Resources

Commission on Aging

On May 15, 1985, the Town of East Lyme passed an ordinance that created the Commission on Aging.  The Commission is a 7 member Board consisting of interested residents of the Town which must have minority representation.

The purpose of the Commission is to:

  1. Review and analyze the needs and conditions of the elderly persons of the Town in relation to housing, nutrition, employment, health, recreation, social services, transportation, and other matters and problems within the jurisdiction of the Commission.
  2. Plan, coordinate, develop and implement programs to meet the needs and to improve the conditions of the elderly persons of the Town, upon the Board’s own initiative or on the recommendations of the Senior Citizen Administrator.
  3. Through the Senior Center Director and others, as necessary, provide coordination of such plans and programs among all related services.

The monthly meetings are held on the 2nd Monday of every month starting at 5pm. The meetings are held at the Senior Center and the public is welcome to attend. If a member of the public has a concern and wants to address the Board, there are two ways in which this can be handled. At the Board meeting, a person can address the Board during the Delegations section of the meeting. Or, a person can ask the Senior Center Director to add an item to the monthly meeting Agenda.

The current makeup of the Board is:

Joe Palazzo                  Chairperson

John Whritner            Vice-Chairperson

Ilene Harris                 Secretary/Treasurer

Marge Caste                Board Member

Barbara Smith            Board Member

Joan Bengston            Board Member

Michael Bekech          Board Member

Roseanne Hardy        Selectman and Ex-Officio

 

The East Lyme Senior Center can assist you or someone you know with regards to services available within our community. If you have questions, please call at 860-739-5859 for an appointment.

 

    So, What’s Going on at Senior Centers during COVID – Content by Judy


    People continue to be surprised on what is still happening in Senior Centers as we continue dealing with COVID and all of those restrictions.

    Well first off, the Senior Center Staff is still working. They are just as helpful as they were when you were there. They miss you, too!! They cannot wait for you to come in those doors!

    The staff is just as committed to serving you – it’s just that things are different

    The Senior Center phone lines are manned, and you can still get your questions answered. Call and let them know what you need help with.

    You can still sign up for Meals on Wheels, Fuel Assistance, Elderly & Totally Disabled Tax Relief Program, AARP income tax assistance, and other programs. Or get the information on how you can apply.

    You can find out which of these programs you are eligible for. Plus, any others you might be able to take advantage of.

    You can get Meals on Wheels delivered to your home.

    Most Senior Centers are still providing transportation.

    Many Senior Centers have meals you can order and pick-up curbside.

    If your local Senior Center is not distributing food, they can tell you where your closest location is.

    There are lots of virtual and Zoom classes available. The beauty of those is that you can attend events that are well out of your area. There is no need to travel to a Senior Center across the state. Just register and login on the day and time the event is happening.

    SeniorCenterCt.org has a Zoom calendar on the main landing page. Just click on the Zoom Calendar icon and you’ll find any number of things you can do.

    Here is an example of some of the virtual and Zoom classes that you might find: Tai Chi, Genealogy, Sing Along, Trivia, lectures on a number of topics, paint night, bingo and more!!

    So, call your Senior Center and see if you can pick up jigsaw puzzles, books from the Senior Center Library, or maybe even craft kits. Who knows, give them a call, and ask!!

    So even though, you might have thought your Senior Center is CLOSED, it’s not really…. It’s just that the public cannot go into the building.

    SENIOR & DISABLED HOMEOWNERS’ TAX RELIEF 2021

    The State of Connecticut offers a state run Elderly Tax Benefit known as the Circuit Breaker. It is for eligible real estate taxpayers within the Town of East Lyme. To apply, you must have reached the age of 65 prior to     December 31, 2020 or be totally disabled if under the age of 65. You are applying for a credit on the taxes due on your primary residence in East Lyme. Under the law, Social Security income MUST be declared and the program requires you to provide information regarding all GROSS income received during 2020.

    The new income limit, including GROSS income and Social Security:

    $45,800 for married couples and

    $37,600 for single persons.

                            LOCAL TAX CREDIT OPTION:

    Also, the Town of East Lyme provides on Additional Tax Relief for elderly and totally disabled homeowners. The new income limit, including GROSS income and Social Security is

    $45,800 regardless of marital status.

    For further information, contact the Assessor’s Office at the Town Hall.

     

    Filing dates for the above programs are February 1, through May 15, 2021.

    Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Assessor’s Office does not yet know how they will be processing the applications.

    Please call their office before you go to the Town Hall.

     

    There is also a Veteran’s Exemption that is available. For more information, contact the Assessor’s Office.

     

    ENERGY ASSISTANCE FOR 20/21 FALL&WINTER SEASON

    Applications for the Connecticut Energy Assistance Program are being taken at the New London office of TVCCA. This year, due to the COVID pandemic, phone applications will be processed by TVCCA. In order to set up a phone appointment with TVCCA, you will need to call 860-425-6681. They will provide you with further details.

    The Senior Center will assist the Senior and Disabled population of East Lyme with their applications. Please call the Senior Center at 860-739-5859 for instructions on how your application will be processed. For residents who reside in Twin Haven and the AHEPA housing complexes, letters will be sent to you with your instructions.

    To be eligible:

    1. In a one-person household, income can be NO greater than $36,645. In a two-person household, income can be NO greater than $49,228.
    2. If you are a renter, the first $12,000.00 in liquid assets is disregarded. Any amount over that limit, when added to the annual gross income must be below the income guidelines.
    3. If you are a homeowner, the first $15,000.00 in liquid assets is disregarded. Any amount over that limit, when added to the annual gross income must be below the income guidelines.

     

    The following information is required:

    1. Proof of income sources: copy of most recent monthly (quarterly, annual) check or copy of an award letter or copy of most recent bank statement showing the direct deposit. If you are employed you must provide a copy of your four most recent consecutive pay stubs.
    2. Dividends, annuities or interest income (has to be more than $10/month). Copy of a statement for the most recently completed period.
    3. Proof of what you pay for rent. In addition, the name, address and telephone number of your landlord is required. If you are a homeowner and pay a mortgage, you must provide proof of your mortgage payment.
    4. If you have a checking and/or savings account, you must bring in the most recent ENTIRE statement.
    5. If natural gas or electricity heats the household, bring in the most recent ENTIRE statement.

     

    Please remember all members of the household who receive income must report their income.

     

    AARP TAX-AIDE 2021

    The AARP Tax-Aide program provides free tax counseling and preparation for middle to low-Income taxpayers with special attention to those people aged 60 and over.  Because of COVID-19 concerns, the process will be different this year. Please call the Senior Center at 860-739-5859 for details.

    Taxpayers must provide their:

    1. Personal Identification and Social Security Number,
    2. Copies of your 2020 Federal and Connecticut tax returns, and
    3. All 2020 income reports that have been received: (SSA-1099, all 1099s, all W-2s, Unemployment Compensation forms), Brokerage Statements, and all  other forms that indicate Federal and/or Connecticut income taxes were paid in 2020.

     

     

    “Don’t Let the Old Man In” – Content by Judy

    Toby Keith was inspired to write this song by Clint Eastwood who was about to turn 88. Toby Keith wanted to know what Clint Eastwood was going to do for his birthday and Clint said he was starting to make his new movie “The Mule” that next week.

    Amazed Toby wrote about keeping that “Old Man” at bay. As the song says, “How old would you be if you didn’t know the day you were born?”

    We all say “I don’t feel as old as I am” which is so true. There are times we are shocked when we look in the mirror because we have forgotten the number of years that have passed by. If we do not think about it, we can do what we have always done regardless of our age.

    And as we move into this new year it is time to think and decide how we want to live. How we do not want to let that old man in. How we want to live, do what we love and expand what we are doing.

    It is time to make our Bucket List for 2021 and 2022. What do you want your 2021 and 2022 to look like? What is your next act? If we do not plan for our future that old man just might seek in when we are not looking!

    It does not have to be just huge things. What are the little things…?

    Maybe… Enjoy the sunset more. Visit with family and friends more. Make 2 new friends. Read a good book. Maybe join a book club. Garden. Grow your own salad. Take a walk. Go someplace new each month. Redo a room in your house. Paint the walls and rearrange the furniture. Clean out the garage or the shed or both. Make a scrapbook of past vacations. Plan new vacations. Take an online class. Learn how to do 3 new things on your computer or smart phone. Do something kind for someone you hardly know.

    For bigger things it might be take that road trip. Volunteer weekly at a school, hospital, or Senior Center. Do a makeover – you, the backyard, or your wardrobe. Brew your own beer. Learn a craft – maybe counted cross-stitch, carving, knitting. Reread your favorite book. Learn to meditate, then meditate daily for a month. Eat healthy and learn to cook new recipes. Redo your budget so you free up money to do the things you are always talking about doing! Book your next big trip!!

    And as you make your Bucket List include another list of all the things you want to do as places open back up!! What have you missed the most? What was it you were planning for 2020 you never got to do?

    And remember you are never ever “TOO OLD” to do anything!! Get out there and live. “Don’t let the old man in”