Queens, NY – Senator Michael Gianaris was proud to announce the restoration of state funds to keep senior centers open. The restoration of these funds allows for senior centers originally slated to close to remain open.
Senator Gianaris said, “Our seniors are important members of the community and have worked hard throughout their lives to ensure a pleasant and comfortable lifestyle later in life. They deserve to spend their days respectfully and in a place that they can enjoy.”
Previously, the New York City Department of Aging was facing the elimination of $25 million in Title XX funding which Mayor Michael Bloomberg said would result in the closure of 105 senior centers throughout New York City, 19 of which are located in Queens. In Senator Gianaris’ western Queens district, three centers were slated for closure: Steinway Senior Center, Queensbridge-Riis Senior Center and Ravenswood Senior Center. However, with the Senator’s help in restoring Title XX discretionary funding, these centers can be maintained and their doors kept open.
Title XX funds are allocated to the New York State Office of Children and Family Services. These funds include mandated services, being Adult Protective Services and Domestic Violence programs, and discretionary services, which do not require state funding. It is left to the discretion of the state as to whether or not money is allocated to those services. Senior centers are a discretionary service and do not require state dollars.
Senator Gianaris said, “I am happy I was able to help the senior members of my community, as well as seniors across New York City and State.”