Future Projects
Discussion of a new Senior Center started with questions to Ms. Burns. Ms. Burns gave an overview of what has been submitted to the CIP - $100,000 over 5 years. Ms. Burns explained the CIP to members and that in order to be considered on the CIP, the project would fall under “health and safety”. Ms. Burns commented that the current facility would fall under this category due to the fact that it is not conducive for all spectrums of the senior population. Mr. Bray commented that the size of the current building is sometimes an issue as some events fill to maximum capacity. It was also mentioned that the current facility does not have an adequate ramp/handicap access.
Ms. Burns stated that the first step for the commission would be to gather information on other Senior Centers (in surrounding towns) and also to find out what interests the town’s seniors in regards to starting a new center (for example, a computer lab or fitness area). This information would be prepared for a presentation to the BOS.
Ms. Badstubner commented that a new center could either be a single building or part of a complex. Ms. Burns further explained that since the town owns land, the project might want to be based on a new building, on town land.
Ms. Burns estimated that the project would require approximately $3 million in funding and that the project would span 3-5 years. Ms. Burns stated that some of the preliminary costs for such a project would be for engineering/design. It was also mentioned that during the planning process it is possible that an existing town building could become available.
Mr. Bray suggested an evening forum as a way to gather information/feedback from seniors, as the previous surveys sent (regarding the transportation issue) have not been successful in gather feedback/information.
Ms. Badstubner further suggested that the commission visit the various senior housing complexes as well as the senior center and churches. The commission members agreed that seniors are more comfortable in their own “setting” to discuss issues and give feedback, as opposed to having them go to a presentation in a different location.
Ms. Burns introduced the commission to ITN (brochure handed out). ITN is a non-profit entity that provides primarily transportation services to the elderly, for a membership fee. Ms. Burns explained that ITN can organize a “community tea” for seniors in town. Ms. Burns stated that this may be a good way for the commission to gather seniors together to get information/feedback. The Elderly Commission would sponsor the “tea” at a decided location and ITN would make all arrangements in terms of invitations, food, etc. The members all agreed that such a scenario could be helpful in terms of receiving feedback from seniors, as surveys could be handed out on the spot to be completed. The “tea” would give the commission an opportunity to gather seniors
together and find out their interests in regards to a new senior center. ITN would also take the opportunity to explain their program and how seniors in town can benefit from such a transportation program/service.
Regarding ITN further:
Ms. Burns further explained what ITN does and how she has received their information. ITN provides transportation services 24 hours/day/7 days/week utilizing private cars. This service charges an annual fee to its clients and there is a small fee per mile driven. The program offers many opportunities for individuals to volunteer their time to apply towards transportation credits.
The State of CT has given five $50,000 grants to start such a program. Enfield has taken the initiative in contacting neighboring towns to have them join in on the program. Other towns (along with Enfield and East Windsor) currently agreeing to participate are: Bloomfield, East Granby, Granby, Somers, South Windsor, Suffield, Windsor and Windsor Locks (with Ellington, Vernon and Tolland coming on board as well).
Present commission members discussed the meeting time and lack of attendance. Members decided to change the time for the October meeting to 5:00pm to better accommodate members’ schedule. At the October meeting, members will vote on new time for future meetings. Town Clerk will be informed of change in meeting time.
Chairman adjourned meeting at 12:30pm.