The St. Joseph County Commission on Aging wishes to remind residents that a survey geared toward the population in the northern region of the county has gone live.
As a way to gauge feedback from residents 55 years of age and older, the agency has produced 20,000 copies of the survey. The questionnaires may be found in government buildings, libraries, the COA headquarters in Three Rivers, restaurants and this past Saturday’s Three Rivers Commercial-News.
COA executive director Lynn Coursey said the agency’s level of services will be evaluated and taken into account as a result of the surveys. The agency has already completed a broad survey of its residents in the southern tier of the county.
Deadline for the current survey is Jan. 11.
The St. Joseph County Board of Commissioners has agreed to work with an Ohio-based firm to prepare a study of potential locations for a new senior center.
As a result of last week’s vote by commissioners, Lifespan Design Studio will evaluate three potential locations for a new Sturgis senior center.
The $11,000 approved for the undertaking will provide commissioners opinions from a company with experience and credibility in such tasks, county officials said.
Options under consideration are a new facility adjacent to the Doyle Community Center on the east side of town, partial modification of the Sturges-Young Auditorium or refurbishing a former grocery store.
A report on Lifespan’s findings will be yielded later this year either to county administrator Pat Yoder or the five-member commission itself.
The Community Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services Board of St. Joseph County has issued a notice regarding its annual public hearing next month.
Though the public is invited to attend any monthly meeting, the September meeting is typically when clients and the public attend to provide feedback or raise issues regarding services and all other relevant matters pertaining to the Centreville-based agency.
The meeting location is at a different site and not at the Centreville office. The St. Joseph County Commission on Aging Community Room in Three Rivers will be the venue for the public hearing. It will start at 5 p.m. Sept. 23 and will also include a budget proposal for the 2013-14 fiscal year.
A consultant to review possible locations for a senior center in the Sturgis area is being considered by the St. Joseph County Board of Commissioners.
Though no action on the matter was taken during Tuesday’s meeting, commissioners during last week’s executive committee meeting heard from Lynn Coursey, Commission on Aging director. She said senior-center development is a niche market and stressed the importance of utilizing a site consultant familiar with senior needs.
Coursey said working with local architects and builders also is a strong attribute when considering a consultant.
At least three different sites within Sturgis are on the table as potential locations.
Commissioner Rick Shaffer said the matter should be deferred to the county’s building authority, whose members could discuss the issue and offer a recommendation to the board.
Members of the St. Joseph County Commission on Aging have agreed to urge the county’s board of commissioners to move forward with plans for a proposed senior center in Sturgis.
During their meeting last week, COA board members discussed the proposed Sturgis location and agreed it is needed as a replacement for the current facility on North Jefferson Street.
County Commissioner Allen Balog, who serves as the county liaison to the COA board, indicated he would report the request to his peers.
The county board doesn’t meet again until Aug. 6
Margaret Shultz has been elected as chairperson of the St. Joseph County Commission on Aging (COA) Board of Directors.
Shultz, former Community Resources Coordinator for the Department of Human Services (DHS) in St. Joseph and Cass counties, retired from that position last July after 38 years with DHS. She is now serving in a part-time capacity as the Volunteer Services Specialist for the St. Joseph County United Way and has been vice-chairperson of the COA Board in recent months. She succeeds Jean Skalski, another DHS retiree and veteran COA Board member who chose not to seek appointment to another term.
Other officers elected during the COA Board’s June meeting Wednesday (June 19) are:
Jon Withers, vice-chair
Charles Willer, treasurer
Deb Leyes, secretary.
The meeting also brought recognition of Skalski and two other longtime COA Board members who are stepping down after many years of service – Beverly Burnham and Lillian Carter. Earlier in the meeting, correspondence was noted reporting action by the St. Joseph County Board of Commissioners to reappoint three persons to the COA Board – Allen Balog and Barbara Fisher for two years, and Deb Leyes for one year.