Concordia Senior Center, regrettably, decides to cut hours of operation

Wednesday, June 5, 2019
Deb Krieger, Regional Service Director for Care Connection for Aging Services, delivered some sober news to patrons of the Concordia Senior Center on Wednesday, May 29. Krieger informed those in attendance the center would be closing on Mondays beginning June 3, 2019, in an effort to bring finances back to a point where the center remain in operation in the future.
Bob Stewart/The Concordian

During the lunch hour on Wednesday, May 29, 2019, Deb Krieger, Regional Service Director for Care Connection for Aging Services, addressed patrons of the center to inform them of upcoming changes.

“I am sorry to have to give you some bad news,” Krieger said. “It has been a bad year financially for the Concordia Senior Center. We started the fiscal year in July of 2018 with about $13,000 in reserves. With a month left in the current fiscal year, we have all but depleted those reserves.”

Krieger said a couple of things played into the financial problems, including the increase in the mandatory minimum wage and decreased revenues from fundraising activities. She reminded patrons the center functions on funds received from three sources: (1) the Older Americans Act, which grants monies to area agencies on aging who then pass those funds on to local centers; (2) contributions from patrons who participate in the lunches and programs of the local center; and (3) fund raising activities throughout the year.

“We met recently with the local Center Services Board to see what we might be able to do to shave expenses,” she said. “After analyzing different ideas, we found that closing the center one day each week would result in a $14,000 savings per year. And if we were to start the Monday closure beginning June 3, we would end the current fiscal year on June 30 with a balance of just under $200.”

She said that, with regret, the local board recommended such a move to the agency’s Executive Board. That board, also with deep regret, approved the closure of the Senior Center one day per week to begin on June 3, 2019. The center will still be open as usual from Tuesday through Friday each week. She said the senior center in Windsor had gone to a four-day week, being closed on Fridays, and the center in Holden was now open every weekday except Wednesday.

Krieger said the Concordia Senior Center will continue to provide the same number of meals to the homebound as it currently does. The meals will be delivered on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays.

“None of us wanted to do this, but we believe it is the best way to keep the center open,” Krieger said. “And there are a couple of things you can do to help us get the funds back to where they need to be. If you have an extra quarter, throw it in the moneybox. And if there is a fundraising event planned, support it personally and tell all of family and friends to come along.”

Krieger said it will take $43,672 in funds generated by fundraising activities to balance the budget for FY2020, which begins July 1, 2019 and ends June 30, 2020.

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