JEFFERSON CITY -- Dale Johnson of Alton was in attendance when Silver Haired Legislature (SHL) delegates from across Missouri selected their top five priority issues for presentation. The issues will be presented to the 2004 Missouri General Assembly.
SHL members from across the area met for their 30th legislative session Oct. 22-23. Johnson said delegates debated and voted on 21 separate bills during the two-day session at the Ramada Inn and House and Senate chambers at the state capitol.
He said delegates heard presentations from Gov. Bob Holden and state budget director Linda Luebbering.
"At the conclusion of the session, delegates voted on their top five priority bills for presentation to the General Assembly," Johnson said.
The session will convene in mid-January.
He said SHL priorities include home delivered meal funding. "This issue would ask legislators to provide an additional $1 million to the Department of Health and Senior Services budget for the purpose of providing home delivered meals to the elderly," Johnson said.
"Priority II is transportation for seniors and disabled. This would ask the Legislature to appropriate additional funds to enhance access to transportation for the elderly and disabled citizens of the state," he said.
Priority III, property tax relief for seniors, would provide that once a person reaches 65, their homestead would be exempt from increases in property taxes as long as they own land and live on the property.
Priority IV, SHL funding, would put a permanent line item budget for the SHL in the Department of Health and Senior Service.
Priority V, predator lending -- this issue would provide safeguards to be written and implemented to protect elderly people from unscrupulous lenders.