Last updated: February 27. 2014 8:42PM - 538 Views
By Keith Strange kstrange@civitasmedia.com

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DOBSON — Issues involving the elderly highlight the agenda of the next meeting of the Surry County Board of Commissioners.

The board will convene at 6 p.m. in the Commissioner’s Meeting Room of the Surry County Government Center in Dobson.

Following an open forum for public comment, Bob Cleveland, aging program planner for the Piedmont Triad Regional Council’s Area Agency on Aging, will present a recap of the 2013 activities of the Surry County Aging Service Planning Committee.

Cleveland is expected to address funding issues and how county funds are being spent on the elderly during his presentation.

According to Cleveland, the county provided $69,081 in funding last year, out of total funding of $680,211.

The majority of the funds allocated to the agency were spent on in-home aide ($304,965, or 45 percent) and nutrition services ($242,762, or 36 percent).

Cleveland also is expected to note that the county’s elderly population is increasing, while the number of people served and available funding is decreasing.

Following Cleveland’s presentation, Aging Planning Committee Chair JoAnn Ahrens will present the committee’s five-year plan.

According to Ahrens, the main job of the committee is “to be the voice of over 17,000 senior citizens of Surry County who represent 23 percent of the total population.”

Committee goals over the next five years include increasing volunteerism and civic engagement to meet the needs of the elderly, promote good caregiver practices, work to delay or prevent the elderly’s entry into publicly-funded long-term care facilities, advocate for the rights of the elderly, provide safe and healthy lifestyles and prepare the county for a burgeoning elderly population.

Following Ahren’s address, John Springthorpe, chair of the county’s airport authority, will address that state transportation improvement plan.

Keith Strange can be reached at 336-719-1929 or via Twitter @strangereporter.

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