Senior commission approves shift in leadership

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The Winters Senior Commission on Aging approved new leadership roles and discussed ways to get more input from the community for senior programming at their May 11 meeting.

New leadership
The Senior Commission has faced challenges in maintaining commissioners year-round. The latest seat became open in March when Commissioner Valerie Whitworth resigned from her seat.

At the April 13 meeting, Senior Commissioners elected  Cheryl Sandoval as the Chair, and Tina Lowden as the Vice Chair.

The Winters City Council appointed Karen Conerly to the Winters Senior Commission on Aging at its April 19 meeting. Conerly’s appointment filled the seat following the resignation of Commissioner Dawn Van Dyke. This original appointment of Van Dyke’s term is set to expire in June 2023.

Senior Commissioners approved Conerly as the new Secretary on May 11.

City Manager Kathleet Salguero Trepa confirmed there are still two vacancies to fill on the Senior Commission. Any community member can serve on the Senior Commission on Aging. It is not limited to older adults. The Senior Commission meets on the second Wednesday of the month at 5:30 p.m. via a Zoom link. Meetings are currently via Zoom. More information is on the City of Winters’s website or visit https://tinyurl.com/yz2axy8n.

Senior questionnaire
Senior Commissioners created a survey to collect information from the older adult community regarding their interest in senior programs and what needs they may need fulfilled.

The survey has been made available at community functions and events. However, at the meeting commissioners noted they need more of the surveys filled out and discussed challenges in getting them completed.

Some older adults are as engaged with computer surveys, while others have declined to scan a QR code to access it. Next steps include reaching out to local organizations that serve older adults to see if they can help to distribute the questionnaire, as well as trying to make the QR more accessible.

Community members can take the survey in English at https://tinyurl.com/yvdsx5xy or in Spanish at https://tinyurl.com/2epvjf4m.

Senior Center update
Trepa updated Senior Commissioners on the status of the Senior Center project. According to Trepa, Domas Management Company informed the City of Winters there was an unpaid amount associated with the design of the Senior Center. Domas would provide the design plans to the City once the amount was paid.

Domas originally anticipated building both the Blue Mountain Terrace senior apartments and the Senior Community Center. However, the project ran short of funding and the Senior Center had to be split off to allow the construction of the apartments to finish.

“They continued to design the Senior Center with the understanding the City would pay them once grant funding was obtained,” Trepa said.

Trepa said now that the Senior Center is considered a public works project, state laws prevent Domas from bidding on the project because they designed it.

The City is also looking to secure the original architect, who is no longer with Domas, to help work on the project.

The next Winters Senior Commission on Aging meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, June 8 at 5:30 p.m. via a Zoom link. Meeting information is available on the City of Winters website on the “Senior Commission on Aging” page.

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