At its meeting last Monday, officials unanimously voted to continue funding the township’s senior program from the township’s community projects fund.
Last year, the board allocated up to $15,000 in funding towards activities for township seniors, which included partial fee reimbursement to Addison Township residents wishing to join the Older Person’s Commission (OPC) located in Rochester.
Addison’s senior program has also supported senior activities within Addison Township’s existing community center, located at the township hall, through the addition of a part-time senior coordinator position and through supporting funding of up to $100 a month from the township’s general fund budget.
While officials voted last August that the program and part-time senior coordinator position would be considered temporary for the first year, recent re-evaluation by the board found the program to be well-received.
Last year, the township reimbursed 47 residents, according to Treasurer Lori Fisher, spending $4,700 of its $5,000 fee-reimbursement limit.
Due to the success of the program, Supervisor Bruce Pearson said the township will be allotting even more money towards reimbursements. Officials have set aside up to $8,000 towards OPC-fee reimbursements in the 2017-18 fiscal year and will refund up to 50 percent of the annual OPC fee per person to Addison Township residents, ages 65 and up.
The OPC is a nonprofit organization that provides a wide array of personal enrichment, fitness, aquatic, social and travel offerings to people over 50-years-old.
While the OPC does not recognize Addison Township as part of its network, it will allow residents of Addison Township to pay an annual non-member fee of $175 per person or $250 per couple to join.
“The program was a huge success. If we raise (the township’s reimbursement total) up to $8,000… we can extend it out to even more people. I think we’re going to have a lot more people (interested this year) now that they’ve heard how good it is down at OPC,” said Pearson.
The board also unanimously approved a raise for part-time Senior Coordinator Marie May to the township’s part-time, first-year pay rate of $12.97 per hour, an increase of $1.95, for up to 15 hours of work per week.
As a part-time employee, May will not receive benefits.
“Marie May has done an excellent job,” said Pearson. “The (community center) is alive. We’ve had lots of people coming (into the community center). There are activities all the time. She’s really done an excellent job and I’ve even been going in there, as a senior, to see some of the classes (they offer) there… It’s a great thing that our facility is now being used… She’s definitely due a raise and the program is a resounding success.”
The township will continue to put $100 towards the program every month until the program’s account balance reaches $1,000.
The $100 of support will cover basic supplies for crafts, games and activities for seniors. The senior program’s account currently holds a balance of approximately $380, according to Fisher.
To learn more about the township’s senior program, or to view the senior schedule, contact May at (248) 628-3388 or visit www.twp.addison.mi.us and click “senior calendar.”
The community room/senior center is open Monday through Thursday from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Friday from 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.