Moose Lake Star Gazette - Serving Carlton and Pine Counties Since 1895

Bus services coming to Moose Lake

 


The city council approved bus transportation in the city, Mayor Ted Shaw announced at the White House Conference on Aging Listening Session at the Moose Lake Depot Community Center on Thursday, May 14.

His announcement was good news to the over 50 people in attendance, mostly senior citizens, who have expressed their need for transportation to AWIN volunteers.

The volunteers and coordinator Pamela Jensen for the Aging Well Information Network of Moose Lake (AWIN) have been meeting with senior citizens at the Senior Dining center and with residents of the East and West Manors in the past couple of months.

Jensen and the volunteers had expressed that need to Mayor Shaw at an AWIN committee meeting, and he first brought the need to the city council at the April 8 meeting.

The council approved the request at the May 13 meeting, held the evening before the conference.

“When we met with the seniors, they all mentioned transportation was the top priority,” said Jensen. “I am so happy that the council approved bringing bus service back to the community.”

The bus won’t be providing the service in the community right away.

“It will take a while to get everything in place for the Arrowhead Transit bus to come to the city every week but the bus will happen,” said Mayor Shaw.

Bus service had been provided in the city in the past but the city had voted to discontinue the service several years ago because of the lack of use. The city had provided funding for the service.

Users of the bus service had to pay a nominal fee for riding the bus in the past.

Mayor Shaw said users will probably have to pay a small amount when bus service returns to Moose Lake but did not know how much that amount would be. More information will be provided when it becomes available, he added.

At the White House Conference, sponsored by the Minnesota Board on Aging, the Arrowhead Area Agency on Aging and the Northland Foundation, with AWIN assisting, attendees were asked to list the problems in two categories, Healthy Aging and Long-Term Care, and suggest solutions.

The listening session was one of several held in Minnesota and one of many held throughout the nation. Information gathered at the session will be compiled with information from the other listening sessions and sent to the White House and to the state Legislature to be considered as policies, laws and funding are decided.

During the listening session, the attendees at the various tables listed the problems, such as getting an appointment with busy doctors or mental health professionals in the rural areas, more funding for services to help keep people in their homes longer, insurance companies that have too much influence on the federal level and make long-term care insurance worthless, and lack of information in the community about what services are available for senior citizens.

Possible solutions would be to have more medical and mental health professionals to provide services in the rural area, provide funding for seniors who need volunteers to provide services inside and outside the home and provide background checks of the volunteers, ensuring that long-term care insurance is more effective, help for seniors to fill out complicated forms to obtain services, relaxing the barriers for seniors to qualify for assistance, and more funding for the care of people with Alzheimer’s and dementia, especially for family members who provide that care.

 

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