Senior Services Levy up for renewal

By Derrick Parker - For The Daily Times

PORTSMOUTH – The residents of Portsmouth will vote on a levy next week which will determine whether or not a tax levy for the benefit of supporting senior services will be renewed.

The levy, created by United Scioto Senior Activities (AKA Scioto County Senior Citizens Center), brings in approximately $200,000 annually for senior services.

“Recently, the shift as been from state and federal funding to local funding,” said Renee Ellis, Director of the Senior Center in Portsmouth. “We are dependent on it. If this were not passed, we’d have to make cuts.”

Ellis was quick to point out the renewal would not raise taxes.

“Honestly, it’s just pennies for individuals. But it really helps us. I encourage folks to vote on it.”

The Scioto County Senior Citizens Center was formed in 1979 to help older adults in our area. The services have evolved and expanded throughout the years to be the focal point for those over 60 in Scioto County. The Center provides multiple services such as the CAEO Senior Nutrition Program (which provides both hot meals and home deliveries) Potter House Ministries (which provides Ohio Benefit services such as assistance with Medicaid, Medicare, tax preparation and food assistance), the Retired and Senior Volunteer Program and the Foster Grandparents Program.

Additionally, the levy helps to fund other important senior services such as adult day care, van transportation, health screenings, activities, and much more. The USSA Senior Center is located at 117-119 Market Street in Boneyfiddle. They invite the public to stop by to learn more about their programs.

“I hope people invest in our future and invest in their older relatives,” said Ellis. “My father was a participant here. We even have an adult daycare facility. In my opinion, that’s the best program we’ve ever put together. When the hospital shut it down, I sat down with my board and we made it happen. That’s what I’m most proud of. It has benefited countless families that work and need to have a safe place for a parent or family member.”

“Honestly, the adult daycare is my happy place. It’s the best place in the world. That’s why this levy is so important.”

By Derrick Parker

For The Daily Times