Otsego County's senior citizens will benefit from state awards totalling $35,000 announced by Senator James L. Seward and Assemblyman Bill Magee at the seniors' annual picnic today at Glimmerglass State Park. The funds, $15,000 from the senate and $20,000 from the assembly, have purchased two new vehicles for the county to be used to transport seniors and to support the office for the aging's outreach activities, Seward said.
"The office for the aging provides important services for the senior citizens of our county," Senator James L. Seward said. "Counties face increased budget pressure to provide local services and the competition is severe for the limited available county dollars. State funding will help provide an important local service without affecting the county's budget."
Several of the county's vehicles used to transport seniors are unreliable and two are ten years old.
"There is no doubt that the office for the aging does so much to help, aid and assist our senior citizens and their families throughout Otsego County. I was pleased to work with Senator Seward to secure this funding for the purchase of a new van, which will allow the office for the aging to be able to transport more folks to their doctors' appointments, shopping and on other ventures," said Assemblyman Bill Magee.
"Otsego County and the office for the aging are extremely grateful to Senator James Seward and Assemblyman Magee for obtaining grants for the purchase of the vehicles," said Office for the Aging Director Frances Wright. "The car will be used for transportation of older county residents for medical appointments and shopping as well as staff visits to assist seniors to access services. Without their assistance we would not have been able to obtain the vehicles, and they will be great assets as we assist Otsego County seniors."
The funding was included in the 2004-2005 state budget, and is administered by the New York State Office for the Aging.