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on aging, and by insuring not only review and comment on other federally funded programs for the elderly going into their jurisdictions, but by mandating their coordination through the State and area agencies.
We urge the extension of the funding and planning cycle from a 1- to 3-year cycle. The Administration on Aging and State and area agencies should be required to prepare and publish a 3-year policy plan in coordination with the 3-year funding cycle. Annual State and area plans should be limited in focus to program objectives and budget summaries.
All Older Americans Act funds allocated to area agencies on aging for development and administration of area plans as well as social services, should have a straight 90–10 matching requirement of cash or in-kind contributions. Also, it seems fair that a State should be required to come up with at least a share of its match rather than to place the total burden for the match on the area agencies on aging.
When an area agency on aging is delegated authority to administer and monitor programs for which the State unit on aging is receiving administrative funds, the funding formula which is used to calculate the State's allowable administrative funds should also be applied for administrative funds for the area agency.
Finally, State and area agencies on aging should receive Older Americans Act resources according to a specified allocation formula weighted by general population, numbers of elderly, elderly minority group population, and the incidence of both poverty and isolation.
We would also support an amendment to the Social Security Act to raise the Federal ceiling on expenditures under title XX of that act and to earmark funding for services to the elderly commensurate at the very least with their numbers in the total population of a State. Title XX is a much more appropriate long-term service and funds source for the elderly than either general revenue sharing, which is most often needed and used to balance local government budgets for basic services, or the community development block grant, which is too restrictive in the area of social services.
Unless appropriations for the Older Americans Act are going to grow significantly, the lid on title XX expenditures must come off.
The Urban Elderly Coalition strongly advocates inclusion of a provision in title III of the Older Americans Act to permit that any unit of general purpose local government which has a population of 250,000 or more, or which contains 15 percentum of the State's population aged 60 and over, and which has established an office on aging, to be designated at its option as an area agency on aging.
of the Nation's 162 cities of more than 100,000 population58 of whom have a population of a quarter of a million and more serving over four and a half million elderly over the age of 65– only 14 have been designated area agencies on aging. It would be a serious mistake not to expand their number.
Designation of cities of at least a quarter of a million and more will allow for a significant increase in political power, public accountability, skilled staff and resource base in the Nation's area agencies on aging and will increase their potential for success.
We believe certain principles should serve as guidelines in the operation of these agencies, namely, well staffed and authoritative State and area agencies on aging should be the preferred instruments for developing and implementing a coherent national policy on aging.
This, of course, argues for and seems to us to mandate inclusion of major cities and urban areas as area agencies on aging. Development and implementation of a national policy on anything is impossible without the significant involvement of the cities and the urban areas.
The mandate should continue for State and area agencies to plan and develop comprehensive and coordinated service delivery systems as their primary mission. Area agencies should be responsible for insuring the development of critical access services. Area agencies should be encouraged to use Older Americans Act and other pooled resources to fill locally identified service priority gaps. We propose several modifications in the existing Older Americans Act.
We recommend that title III be used to provide grants for administration of State and community programs. These funds are now used primarily for services. Administrative funds for program operations are subsumed in service funds. The specific appropriation and allocation formula for administrative costs in the planning and operation of State and area agencies would greatly simplify matters, and potential abuse of Older Americans Act funds would be avoided.
Title IV and new sections of title II should encompass all programs reserved for direct administration by the administration on aging. Under title V we would like to see the additional option to that of the mortgage insurance and annual interest grants for senior centers, of direct loans to provide limited construction for centers where the cost of acquisition, alteration, or renovation of existing facilities is prohibitive or otherwise not feasible, and the reauthorization of part B, which would be the staffing of multipurpose senior centers.
Currently, there is legislation before the Congress, or soon will be, to provide home-delivered meals to the elderly and handicapped. We would recommend that when this legislation is passed, if it is passed, that it be made a separate section of title VII with a separate authorization to be administered by the Administration on Aging and distributed on a formula grant basis to the State and area agencies.
We suggest that title IX be renamed Community Service Roles for Older Americans, part A providing community service employment for all older people with emphasis on low-income elderly, the jurisdiction for this to be transferred from the Secretary of Labor to the proposed Assistant Secretary for Aging; part B, taking those programs that are now under the Domestic Volunteer Service Act of 1973 in ACTION, and transferring them to the Administration on Aging.
We propose two new titles: One for in-home services, another for special services for the elderly. In-home services would emphasize the intent of Congress that programs for older American should assist them to remain in their own homes and communities for as long as it is wise and possible. Special services for the elderly would enable the development of services that are local priorities.
Another approach to the services and programs we have proposed as new titles of the act would be to include them as separate sections under title III with specific appropriations authorized for each section.
The Urban Elderly Coalition supports the recommendations of the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights as stated in its age discrimination study for amendment of the Age Discrimination Act of 1975. We believe that a strengthened Age Discrimination Act can do much toward resolving the present failures of Federal programs to apportion a fair share of services for the elderly, so significant in title XX, in CETA, in legal services. We would look forward to implementation of the amended act in 1979.
Resolutions have been introduced by Senator Church, and Congressman Pepper and Congressman Brademas in support of the 1981 White House Conference on Aging. We support these resolutions.
We further support the proposed World Conference on Aging.
Thank you for inviting me to testify before you today on issues that we believe are critical to the national policy on aging we want to see developed. I also want to take this opportunity to thank you and your whole committee for the leadership and commitment which you have evidenced for so long to the well-being of our senior citizens.
Thank you very much.
I think we should have for the record what is the Urban Coalition, and how is it financed? Is it a purely private organization, or is it a recipient of some governmental moneys, or what?
Mr. AHRENS. We are presently a recipient of a grant from the Administration on Aging. but we were born in 1972 at a meeting called, in New York City, of cities of 100,000 or more population. We have been functioning prior to this grant out of the offices of the President, initially the Commissioner on Aging in New York City, and since last year, out of my office in Chicago.
Senator EAGLETON. Have you been a recipient of funds since 1972?
Mr. AHRENS. No, a recipient of Federal funds only since last February or March.
Senator EAGLETON. Is it contemplated that your funding will continue from the Administration on Aging?
Mr. AHRENS. We are applying for a second-year grant but whether or not it comes we are committed to insuring that the Urban Elderly Coalition will survive. Chicago is committed to that. I am sure that is true for the city of New York, the city of Los Angeles, the 12 cities that are on our board and many others we have been able to enlist in membership.
Senator EAGLETON. As I hear your testimony of the various organizations, and we are delighted to have them, you would fold into the Administration on Aging and you would elevate that to an Assistant Secretary level, you would take all the title IX away from the Labor Department and you would take away the programs on ACTION and it would all go to the Administration on Aging. Mr. AHREN8. Yes.
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Senator EAGLETON. And then you would get some new titles, targeted to the in-home services, title VIII and special services for the elderly, title X?
Mr. AHRENS. The new titles would formalize what exists, such as access services, which is information and referral broadened to insure that the person actually accesses the services that are out there.
Senator EAGLETON. How much would you appropriate, or recommend appropriating, because if we are going to authorize something we have to look forward to the day of appropriation. I happen to be on the Appropriations Committee. How much would you recommend appropriating for a new title VIII for in-home services?
Mr. AHRENS. On this we will have to get back to you. Our board did not consider that.
Senator EAGLETON. Could you give me a range, a ball park figure, a vague ball park figure? We won't hold you to it.
Mr. AHRENS. We would appropriate initially at least as much as we have for nutrition. The nutrition program, granted that it does not meet all of the needs
Senator EAGLETON. You want to appropriate in the first year somewhere between $250 million and $287 million.
Mr. AHRENS. These services are in tremendously short supply. I think most agencies that are offering any kind of home help services, chore/housekeeping services, or home-delivered meal services find waiting lists for them.
Senator EAGLETON. The next new title, "Special Services for the Elderly," would enable the development of services where there are local priorities. These might include transportation, legal services, crime prevention, casework, counseling, home repair, and senior center activities. What would be your ball-park appropriation for that new title?
Mr. AHRENS. I would propose in the neighborhood of what we propose for the in-home services. I would say about $200 million.
Senator EAGLETON. We do have a home repair program in B, administered through the States, but it is Federal money. Mr. AHRENS. All
of those programs, you see, would be under the special services title, and it would be up to local option. If you wanted to put much more into home repair, you would do it locally. If you wanted to put much more into casework, you would do it locally. We would put it all under a block grant program called special services to the elderly.
Senator EAGLETON. You are recommending $250 million for these special services in addition to what is currently being assigned for community services title III, which is $172 million at the present time?
Mr. AHRENS. This would depend on what part of title III is presently being used for access services, and I am not sure. As you know, we are recommending that title III be used only for administration and planning funds for the State and area agencies on aging.
Senator EAGLETON. How many of these categories does your funding cover?
Mr. AHRENS. How much does the funding for
Senator EAGLETON. How much is it and which account does it originate from?
Mr. AHRENS. We are funded by a title III model project grant, and I think the coalition office is receiving
Senator EAGLETON. Model projects?
Senator EAGLETON. How much would you recommend we increase the appropriation for model projects?
Mr. AHRENS. For that, again, we did not have a figure. The title III model projects, along with titles IV (A), (B), and (C), were the ones that we propose be directly administered by the Administration on Aging, either under title IV or as sections under a title II. You have to add to costs a factor for inflation and a factor for the additional elderly that we are achieving each day. I would suggest the coalition go back and start refining some of this and supply figures to the committee.
I am a little more confident on the other titles because I know what we are facing in our communities when funds are running out. If the city of Chicago, for example, did not put an additional $2 million into nutrition, I would have longer lines than I presently do at our sites.
Senator EAGLETON. At the present time, if you add up all of chart No. 1 and add in all of the contracts with these national associations, the total for OAA is now 696 and the budget request will be 771, and you talked in terms of 250 million in nutrition, and what was the other 250 million ?
Mr. AHRENS. In-home services.
Senator EAGLETON. So there would be another 500 million, and you would want some increases in some of these others.
Mr. AHRENS. Correct.
Senator EAGLETON. Then, if you tie in ACTION, which is not really that huge-it is $62 million
Mr. AHRENS. We started in the field of aging from so very little that every increase seems tremendously great, but I can assure you that no sooner are these services fielded, then they are absorbed completely in the community, and we do have the comfort of the new GAO study which tells us that until a person is really very badly impaired these seem to be cost-effective services. I think we can make a very strong argument for this much.
Senator EAGLETON. Do you think we can do much nationwide to repair the homes of America's senior citizens?
Mr. AHRENS. Indeed we can. This is going to have an effect on energy expenditures.
Senator EAGLETON. Do you think we can do it for $6 million ?
Senator EAGLETON. Give me a ball-park guess to winterize the homes of poor senior citizens in Chicago alone. What do you think