Commission members: Beth Wagner, Chairman, Ingrid Heller, Lea Mintz, Sam Crocker, Rosalind Kopfstein, Janet Metzger, Hilda Rhodes
Others present: Gail Schiron, Marie Sibilio, Ruth Moran
Mrs. Wagner called the December 2, 2015 meeting to order at 9:03 am in the Redding Community Center
APPROVAL OF MINUTES
Motion: move that the minutes of the meeting of November 4, 2015 be accepted as corrected. Metzger, Mintz. Approved. Unanimous.
Correction: page 2, top, the second report is the Senior Center Program Report
Mrs. Wagner received an email from a participant in the exercise program. The Individual suggested a discount for those participants who sign up for classes for the month, but occasionally add a second class in the week. She suggested a reduction from the drop-in fee of $7.00 to $5.00, and to call it a “frequent exerciser discount”. The group discussed the suggestion and agreed to a trial period in December, January & February, with an evaluation following the trial.
REPORT FROM DIRECTOR OF HUMAN SERVICES
Mrs. Schiron reported the following:
- Van: The trial Friday Van Service was not utilized, there were no trips. For November, there were 99 trips, and 1,385 miles.
- Civic Day: Mrs. Schiron had two 7th grade students shadowing her for the day.
- Budget: the Board of Selectmen budget workshop is scheduled for January 8. The Commission will be able to view the proposed budget at the next meeting, January 6, just prior to the workshop. Mrs. Schiron is proposing that funds be allocated to new computer equipment for the Computer Lab. This would be a joint effort with Park & Rec and the Boys & Girls Club. The current computers are old and not capable of handling some of the new programs. In addition, a printer is needed for the lab.
- Senior housing: Mrs. Schiron spoke of the lack of senior housing in Redding and the long wait lists for senior housing in surrounding areas.
- Redding Elementary School students made donations of canned goods and a gift certificate for Thanksgiving.
- John Read Middle School Student Council sponsored a food drive, delivered the food to the Center and stocked the shelves. These students also checked all products for expiration dates.
- Meadow Ridge also had a food drive and donated $1,700 to Redding Shares the Warmth. Mrs. Mintz added that an additional car load of food is ready to be delivered. She added that the donations have come from both the residents and the employees. Meadow Ridge will continue to collect food through December and plan to make this an annual event.
- Redding Police conducted a food drive, “Stuff a cruiser” at the Newtown Y in conjunction with the Newtown police. The collection was shared between the two towns. Chief Fuchs’ son delivered and stocked the pantry.
SENIOR CENTER COORDINATOR REPORT
Marie Sibilio reported on class participation in programs, paid and free programs. Two drop down projection screens have been purchased for use at presentations.
SENIOR CENTER PROGRAM REPORT
Ruth Moran reported the second presentation on Opera is scheduled as part of the cultural programs. A presentation by Charley Couch on Redding history is planned for January. The Book Discussion participation is growing.
The next Lunch & Learn is planned for January 4 and will include information on home health care. Commission members felt that a variety of resources should be invited to make presentations. In addition, copies of the Directory of Services for Seniors and their Families should be available. Currently, a copy is available on the Town’s webpage, but Mrs. Wagner will check on getting a supply of the booklet printed.
Upcoming event: The Holiday Lunch, co-sponsored with the National Charity Mother & Daughter group, is planned for December 9, 2015. The cost is $5.00 per person and advance registration is required.
Choral and orchestra students from John Read Middle School will provide the entertainment.
Mrs. Metzger reported that she and Mrs. Kopfstein are collecting data on availability of transportation options in the area. She reported that taxi & Uber service is available in Redding, an example of cost for a trip from center of Redding to the Danbury Hospital area for a taxi is $41 plus tip, Uber is $23 plus tip, and Mr. French is $40/hour. She is checking further on the FISH program in Ridgefield and service in Easton. The current van is owned by the Town of Redding, and a state grant for $12,000 subsidizes the salary of the driver. There will be further information at the next meeting.
DISCUSSION AND APPROVAL 2016 MEETING SCHEDULE
The dates for the meetings in 2016 were reviewed. The meetings will be the first Wednesday of each month with two exceptions. The March meeting will be on March 9, and there is no meeting during the month of August.
Motion: move that the Commission on Aging accept the 2016 schedule of meeting dates as presented. Mintz, Metzger. Approved. Unanimous.
January 6, 2016, 9 a.m. in the Senior Center.
The Chair adjourned the meeting at 10:15 a.m.
Submitted by Mary Maday, Recording Secretary