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2015 News

Commissioners Celebrate Older Americans Month with Business Meeting at Bensalem Senior Center

May 6, 2015

The automated Bingo hopper wasn’t the only thing with numbers of interest during the May 6 business meeting of the Bucks County Board of Commissioners. An agenda featuring 34 items for consideration included several grants that will provide the residents of Bucks County with various services.

Najja Orr, Director of the Area Agency on Aging, holds the proclamation and listens along with Commissioner Martin as the speaker talks about the benefits of Senior Community Centers.Commissioners Robert G. Loughery, chairman, Charles H. Martin and Diane M. Ellis-Marseglia, LCSW visited the vibrant Bensalem Senior Center for a crisp, 34-minute agenda that was the prelude to lunch and the aforementioned Wednesday Bingo card. Ultimately, the board unanimously passed 33 contract resolutions, also tabling (by a 3-0 vote) a three-year $215,730 Purchasing agreement to provide microfilm services for the Clerk of Courts and Domestic Relations offices. That contract will undergo further scrutiny.

The meeting began with a bit of levity as 20-year Commissioner Martin read a proclamation designated May, 2015 as “Older Americans Month” throughout the County of Bucks. “Somehow, I knew I was going to get this one,” he quipped. Commissioner Martin reminded seniors in the room that the 33rd Annual Bucks County Senior Games will take place June 1-6 at locations around the county. Detailed information about the games is available on the home page of the official County website, www.BucksCounty.org. Accepting the proclamation were County Area Agency on Aging (AAA) Director Najja Orr and AAA Advisory Board Chairperson Frances Reaman. Mrs. Reaman reminded attendees that proceeds from the Pennsylvania Lottery benefit senior citizens every day.

For the District Attorney’s office, the board approved a one-year, $218,950 grant application and award through the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, Insurance Fraud Prevention Authority to support the prosecution and investigation of insurance fraud. Another significant grant involved the Juvenile Probation department and an 18-month, $146,367 grant application and subsequent award documents through the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency for the PCCD Victims of Juvenile Offenders grant.

The General Services’ portion of the agenda included a one-year, $34,140 contract increase and extension with INTEX Environmental Group, Inc. of Pipersville to provide services as required by the Pennsylvania DEP at the Hidden Valley Landfill. The commissioners also approved a five-year, $33,300 increase and extension of a lease for County property located at 2659 Trenton Road in Levittown with Ravenhill Psychological Associates.

For the Health Department, the commissioners approved a pair of one-year storage contract renewals for public health preparedness equipment – one with A. Mastrocco Jr. Moving and Storage, Inc. ($11,820) and one with Richem Company of Bensalem ($15,000).

The agenda also featured the approval of three Human Resources union contracts impacting more than 400 County employees. They included a four-year renewal with the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees Unit 05 for court employees, a four-year renewal with AFSCME Unit 05 for court related row offices and a four-year renewal with the International Union of Operating Engineers Unit 02. All three agreements run through Dec. 31, 2016. Chief Operating Officer Brian Hessenthaler explained the terms of the contracts, noting that they effectively moved 475 employees from the old County health plan to the new one – at a significant cost savings.

A representative from the Bensalem Senior Center, along with AAA Director Najja Orr, accept the Older Americans Proclamation from the Commissioners.During the “other civics” portion of the agenda, the commissioners unanimously agreed to allocate $1,000 to the Bensalem Senior Center for the many programs benefiting its members.

COO Hessenthaler provided an update on Bucks County’s most recent Medication Take Back event (April 25, 2015), which generated almost 8,000 pounds of unwanted prescription and over-the-counter medicine. That total was more than double neighboring Montgomery County and more than Montgomery, Chester and Delaware combined. Mr. Hessenthaler also reminded residents that the Municipal Primary election is Tuesday, May 19. “Please get out and vote,” he added.

Chief Clerk Lynn T. Bush reminded residents that the first of five 2015 Household Hazardous Waste will take place on Saturday, May 9 from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. (rain or shine) at Harry S. Truman High School, 3001 Green Ln., Bristol Township. Information about eligible items is available at the link: http://www.buckscounty.org/docs/default-source/pc/2015householdhazardouswastecollection.pdf?sfvrsn=0.

Chairman Loughery concluded his remarks by asking for his colleagues’ support of a pair of state bills that ask to share funding from the PA Housing Finance Authority with all 67 Pennsylvania counties. Those bills are currently in the House and Senate process.

The next meeting of the Board of Bucks County Commissioners will take place at 6:00 p.m. (please note time) on Wednesday, May 20, 2015, in the Bucks County Administration Building Community Room (1st Floor), 55 E. Court St., Doylestown, PA 18901. For a complete audio account of the May 6, 2015 business meeting, please visit the official county website, www.BucksCounty.org, and click on the “Audio from Last Mtg” link on the home page.