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CENTRAL SENIOR CITIZENS ASSOCIATION, INC.,

Augusta, Maine, February 3, 1975. Mr. JOHN F. SEIBERLING, Longworth House Office Building, Washington, D.C.

DEAR CONGRESSMAN SEIBERLING: In reply to your letter of January 17, I am pleased to learn that you are planning to introduce in the 94th Congress a bill to establish a home repair project for Older Americans.

Our Association, the Central Senior Citizens Association, Inc., (an officially designated Area Aging Agency), has among other services, a "Handyman Serv. ice". We find that it has a high priority rating in the list of essential services for the elderly. We are pleased to help you in anyway possible in regard to establishing a nationwide service of this type.

The following are some of the statistics which you requested. I am submitting the figures from our Lincoln County Handyman Service.

HANDYMAN SERVICE APRIL 1, 1974 TO DECEMBER 31, 1974 1. Funded under Title III of the Older Americans Act.

2. Number of handymen employed, 3. We prefer their ages to be 55 or over. Employment is part-time @ $3.00 per hour.

3. Number of homes repaired, 40.

4. Cost of materials used are paid by recipient. We do not have figures on these costs.

5. Cost of labor per unit, average, 20 hours @ $3.00=$60.00

6. Level of repairs. These are the kind of repairs that can be done by a handyman. They do not include major repairs such as entire new roofs, sidewalls, etc. Winterization is of major importance.

Putting of banking boards.
Replacing and repairing storm windows, setting glass, puttying, etc.
Refitting ill-fitting doors.
Repairing doors, steps, and porches.
Repairing broken sections of sidewalls.
Repairing leaky roofs.
Cleaning and painting sections inside of homes.
Repairing broken floor boards inside of homes.
Construction of hand rails on steps, in bathrooms, etc.
Building of wheel-chair ramps.

The home repair service which you are proposing can result in lifting a substantial part of the tax burden from the shoulders of the American public. A small repair service to an elderly citizen's home can make the difference between that person being able to remain in his home or his having to be placed in an institution. I feel sure that when our tax weary public is made aware of the great savings to it in dollars, between a small repair service and expensive institutionalization, it will be glad to support your bill.

We, who are interested in helping the aging, are grateful to you for your efforts to assist them. I wish you success with this bill. Sincerely,

MAUD H. Burns, VISTA Volunteer, Handyman Coordinator.

STATE OF NEBRASKA,

COMMISSION ON AGING,

Lincoln, Nebr., November 13, 1974. Hon. JOHN F. SEIBERLING, Longworth IIouse Office Bldg., Washington, D.C.

DEAR CONGRESSMAN SEIBERLING: Thank you for your letter of October 29, 1974 addressed to Ronald L. Jensen, former Director of the Nebraska Commission on Aging. As his successor, I appreciate the opportunity to reply to your request for comments on H.R. 16570.

While I must congratulate your concern and foresight in the introduction of this Bill, as the head of a State Agency on Aging, I feel that I must caution its tie in with Title IX of the Older Americans Act. Presently, the theme of the entire act is toward coordinated Area Agency activity which, at least in Nebraska, has

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never materialized under Green Thumb projects to date. Therefore, not only
would I encourage you to place your proposed program under Area Agency on
Aging purse-string control, but to further endeavor to bring Title IX under such
planning control.

Thank you for this opportunity to comment and for your obvious concern.
Best wishes.
Sincerely,

JOSEPH A. GAIDA,

Erecutive Director.

STATE OF INDIANA,
COMMISSION ON THE AGING AND AGED,

Indianapolis, Ind., November 20, 1974.
Mr. JOHN F. SEIBERLING,
Member of Congress,
Longworth House Office Bldg.,
Washington, D.C.

DEAR MR. SEIBERLING: Thank you for the copy of House Bill 16570 on "Older
Americans Home Repair Assistance Act" of 1974.

You are to be commended for your concern for both the employment of older Americans and the home repair and maintenance of the homes of the low income elderly.

The effort to have persons employed in the 55- and over bracket to assist home owners over 65 years is one realistic means toward providing services for older Americans.

It is hoped your Act will be passed by Congress and money appropriated so that funds might be available; particularly for projects on energy conservation and winterization as urged by the Administration on Aging in its Information Memorandum 75–16, dated October 24, 1974. Thanks again for your interest and concern for the elderly. Sincerely,

MAURICE E. ENDWRIGHT,

Executive Director.
STATE OF MARYLAND,
MARYLAND COMMISSION ON AGING,

Baltimore, Md., November 14, 1974.
Hon. Joux F. SEMERLING,
Congress of the United States,
Longuorth House Office Building,
Washington, 'D.C.

DEAR CONGRESSMAN SEIBERLING: Thank you for your letter inviting comments on the Older Americans Home Repair Assistance Act.

In Maryland we have been very concerned about the need to do what we could with Title III funds to alleviate the housing needs of the elderly. Presently, through one of our Area Agencies, some funds are being used for home repairs for older persons. Because the need is so great, the project is addressing itself to those homes found to be in violation of housing codes.

Resources for housing repair are quite inadequate and your bill does bring hope that this can be improved. We would make the following suggestions for pour consideration: (1) add roofing as a specific item under "home repair project", (2) change "eligible homeowner" to begin at age 60 as recent information from Social Security shows a large number of elderly people becoming unemployed prior to age 65 (usually because of health problems); (3) find means to waiver licensing regulations and union rules regarding elderly working on the home repair projects, (4) many of our elderly homeowners are city residents who will generally need as much assistance as those in rural areas.

We hope to add a housing specialist to the State staff in the near future which will enable us to generate more activity in this area of service for the elderly. In the meantime, we will examine your act further and will contact you if we have any additional comments to make.

Thank you for writing to us and I extend sincere congratulations for the initiative you have taken in this important area. Sincerely yours,

HARRY F. WALKER,

Bxecutive Director. 48-087–75- -23

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We had three specific mandated studies which the Congress wanted done. We are under way, one of which has been completed and we would like to attach to this report-I think it has not been giventhe question that had risen on the use of the formula in granting funds for the State agencies.

We completed that study and have sent that in.

We are working on this question of the integration of benefits for the elderly and we also have a tremendous task in the mandated study of the impact of Federal, State, and local taxation on the elderly.

As you can imagine, that cannot be done quickly. Yet we are trying to get a start on all of these things which are important. This coming year, too, we are particularly concerned that we take a look at some of the questions of national policy dealing with, as we have expressed it, the fragile elderly, which means in general those who are over 75 years of age who have particular needs.

As we have indicated in the report beginning with our March meeting we will have sessions and discussions with experts in the field to see how we might use our resources in the most effective way.

I think that the Congress in its concern, which we share, realizes that in all of this area of activity for older people there is a need for someone to look at the broad view and not just from a departmental point of view.

I think this is the reason why the Federal Council was established and this is what we hope we can help in focusing attention on our needs, improvements.

Having just gotten under way in such a brief time we are no ready to make specific recommendations on the changing of the Old. Americans Act as we have indicated in the report, but we do ho Mr. Chairman, that our activities can be extremely helpful to ! and we know of your interest and we want to do everything of co2 that we can for this segment of our population.

If you have questions I shall be happy to answer them.

Miss Tavani who is the staff director can, I am sure, fill in * pertinent information.

[Prepared statement follows:] PREPARED STATEMENT OF BERTHA S. ADKINS, CHAIRMAN, FEDERAL COUN

THE AGING

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My name is Bertha Adkins and I am here today in my capacity as the man of the Federal Council on the Aging. I know I express the pleasur the members of the Council for the invitation to testify before the Hous Subcommittee on Education. We appreciate the opportunity to report bar legislators who were largely responsible for the creation of the Federal on the Aging.

Since we were confirmed by the Senate in June of 1974, we have a to carry out the goal set down for us by the Congress, namely, to spea the older citizens of this nation at the Federal level.

We have taken positions on a number of matters and communi views to the President, the Congress, various Federal officials and ti public. I shall outline these later in this presentation. We have comį of the three studies we are directed to carry out by the Congress.( and recommendations on revising State formulae for funding progr the Older Americans Act was recently submitted to the respective of the Senate and House Committees Having legislative responsibii. Older Americans Act as well as the Secretary of the Department Education, and Welfare and the Commissioner on Aging. Work is

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FCA Activities

GENERAL

Recommendations were made to the President and to the Secretary of Health, Education, and Welfare, and the Commissioner on Aging following a meeting of the Council on September 10–11, 1974. These recommendations concerned : setting the Intermediate Budget level of the Bureau of Labor Statistics for older retired persons (autumn 1973, $5,414 U.S. average for retired urban couples) as the standard for national income policies for older Americans; giving appropriate attention to the employment of persons 55 years of age or older in implementation of the Comprehensive Employment Training Act; funding of senior employment programs under Title IX of the Older Americans Act; assur. ing that the new Legal Services Corporation meets the needs of older persons; and maintaining the level of funding for Senior opportunities and Services programs in any reorganization of OEO.

ADMINISTRATIVE RECOMMENDATIONS TO THE SECRETARY OF HEW In response to FCA recommendations to the Secretary of HEW, positive action was taken by him in requesting Arthur Flemming, as Chairman of the Interdepartmental Working Group on Aging, to establish a Task Force on Manpower Needs in the field of Aging. Dr. Flemming is also to provide the Council with available information relative to Federal research expenditures and program activities affecting the elderly for fiscal year 1974 and proposals for fiscal year 1975.

In response to another FCA recommendation, the Secretary designated Dr, Carl Eisdorfer as an ex-officio member of the National Advisory Council on Aging to the National Institute on Aging.

PROPOSED BUDGET CUTS

The FCA expressed to the President and to Congress their deep concern about the finanical burden that would fall on the elderly as a result of proposed 1975 budget cuts, in particular the additional costs that would have to be borne by the aged in relation to Medicare, Medicaid and food stamps.

Roy Ash, Director of the Office of Management and Budget responded for the White House, acknowledging their awareness of the Council's concern. We are attaching Mr. Ash's response with which we do not necessarily agree,

Stories on the Council's position were featured in the New York Times (December 12, 1974, p. 94) and the Washington Star-News (December 17, 1974, p. 1).

WORLD ASSEMBLY ON AGING

The Council took action, in letters to the President and other administration officials, endorsing the concept of a World Assembly on Aging, possibly in conjunction with a World Year on the Aging under the auspices of the United Nations.

The State Department informed us that the U.S. delegation to the United Nations would consult informally with representatives of both industrialized and developing countries on the possibility of holding such a meeting.

HOLT-HELM8 AMENDMENTS TO LABOR-HEW APPROPRIATIONS BILL The Council expressed to Congress strong opposition to the Holt and Helms amendments to the appropriations bill, as impediments to HEW activities to improve the status of older women and minority group members.

HEARINGS

As directed by the Older Americans Act provisions regarding the Federal Council, we undertook two hearings during 1974 to "provide public forums for discussing and publicizing the problems and needs of the aging". A hearing conducted by the.Council's Committee on, Aging Research and Manpower was held on October 31st in Portland, Oregon. The date and location were chosen to coincide with the combined annual meetings of the Gerontological Society and the American Geriatrics Society. Leading gerontologists were asked to provide their assessments of research activities in the field of aging to give

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