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Council on Aging Minutes 11/05/2008
Minutes of meeting held on November 5, 2008

Meeting opened at 10:15 a.m. by Chairman Bruce Plumley.

PRESENT: COA members:  Tom Baltazar, Harold Hewinson, Lowell Nixon, Olive Nixon, Bruce Plumley, Jack Reed, and Susan Sanders. Others: Senior Center Director: Margaret Crock, Maintenance Manager: Paul Gillis, Kitchen Manager: Don Sanders, Activities Coordinator: Linda Artruc.

ABSENT:  Outreach Worker: Deb Tierney.   

MINUTES:  Minutes of October 1, 2008: Paul Gillis requested amendment to New Business, asking that the statement “It was agreed that either Don Sanders or Paul Gills will cover events as needed” be corrected and replaced with a statement that “It was agreed that Don Sanders and Paul Gillis will each act as backup for the other.”   Motion made to accept the minutes with correction was approved.

FINANCIAL: Susan Sanders, Treasurer  
Receipts in October were: GSSSI $583.33. Expenditures in October were: Telephone $123.00, M. Crock salary $652.00, Deb Tierney wages $568.70, lawn care 151.26, trash pickup $28.99, electric $163.24, exercise classes $60.00, Tea Party $73.44, managers’ wages $560.00, kitchen supplies $72.93, paint for parking lot $101.50, Citizens Security $75.00, Tasse’s (oil burner cleaning) $162.50.   Tom Baltazar asked about grant availability and offered to look into available grants.  Paul Gillis noted that we do not have an “oil” burner, but instead heat with propane.  Financial report will be changed to correct this error.

Red Cross blood drive 1/2/09, pie baking 11/16 – Boy Scouts with Seniors, Christmas caroling with seniors 12/1 or 12/8, 6:00 – 7:30 p.m.  Discussed the use of the Senior Center and that it needs to be for intergenerational purposes for the first five years of operation.  Bruce will re-do application for use, inserting a question as to how the proposed use benefits seniors.  Paul suggested asking the families of Memorial Fund designees if they have specific use in mind and, if not, can we use the funds at our discretion.  Bruce will confer with the Town Treasurer regarding use of the Memorial Fund account at our discretion.  Jack and Margaret suggested a letter of thanks to the donor families, stating that we will use the funds for a specific purpose unless we hear otherwise from them.

SENIOR TAX ABATEMENT PROGRAM: Margaret Crock and Harold Hewinson.
Year-to-date, $1,854. has been charged to the Senior Center.
In September, 1168 contacts made, 182 seniors served, 425 attended the Senior Center, 112 attended congregate meals, and the balance includes cards & games (89), exercise (44), senior tax work off program (46), intergenerational activity (182), phone calls (75), computers (16), COA meeting (13), entertainment program (20), other meetings (23), speaker (5, AVADA), soldier cards (9), newsletter (5), flu/blood pressure clinics (104).  We also received donations of vegetables from the Nixons, clothes from C. Thompson, and craft supplies. Linda Galarneau and her assistant Kathy from GSSSI visited and told us about new food vendor from New Britain CT.    

PROGRAM COMMITTEE: Margaret Crock, Deb Tierney, Olive Nixon, Linda Artruc.
Regular programs: Monday Mah Jong will be on hiatus during the winter; Tuesday 11:00 a.m. craft class; Wednesday 10:00 a.m. exercise class; 11:15 a.m. blood pressure clinic on 4th Wednesday; Thursday 12:30-3:00 p.m. cribbage; crafts from 1:00-3:00 p.m. with Linda Artruc.  Plan to start Bingo on Mondays if no speaker is planned, or possibly on Wednesday afternoons.  Other activities include card games and scrabble.   11/17, 1:00-2:30 p.m. speakers from the Alzheimer’s Association, 11/20 at 11:30 a.m. Intergenerational Lunch at HES, 11/23 Harvest Meal sponsored by the Holland Congregational Church at HES, 11/24 speaker from Mass MedLine to help seniors with choice of prescription drug programs, 12/3 at 10:15 COA meeting, 1:00-3:00 p.m. AVADA, 12/5 at 4:00 p.m. trip to Bright Nights in Springfield, 12/17 at 11:30 a.m. Christmas celebration dinner and “Yankee Swap” at the Senior Center, 1/2/09 from 1:00-7:00 p.m. Red Cross blood drive.   Lunches are served every Monday, as well as on the 2nd and 4th Wednesdays.  We are in need of a DVD/VHS combo for the crafts room.  There has been no response yet from the Cultural Council regarding requests for entertainment at the Senior Center and theater tickets for seniors.  Have not heard yet about the Grandparents Luncheon at HES in February.

Deb submitted a written report.  There have been many applicants for both the Food Stamp and Fuel Assistance programs in October.  Butterworth funds totaling $5,900. are available, which is $900. less than last year.   Holland Congregational Church has donated $100. in printed materials to support the Alzheimer’s Outreach Program.   The Fall Festival took place on October 25th.  This was a fundraiser sponsored by Holland Congregational Church, Holland Elementary School PTO, and The Friends of the Holland Seniors, who pooled resources and manpower.  It was a fulfilling time and wonderful example of seamless cooperation.  This will become an annual event, with trophies changing hands annually in the food contest.   The Thanksgiving Harvest Meal at HES on 11/23 will have seatings at 2:00 p.m. and 4:00 p.m.  

Paul reports no major problems with the facility.  Some of the durable medical equipment has been distributed to people in need.  The heating system has been serviced and is in good working condition.  The kitchen vent system has been inspected and is working correctly.  100 tulips and 250 narcissuses were planted in October, at a cost of $.47 each.  Paul recommends a change in the wording of item #6 of the job descriptions for Maintenance Manager and Kitchen Manager.  The wording will be modified and made available to all Council members prior to the next meeting, at which time it can be voted upon.   The additional electrical outlets have not yet been installed.
Don reports that everything in the kitchen has been running well, with the exception of one side of the grill.  He was not able to keep the pilot light on.  Through a conversation with Elmer Daigle, a man named John, who was involved in the initial installation, was contacted by Elmer.  John came immediately and fixed the problem.  John also recommended we obtain some new knobs since the readings on the present ones are worn off, and that we get a temperature gauge to calibrate the temperature of the grill.  Motion made to purchase new knobs and thermometer was unanimously approved.  The concerns about the kitchen vent system have been resolved.  We also had a kitchen visit from GSSSI and they found everything to be in order.
Motion was made and all of the above reports were accepted by the Council on Aging.

Bruce reports thank-you letters to those who made our Senior Center possible have not been done.  Paul composed a new letter to be used and gave it to Bruce.  Regarding the Latch Key program, Paul suggests a letter be sent to Holland seniors asking them about sharing their talents/interests with students in the program.  Lou DiBella, Principal at HES, has sent out a survey form to parents to assess the need for this program.  Paul’s suggestion will be addressed once we get the survey results from the school.

Requests for use of the Senior Center were reviewed and approved.  In light of recent town/state/national economic cut-backs, a review of our COA budget took place, identifying areas where we need to cut back on spending and reminding everyone that expenditures cannot be made nor stipulated work hours exceeded without Council approval.  

Meeting adjourned at 12:10 p.m.

Submitted by:  Susan Sanders, Secretary  

Meeting on December 3, 2008                                                                                         
Call to Order at 10:15 a.m.
Approval of minutes of November 5, 2008
Reports, Outreach, Senior Center Director, Program,
Senior Tax Abatement, Finance, Maintenance Report,
Kitchen Report, Old Business, New Business, Correspondence

Town of Holland 27 Sturbridge Road, Holland, MA 01521
Phone: 413-245-7108 Fax: 413-245-7037
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