The Silver Haired Legislative Assembly met from July 28-30 in the House Chambers in the State Capitol in Bismarck.
The Assembly was an opportunity for delegates from throughout the state to gather and discuss issues of concern to North Dakota's seniors and to develop legislative bills and resolutions to be forwarded to the 2011 State Legislature.
Delegates to the Assembly were assigned to one of four committees:
Submitted Photo - - Ward County delegate Curtis W. Herman, Minot, served on the Human Services committee at the recent Silver Haired Assembly.
- Education, Medical and Geriatric Services
- Senior Services
- Human Services
- Long-term Care
Ward County delegate Curtis W. Herman, Minot, served on the Human Services committee.
The Silver Haired Legislative Assembly provides grassroots input on aging issues to the state's legislators. The first session was held in 1982 and continues in each even-numbered year, meeting prior to the next state Legislature. The Silver Haired Education Association, a non-partisan and non-lobbying organization, hosts the assembly and focuses on legislative training for seniors.
Bills and resolutions passed at the 2010 Assembly included:
- Bill requesting $1.3 million funding over the next biennium to provide reimbursement to North Dakota Senior Service Providers for currently unreimbursed services provided.
- Resolution encouraging U.S. Congress to increase funding to the Older Americans Act.
- Resolution to recognize and encourage the work of the North Dakota Silver Haired Education Association.
- Bill for an act to provide an appropriation for services and programs for senior citizens.
- Resolution of support to urge the North Dakota Legislature to add Silver Alert to the present Amber Alert bill.
- Resolution in support of a North Dakota State Legislative bill to restore the North Dakota Senior Mill Levy to a dollar-for-dollar match.
- Resolution in support of a North Dakota State Legislative bill advocating for a grant to fund a pilot program to provide for guardian fees.
- Bill urging North Dakota State Legislature to pass legislation that will insure the safety of vulnerable adults who reside in their own homes, in health-care facilities and in residential-care facilities by requiring background checks for everyone who has access to the facility where these people reside.
- Resolution to urge the U.S. Congress to establish a notification network for missing vulnerable senior citizens, similar to the Amber Alert for children.
Assembly delegates were elected earlier this year through their local and county senior organizations and senior citizen centers. They are age 60 and older and have an interest in seniors' issues and the legislative process.
Ray Siver of Grand Forks was elected president for the 2012 Silver Haired Legislative Assembly, with Tony Wixo, McVille, as president pro tem.
Continuing SHEA Steering Committee members include Gen Hutmacher, Watford City, Region 1; Gladys Hempler-Trudell, Minot, Region 2; Minnie Flynn, Dunseith, Region 3; Tony Wixo, McVille, Region 4; Edmund Lenaburg, Portland, Region 5; Theodore Riehl, Flasher, Region 7; and Curtis Herman, Minot, treasurer. New committee member is Sherman Sloan, Mott, Region 8.
Representing North Dakota at the National Silver Haired Congress will be Rep. Warner Knudson, Towner, and senators Dallas Knudson, Towner, and Robert Johnson, Bismarck.
For more information on the assembly and its biannual legislative meeting, contact president Ray Siver, Grand Forks, at 772-2708 or email@example.com.