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Council on Aging Minutes 06/03/2009
Minutes of meeting held on June 3, 2009

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

PRESENT: COA members:  Tom Baltazar, Harold Hewinson, Lowell Nixon, Olive Nixon, Bruce Plumley, and Susan Sanders.  Others: Senior Center Director: Margaret Crock, Kitchen Manager: Don Sanders, Maintenance Manager: Paul Gillis, Activities Coordinator: Linda Artruc, Earl Johnson, and Judy Gaumond from Friends of Holland Seniors.

ABSENT:  Jack Reed and Outreach Worker Deb Tierney.
MINUTES:  Motion to accept the minutes of the May 6, 2009, meeting was seconded and approved.  

In May 1108 contacts were made and 152 seniors were served.  340 attended the Senior Center, 132 attended congregate meals, and the balance includes cards & games (95), exercise (28), senior tax work off program (16), intergenerational activity (234), phone calls (90), computers (19), COA meeting (12), garden club meeting (6), plant work (16) blood pressure clinic (15), speakers (80), AVADA (5), and senior housing and activities (19).  

SENIOR TAX ABATEMENT PROGRAM: Margaret Crock and Harold Hewinson.
As of May 31, 2009 the Senior Center has been charged $2576.00, the Town Clerk has been charged $500.00, Assessors office $268.00, Holland Elementary School $1,958.00, Executive Secretary $72.00, and Tax Office $372.00, for a total for all departments of $5,746.00.  Margaret asked, and Earl confirmed, that this year’s (2009) abatement allowance is $7,000.  We allow $500.00 per household.  Other towns allow up to $750.00.  MCOA may allow more in the future.  

PROGRAM COMMITTEE:  Regular programs:  Lunch is served every Monday as well as on the 2nd and 4th Wednesday of each month.  Monday Mah Jong at 10:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m.; Tuesday storytelling with preschoolers at 10:00 a.m. followed at 1:00 p.m. by a craft class; Wednesday 10:00 a.m. exercise class, and COA meeting on the 1st Wednesday; Thursday 12:30-3:00 p.m. cribbage, and crafts from 1:00-3:00 p.m. with Linda Artruc.  Card games, scrabble and puzzles available daily.  The next AVADA hearing clinic will be on Wednesday August 5th from 1:00 to 3:00 p.m.  A garden club led by Tom Baltazar has begun and will meet on the 2nd Monday of the month at 10:30 a.m.  On June 10th from 11:15 to 12:15 we will have a blood pressure clinic followed by lunch and a session on emergency preparedness.  On June 14th from 7:00 to 11:00 a.m. Hamilton Reservoir Assoc. will hold a pancake breakfast.  There will also be a flag retiring ceremony in the parking lot that morning.  Check the cable channel.  On June 22nd Fallon Health Care will give a presentation and on June 24th, through the Holland Cultural Council, Danielle Rasys will entertain us with song and dance.  On July 8th at 11:15 a.m. there will be a lecture on arthritis.  On July 24 from 11:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. there will be a Red Cross Blood Drive.  Volunteers are needed.  On July 25th there is an intergenerational activity from 8:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.  Sometime in July we will have a presentation of “young” pictures with an opportunity to identify who they are.   On August 12th there will be an immunization lecture (flu shorts in September).  On August 17th at 1:00 p.m. Richard Clark will entertain us as Mark Twain.  Joan Dusoe has dates set up for the following: Blood pressure screening/cold and flu information on September 19, and on October 6 from 10:00 to 12:00 we will have a flu shot clinic.  Future use of the Senior Center includes:  A bridal shower on July 25th and possibly a tea party on September 30th.  Other activities include a trip to the Stageloft Theater in August or September, and in October a meeting of the Opacum Trust from 6:30 to 9:00 p.m. about the Lost Valley of East Brimfield.  Other future meals include Mike’s pizza and our June anniversary.  Holland Elementary School requests volunteers to count and roll change from various fundraisers – just show up during school hours.  A thank you note was read from someone who used the Senior Center, praising the facility and the helpful staff.

Many people are interested in the “Mark Twain” presentation.  Presenter Richard Clark charges a $200.00.  Motion by Bruce to pay this fee from the Gift Account was unanimously approved.  Paul suggested having a line item in the budget for programs, but Bruce felt having an account to drawn from was adequate.

REPORTS:  Debbie Tierney, Outreach Worker
Deb submitted a written report for May.  The fuel assistance program has ended.  There are still some funds in the Butterworth Trust Fuel Assistance allotment.  There is a breakfast program on help for caregivers of Alzheimer’s patients on June 10th at 7:30 a.m. at Orchard Valley Assisted Living in Framingham.  Linda Artruc and I plan to attend and this is open to others who might wish to attend.  The semi-annual VOC Recognition Dinner for Senior Companions will be held at the Cavalier Restaurant in Chicopee on Tuesday, June 30th.  I think it would be appropriate and encouraging for someone from the COA or a staff member to accompany Lois to this free dinner.  GSSSI donated unused sturdy shelving which is being used in the Police Department.  I have requested 20 books for Farmers’ Market coupons which have been appropriated to the elderly who applied for fuel assistance.  The closest Market is in Brimfield on Saturday mornings from 9-1.  The newsletter will be published by Sturbridge Direct of Holland in the future.  Submissions are due no later than June 23rd.  Please find out if those who have prepared the newsletter for mailing in the past will continue to do so, or if they would prefer to have them addressed and sealed when they get them for mailing.  This question was posed at the meeting and the Senior Center members will continue to prepare the newsletter for mailing as they have in the past. Postage is necessary and a motion was made and approved to purchase stamps was seconded and approved.  Check for $105.60 will be requested (240 stamps @ $.44).

FINANCIAL:  Susan Sanders, Treasurer  
Receipts in May were: formula grant $1,550.00, GSSSI $583.33 and gifts totaling $700.00.  Expenditures in April were:  Salaries $1,953.00, trash pickup $31.50, electric $94.40, telephone $.66, printing $88.75, Eva Pittsinger $60.00, craft room sink and lumber $179.00, exterminator $165.00, petty cash $47.77, Deb Tierney-mileage and parking $62.55, kitchen stove knobs $47.99, lawn care $10.50.

The exterminator came to perform this annual task.  New knobs were installed on stove.  
Paul reports that evidence of iron bacteria has been cleared.  Eventually, when senior housing is built, it will be served by public water supply, as will the Senior Center.  Paul submitted a proposal for items needed and/or wanted for the upcoming year at a cost of $1,082.  The portion that is needed amounts to $504.00 and includes cleaning needs for fiscal year 2010.  Motion to approve is postponed.  Paul drafted a thank you letter he wishes sent to Mr. James Farley and the students at TRHS for their assistance in the spring clean up of the Senior Center.  The Secretary will attend to this.  There was much discussion about mulch and fertilizer needs as well as weed prevention procedures.  Bruce suggests using what monies we have in this fiscal year budget to accomplish what we can and to wait until fall to seed, fertilize, etc.  Earl suggests waiting to see what monies will be available in the 2010 budget.  Bruce will donate grass seed and Round-Up.  Paul again brought up the disposition of a couch which had been used in the Senior Center but was in the way.  The couch is in a private home at this time since placing it in basement storage would cause it to deteriorate due to dampness.  

Motion to accept all of the above verbal and printed reports was made and approved by the Council on Aging.


NEW BUSINESS – Chairman Bruce Plumley’s sister Kathy passed away recently.  Motion was made and approved to donate $100 in Kathy’s memory to her church, as requested by her family.

The new position of Manger of the Senior Center, approved at the last meeting, was brought up for discussion.  Two applications were received for the position.  Resumes for the applicants were distributed to Council members.  The applicants were Don Sanders and Paul Gillis, who currently hold the two positions which were combined into the new Manager position.  A lot of discussion ensued because of the choice that needed to be made.  The Secretary/Treasurer abstained due to conflict of interest.  A number of COA members abstained due to their close working relationship over the years with both candidates, and current working relationships.  It was suggested the vote be made in private in the Reading Room.  It was agreed that no indication of who voted for which candidate would be made public and no minutes would be available for public review, in order to preserve harmony in the COA.  Upon return, Bruce announced that Don Sanders would be the new manager effective July 1, 2009.
Meeting adjourned at 12.10 p.m.

Submitted by:  Susan Sanders, Secretary  

Meeting on July 1, 2009                                                                                         
Call to Order at 10:15 a.m.
Approval of minutes of June 3, 2009
Reports: Outreach, Senior Center Director, Program,
Senior Tax Abatement, Finance, Maintenance, Kitchen,
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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