Dutchess County Office for the Aging’s AGING NEWS For the week of January 23rd

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Dutchess County Office for the Aging’s

AGING NEWS

For the week of January 23rd

MEDICARE SAVINGS PROGRAM ENROLLMENT CLINICS

If you’re covered by Medicare, there’s a new eligibility change that could mean considerable savings for you.

Starting this year, eligibility for the Medicare Savings Program (MSP) in New York State expanded to single individuals with Medicare who have a gross income up to $2,107 per month and couples with monthly gross incomes up to $2,839. New York State does NOT look at your assets for this program.

In New York State, MSP helps older adults and people with disabilities living on low incomes by paying their Medicare Part B premiums ($164.90 each month) and enrolling them in Extra Help, the federal prescription drug subsidy program that the Social Security Administration estimates is worth about $5,100 per year. This program lowers prescription costs and gets rid of the deductible and the “donut hole”, or gap coverage. The financial assistance can be a lifeline, allowing enrollees to maintain their Medicare coverage, access needed care, and afford other necessities, like food and rent.

If this is the first time you’re learning of this, you can find out more about your potential savings. The Office for the Aging is hosting two Medicare Savings Program Enrollment Clinics for Dutchess County resident older adults in early February. Please call ahead to reserve a time to meet with a trained counselor.

  • Friday, February 3rd from 10 am to 1 pm at Sun River Health, 3360 NY 343 (East Main St.) in Amenia, about 0.3 miles east of the light in the middle of Amenia. To reserve your spot at this event, call 845-206-7526 (Ed) or 845-475-4159 (Mitzi). Masks are required at Sun River Health.
  • Wednesday, February 8th from 10 am to 2 pm at the Office for the Aging, 114 Delafield St. in Poughkeepsie. To reserve a spot at this event, call OFA during business hours at 845-486-2555.

Both events are subject to cancellation or postponement due to weather and/or community infection prevention measures.

Be sure to bring the following information with you to your appointment:

  • Proof of income;
  • Your Medicare card;
  • If you pay for dental insurance or Medicare Supplement, bring a bill;
  • Proof of address, like a current utility bill.

For older adults who are homebound or whose schedules conflict with MSP enrollment clinics, call OFA during business hours at 845-486-2555 and we’ll connect you with the resources you need.

NEW OFA GROUP PRESENTATIONS AVAILABLE

We’re happy to see more older adult and caregiver groups resume in-person meetings in 2023, and the Office for the Aging has two new Outreach presentations available for those groups. One presentation is “Exercise as You Age,” aimed at encouraging physical activity among older adults, whether solo or as part of an organized exercise program such as those offered by OFA. The other is “Aging in Your Home,” a discussion of what older adults can do to ensure their home environment is as conducive to healthy aging as possible, even if their budget for home improvements is limited.

For more information on all OFA group presentations, call 845-486-2555 or email bjones@dutchessny.gov. The February and March calendars are filling up quickly!

 

Golden Living is prepared by the Dutchess County Office for the Aging, 114 Delafield St., Poughkeepsie, New York 12601, telephone 845-486-2555, email: ofa@dutchessny.gov website: www.dutchessny.gov/aging

STILL SPACE FOR NEW “FRIENDLY CALLS” VOLUNTEERS

The response thus far to our request for OFA “Friendly Calls” program volunteers has been fantastic – thanks!

If you’re just reading about the program for the first time, here’s the quick version of how it works:

Volunteers (age 18+ welcome) speak once a week for 20-25 minutes with a pre-screened older adult participant in the program, with the goal being to re-establish social connections for isolated older adults.

We’re hosting orientations for new Friendly Calls volunteers during the next two weeks at OFA headquarters in Poughkeepsie. More will be scheduled in February and March as needed.

Contact OFA Outreach Coordinator Brian Jones at bjones@dutchessny.gov for more information.

Senior Park Prints Art Series – 2 SESSIONS LEFT

Older adults interested in learning more about creating their own art can take part in the “Senior Park Prints Arts Series” in conjunction with Dutchess County Parks. It’s been taking place at OFA Friendship Centers around the county, and two more sessions are left.

Assistant Park Naturalist Jess Steinbach is taking her artistry on the road, and will be teaching on how to make nature art with acrylic. These are free classes, and all supplies will be provided. Limited availability. Call OFA at 845-486-2555 to reserve your space. Choose one:

• Thurs., February 2nd – Northeast/Millerton Library Annex, 28 Century Blvd., Millerton

• Thurs., February 16th – East Fishkill Community Center, 890 Route 82, Hopewell Jct.

Each event takes place 2:30-3:45 pm. Please register in advance; walk-ins cannot be accepted.

For a look at the first Senior Park Prints event that happened this past week at the OFA Friendship Center in Poughkeepsie, visit this Facebook link from Dutchess County Parks.

USE “211” TO ARRANGE AARP/TAX-AIDE SERVICES

Since 1968, AARP Foundation Tax-Aide program has helped over 50 million low-to-moderate income taxpayers. As an intricate part of the Coalition Tax-Aide takes the lead in training volunteers and managing over 20 tax preparation sites in Dutchess, Orange, and Putnam Counties. More information here.

PREPARATION PROCESS (Service is provided by appointment only.)

Appointments are made by calling United Way Help Line 211 or 1-800-899-1479. Appointments can be made from 9 am to 2 pm Monday through Friday. If you do experience a wait time, we encourage you to use the option of leaving your name and phone number for a callback.

Important: Appointments cannot be booked through the Office for the Aging or any of the Tax-Aide sites.

Please be patient. Early call volume is very high. Please answer your phone when you are called back. Note: the caller ID may be that of one of our volunteers as opposed to the United Way 2-1-1 call center.

Each filer is required to obtain a Pre-Appointment packet, complete the packet prior to their scheduled appointment and come to the appointment with all required tax documents. Pre-Appointment Packets have a complete listing of documents you are required to bring to your appointment. IRS-certified Tax-Aide volunteers will review your tax documents and complete a short interview using the required IRS intake form. After the interview is complete, the volunteer will input tax information using the software provided by the IRS.

Your tax return will be quality reviewed by another IRS Certified Tax Counselor. Once the return is completed, the Tax Counselor will review the entire return with you and obtain your permission to e-file the return. Filers are required to remain at the tax site location during the preparation process.

Please note valuable information you received in your appointment confirmation email regarding additional forms you may need for your appointment.

PRE-APPOINTMENT PACKETS

Printed packets are available at the tax site you are scheduled at during preparation hours. If you have difficulties getting to the site for packet pick-up, contact 875-475-7500.

Pre-Appointment Packet is available for download. Click on the link below.

Pre-Appointment Packet (14 pages)

TAKE A WALK WITH DUTCHESS COUNTY PARKS (JANUARY/FEBRUARY)

Shake off the winter blues and commit to getting your daily steps in in 2023! Walk Around Wednesdays, sponsored by Dutchess County Parks, includes short distance walks of approximately 1-1.5 miles, led by Assistant Park Director Serge Nalywayko. This program is being held from noon-1pm on the next four Wednesdays at various Dutchess County Park locations. Walks are free, but registration is required and are weather dependent. To register, call 845-298-4600.

January 25 – Dutchess Rail Trail Hopewell Depot Trailhead, 36 Railroad Avenue

February 1 – Wilcox Park, State Route 199, Milan

February 8 – Dutchess Rail Trail Morgan Lake Trailhead, Creek Road, Poughkeepsie

February 15 – Bowdoin Park, 85 Sheafe Road

The Dutchess County Parks Division offers a variety of programs for both children and adults and holds special events throughout the year.

FEBRUARY 11TH DEFENSIVE DRIVING CLASS FULL

The February 11th defensive driving class at Boardman Road Branch Library in the Town of Poughkeepsie is completely full – but there’s another one coming up on April 1st at Boardman Road from 9:30am – 3:30pm for $30 per person cash/or check.

Registration will open on February 23rd at 10am. There is no way to register prior to that date; after 10am on that date you can register yourself through www.poklib.org or call 845-485-3445 ext. 3707.

A QUICK NOTE FOR AMTRAK RIDERS

Amtrak has closed the Rhinecliff Station building for renovations. Ticket sales, restrooms, and waiting rooms will be relocated onsite. All train services will continue as before.

Other news:

From Canada, an older husband and wife help flip the narrative on grandparent scams.

What to eat or drink when you have a cold?

Lucile Randon, better known as “Sister Andre” of France, was the world’s oldest woman, but passed away this past week at age 118 as the fourth-oldest verified person in history. The new verified world’s oldest person is 115 (almost 116) and lives in Spain.

This week’s birthdays:

1/22: Singer-songwriter Steve Perry (Journey) (74)

1/23: Actor/MacGyver Richard Dean Anderson (73)

1/24: Singer-songwriter Neil Diamond (82)

1/25: Jazz composer/saxophonist Benny Golson (94)

1/26: Sportscaster/baseball player Bob Uecker (89)

1/27: Actor/activist James Cromwell (83)

1/28: Actor/director/writer Alan Alda (87)

And it’s another Bad Joke to wrap things up!

A book fell on my head the other day. I have only my shelf to blame.

Author: Harlem Valley News