The Magdalena Board of Trustees voted Monday night to proceed with a plan for the village to take over the operation of the senior center on Tenth Street.
The proposition was presented at the Village Board meeting by Neil Segotta, Director of the Non-Metro Area Agency on Aging, who told the trustees his agency is reaching out to the communities of each of the county’s senior sites.
“We’re asking them if they would be interested in operating their senior centers,” Segotta said. “The mayor has expressed an interest in seeing the center continue here.”
Segotta said the cost of running the Magdalena senior center would be in the neighborhood of $115,000.
“We prepared a quick ‘down-and-dirty’ budget for operations, based on one year, and came up with a budget of $99,670 a year,” he said. “We were off a little on salary, so maybe add $15-16,000 to that, so probably it will end up being around $115,000 a year.”
He said the Non-Metro Area Agency on Aging is prepared to assist the village should it take over the center.
“We can secure state and federal funding for the operation,” Segotta said. “As I understand it, currently, the village contributes $5,000 for the operation of the site.”
Talks will continue to sort out the details, he said.
In the interim, the agency is dealing with concerns about the seniors getting their meals.
“We have contracted with a vendor that provides ready-made meals in a box,” he said. “They don’t have to be refrigerated, can be eaten out of the box or heated up.”
Segotta said the meals had been approved according to guidelines in the Older Americans Act.
“These are drop-shipped to individual’s homes, but some are ending up at the post office due to addressing issues,” he said. “For the congregate seniors, those that can get out and get their meals, we hope this is a temporary situation.”
The meal boxes include 20 meals with a variety of sealed entrees and include an assortment of crackers and fruit snacks.
“In the interim, if we need to, there may be a vendor here in town with whom we can do a voucher service. That would be for those congregate consumers where they could go get a meal from that vendor,” Segotta said. “I think it’s very possible that if you decide to take on the site, we can have you up and running by the first of April.”
Mayor Richard Rumpf said he believed the plan, at this point, looks achievable.
“Right now, the main concern is to keep the senior center open. I’m very optimistic that volunteers will step up and help in the interim to make all this happen,” Rumpf said. “Besides the basic operation, what I’m looking for is a lot more money for food. There are things to work out yet.”
In other business, the Board approved a request for funding the planning and design stage for improving Tenth Street between Spruce and Highway 107 at a cost of $340,000.
“If we receive these funds, the project would start within three months, and the design is anticipated to be completed within 18 months,” Rumpf stated. “The town is currently under a Professional Services Agreement with Bohannan Huston, Inc. specific to the project. The entire extent of the project is within the locally owned right-of-way.”
The entire Tenth Street project is estimated to run $3.6 million.
“This is part of the documentation the Department of Transportation requires,” Rumpf said. “Deadlines are coming up for funding.”
The mayor also signed a proclamation declaring May as Motorcycle Awareness Month in conjunction with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.