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Minnesota Legislature

Office of the Revisor of Statutes

256.975 Minnesota board on aging.

Subdivision 1. Creation. There is created a Minnesota board on aging consisting of 25 members to be appointed by the governor. At least one member shall be appointed from each congressional district and the remaining members shall be appointed at large. No member shall be appointed for more than two consecutive terms of four years each. In making appointments, the governor shall give consideration to individuals having a special interest in aging, and so far as practicable, shall include persons affiliated with agriculture, labor, industry, education, social work, health, housing, religion, recreation, and voluntary citizen groups, including senior citizens.

The governor shall designate the chair. Other officers, including vice-chair and secretary, shall be elected by the board members.

Subd. 1a. Removal; vacancies. The membership terms, compensation, removal of members, and filling of vacancies on the board shall be as provided in section 15.0575.

Subd. 2. Duties. The board shall carry out the following duties:

(a) to advise the governor and heads of state departments and agencies regarding policy, programs, and services affecting the aging;

(b) to provide a mechanism for coordinating plans and activities of state departments and citizens' groups as they pertain to aging;

(c) to create public awareness of the special needs and potentialities of older persons;

(d) to gather and disseminate information about research and action programs, and to encourage state departments and other agencies to conduct needed research in the field of aging;

(e) to stimulate, guide, and provide technical assistance in the organization of local councils on aging;

(f) to provide continuous review of ongoing services, programs and proposed legislation affecting the elderly in Minnesota;

(g) to administer and to make policy relating to all aspects of the older Americans act of 1965, as amended, including implementation thereof; and

(h) to award grants, enter into contracts, and adopt rules the Minnesota board on aging deems necessary to carry out the purposes of this section.

Subd. 3. Policy. The board shall recommend to the state legislature no later than January 1, 1977, a proposed state policy for citizens dependent on long term care and services. The proposed state policy shall address, but need not be limited to, the following:

(a) Developing alternatives to institutionalization in long term care facilities and other programs which will assist each citizen dependent on long term care and services to maintain the highest level of self-sufficiency and independence which the citizen's mental and physical condition allows;

(b) Developing methods for ensuring citizens dependent on long term care and services an effective voice in determining which programs and services are made available to them;

(c) Protecting citizens dependent on long term care and services from unnecessary governmental interference in private and personal affairs; and

(d) Informing citizens dependent on long term care and services of the programs and services for which they are eligible.

Subd. 4. Home-delivered meals. The board on aging shall take appropriate action to secure reimbursement from public and private medical care programs, health plans, and health insurers for home-delivered meals that are a necessary part of medical treatment for the elderly.

Subd. 5. Programs for senior citizens and handicapped persons. Any sums collected under section 325F.71 must be deposited into the state treasury and credited to the account of the state board on aging. The money credited to the account of the state board on aging is annually appropriated to the state board on aging and shall be expended for the following purposes:

(1) to prepare and distribute educational materials to inform senior citizens, handicapped persons, and the public regarding consumer protection laws and consumer rights that are of particular interest to senior citizens and handicapped persons; or

(2) to underwrite educational seminars and other forms of educational projects for the benefit of senior citizens and handicapped persons.

Subd. 6. Indian elders position. The Minnesota board on aging shall create an Indian elders coordinator position, and shall hire staff as appropriations permit for the purposes of coordinating efforts with the National Indian Council on Aging and developing a comprehensive statewide service system for Indian elders. An Indian elder is defined for purposes of this subdivision as an Indian enrolled in a band or tribe who is 55 years or older. The statewide service system must include the following components:

(1) an assessment of the program eligibility, examining the need to change the age-based eligibility criteria to need-based eligibility criteria;

(2) a planning system that would grant or make recommendations for granting federal and state funding for services;

(3) a plan for service focal points, senior centers, or community centers for socialization and service accessibility for Indian elders;

(4) a plan to develop and implement education and public awareness campaigns including awareness programs, sensitivity cultural training, and public education on Indian elder needs;

(5) a plan for information and referral services including trained advocates and an Indian elder newsletter;

(6) a plan for a coordinated health care system including health promotion/prevention, in-home service, long-term care service, and health care services;

(7) a plan for ongoing research involving Indian elders including needs assessment and needs analysis;

(8) information and referral services for legal advice or legal counsel; and

(9) a plan to coordinate services with existing organizations including the council of Indian affairs, the Minnesota Indian council of elders, the Minnesota board on aging, and tribal governments.

HIST: 1961 c 466 s 1,2; 1974 c 536 s 1; 1975 c 271 s 6; 1976 c 134 s 59,60; 1976 c 275 s 1; 1986 c 404 s 10; 1986 c 444; 1989 c 282 art 2 s 121; 1989 c 294 s 1; 1995 c 207 art 3 s 17