Seniors disturbed by word that their meal program will change

Sheriff Bill Lutze and HHS Director Jean Turner talked to seniors in January.

Sheriff Bill Lutze and HHS Director Jean Turner talked to seniors in January.

One Inyo County senior citizen said he thinks the county is “trying to pay for employee raises by cutting senior programs.” In fact, the $2 million needed to pay for employee wage increases did lead to what officials call Service Redesign because the County does not have the money to pay the $2 million. Service Redesign means, in some cases, cuts.

Details are not provided in the Inyo Supervisors agenda packet for Tuesday, but senior citizens have told Sierra Wave Media that Health and Human Services Director Jean Turner plans to present proposals to scale back senior meal programs. We do not have the official details of such proposals.

Senior citizens in all parts of the county were organizing to go to the Board meeting. Some of them said that they understand the senior meals kitchen in Lone Pine might be cut back to three days per week and that home delivery of meals would be cut to four days per week. Again, we do not have the formal proposal and it was not included in the agenda packet.

The agenda item, a workshop, is scheduled for 1:30 Tuesday afternoon. It says, “Inyo County Growing Older Living with Dignity (IC-GOLD) Service Redesign.”

At the end of January, Ms. Turner and Sheriff Bill Lutze had met with senior citizens and the kitchen staff in Lone Pine and Bishop to talk about Service Redesign. At that time, there was talk about the Jail kitchen possibly taking over production of senior meals. Seniors said Ms. Turner met with senior citizens again last week when she reportedly revealed some potential changes.

In other matters before the Inyo Board Tuesday, Planning officials will conduct a workshop on the planning of power transmission lines and the potential for one or more new lines to come through Inyo County from Nevada. Officials will consider preparing letters to respond these matters. A workshop on this issue is scheduled for 11am.

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4 Responses to Seniors disturbed by word that their meal program will change

  1. Clear View May 18, 2014 at 9:06 pm #

    “Service Redesign” = Robbing Peter to pay Paul

    Paul = Employee Raises

    It is interesting that Mono County is asking all employees to take a 5% cut in pay by the BOS and in Inyo County, the BOS voted to give employees raises that they had no way to fund without cutting existing programs and services. Of course they don’t say that. They say “Service Redesign” because they think no one will notice.

    The taxpayers and needy will pay the price for the Inyo Board’s incompetence.

  2. Desert Tortoise May 19, 2014 at 7:38 am #

    If enough residents show up at the BoS meetings and state their opposition to the Board’s actions, they will be forced to reconsider. If no one shows up to voice opposition, then the BoS will rightly assume no one is opposed, or cares. I have seen time after time where a combination of good reportage in the media combined with an active social media brings an angry crowd to a city council meeting and forces the cith council to back down.

  3. Bob May 19, 2014 at 8:29 am #

    The County has failed our Seniors and should be held accountable.

  4. RAM May 19, 2014 at 3:10 pm #

    WTH, If the county is cutting services they damn well better be cutting pay


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