Tuesday, February 26, 2013

OFPD Creates new Senior Advisory Council

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                            Ray Hanania
Tuesday Feb. 26, 2013                                                                    rayhanania@comcast.net

OFPD Creates new Senior Advisory Council

OFPD –Orland Fire Protection District Chief Ken Brucki will propose the creation of a new Senior Advisory Council that will attract broader representative and avoid political partisanship.

Brucki said a senior council that focuses on two goals of educating seniors and the public and District services, as well as providing a structure for senior involvement will fill a void created when the former council was disbanded.

The prior council became mired in politics and many of its members resigned.

“Seniors are an important part of our community and important recipients of services and it is important that they have an organization that can provide them with information and support,” Brucki said.

“One of our most important functions as a Fire District is not only to respond to fire emergencies, but to also respond to emergency health needs. Our seniors, who are most important in our community, face many of these health problems and we want to ensure we are doing everything we can to address their needs.”

OFPD Board President Jim Hickey said the district has been without an effective senior advisory council for far too long.

“Unfortunately, we know that politics can get in the way of many things but I believe our new Fire Chief, Ken Brucki, and this new structure will result in a council that focuses on serving the needs of our senior community,” Hickey said.

“I want to thank Brucki and also Rosemaria Genova who is our communications liaison with the new senior group for their hard work in structuring this new council.”

Brucki said that the new council will seek volunteers to fill 12 seats on the council’s board. The council will look for two seniors from each of the district’s six fire station areas.

Brucki said he will present the council proposal and new by-laws to the OFPD Board at its regular board meeting on Tuesday, Feb. 26.

The proposal was developed by Senior Advisory Council coordinators including Fire Prevention Supervisor Mike Ercoli, consultant Rosemaria Genova, Acting SAC Secretary Diana Husband, OFPD Trustee Marty McGill and SAC members Joe Gleiter, and Mane Pritza. The group have proposed a reorganization and created new By-Laws, Policies and Procedures with other supporting documents.

The coordinating committee identified several areas that the Senior Advisory Council can address, including:
  • ·         Studying of issues
  • ·         Performing independent research
  • ·         Participate in district activities
  • ·         Educate seniors about health and safety issues recommended by staff and district Analyzing the impact of policies on the senior population within the district, and
  • ·         Make recommendations to the Board of Trustees based on thoughtful and unbiased discussions from a senior perspective.
  • ·         Informing seniors about our residential Knox Box (key box) Program
  • ·         Educating seniors about the Community Care Program
  • ·         Helping the bureau obtain the names and phone numbers of condo association board members in some of the senior complexes
  • ·         Participating in our annual Open House scheduled this year for October 5, 2013, and
  • ·         Assisting OFPD staff at public events such as the Taste of Orland.