Seniors Seek Some Relief in Legislation

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(Sacramento, CA)
Thursday, October 23, 2008

Anne Mack is part of the Senior Legislature that meets every year to come up with proposals for bills.  She says there’s no doubt older Californians are struggling.

“The economy has really affected seniors very, very badly.  It’s just a disaster.”
This year the group that is modeled on the real state legislature has put forth a handful of proposals aimed at helping seniors financially. They include more tax breaks for medical expenses and a bigger property tax exemption for seniors. Their other ideas include a cost-of-living adjustment for Social Security and having dental coverage under Medi-Care.  Mack says they’re also fighting to restore state funding for the ombudsmen program.  It investigates complaints of abuse at nursing homes and was cut by the Governor. 

  “And I know that they’re telling us that things are going to look even worse next year. But there has to be a way.  You cannot cut your budget on the top of seniors and children…”

They also want to establish both state and federal alert programs to help find seniors with dementia who wander from their homes.
The senior legislature adopts ten state and four federal priorities. Historically 70-percent of their ideas have become law.