— With the scheduled end of the 2017 Texas legislative session approaching, AARP continues to fight for passage of several bills that aim to improve nursing home quality, ease the stress of family caregivers, protect older Texans from financial exploitation, and help consumers avoid and respond to surprise medical charges. Here’s a brief overview of some of the issues the AARP Texas team is working on at the state Capitol: Nursing Home Quality and Safety: Texans deserve quality care that ensures …

— Texas Appleseed and AARP today released five “Managing Someone Else’s Money” guides, a toolkit for financial caregivers in Texas who manage money or property for those unable to do so for themselves. This interactive series of guides, in English and Spanish, is available in print and online at www.ProtectTheirMoneyTx.org. Nearly 3.5 million unpaid family caregivers in Texas provide a great labor of love by helping their parents, spouses and others manage their financial affairs – but they often lack the …

— When state lawmakers convene next month for the 2017 legislative session, AARP Texas will pursue an agenda that includes strengthening nursing home quality, easing stress for family caregivers, helping millions of Texans save for retirement, and protecting seniors from financial exploitation. AARP’s non-partisan Texas legislative priorities also include a focus on eliminating surprise medical bills, and advocating for the age 50+ community to ensure that insurance costs are reasonable, coverage is reliable, and utility services are affordable and dependable. The …

— Charlene Hunter James, a long-time volunteer and community advocate in Houston, has been named AARP Texas state president. In collaboration with AARP Texas Director Bob Jackson, who announced James’ appointment, James will have the responsibility, starting Jan. 1, of leading the AARP Texas Executive Council for at least the next two years. She also will work with AARP staff and volunteers to establish strategic goals and objectives on a local level that are consistent with AARP’s national strategies. James, 64, …

— Texas is facing a dramatic rise in elderly abuse inside Texas nursing homes, according to a recent report by KVUE-TV in Austin. The report also said that despite millions of taxpayer dollars being spent to help run the facilities, the State of Texas is failing to hold nursing homes accountable for continued neglect. In addition, a segment of the five-part , KVUE-TV “State of Neglect” report focused on an increase in medication errors in Texas nursing homes and noted a …

— By Mark Hollis AARP Texas AUSTIN, Texas — If you’re Janee Briesemeister, the frequent flyer miles add up quickly. In nearly three decades of advocacy for American consumers, Alaska and Hawaii are the only states Briesemeister hasn’t visited for her work. An undisputed national expert on energy, telecommunications and other utility issues, Briesemeister is a well-traveled, Austin-based champion for a host of consumer causes like making utility bills easier to understand and home energy costs more affordable. The former radio …

— AARP Honors Representative Linda Harper-Brown for Her Leadership  Nine legislators honored for their efforts on behalf of older Texans IRVING, TEXAS–AARP Texas is recognizing the work of State Representative Linda Harper-Brown of Irving by presenting her with a 2013 Legislative Leadership Award. The award recognizes Representative Harper-Brown’s leadership in supporting a “Complete Streets” law in Texas that encourages transportation planners and decision makers to think in terms of access and safety when planning communities or renovating streets. This legislation wouldn’t …

— WHAT: AARP Texas is hosting a panel discussion on finding responsible solutions to the current challenges faced by Medicare and Social Security WHO: The panel will be moderated by Evan Smith, Editor-in-Chief of the Texas Tribune. Panelists will include: Cary Clack, District Director for the Honorable Joaquín Castro, U.S. Representative, CD 20 PLEASE NOTE: Due to congressional proceedings around the government shutdown, Congressman Castro will be unable to attend. Cary Clack will replace him on the panel. Bill Mock, Executive …

— Statement from Amanda Fredriksen, AARP Texas director of advocacy and outreach, in support of executive order on Complete Streets for Houston. “AARP commends Mayor Annise Parker for her leadership in bringing a Complete Streets policy to the nation’s fourth largest city, as well as Council member Gonzalez for his support during this process. This executive order will gradually transform the city of Houston to accommodate all modes of travel, including driving, walking, public transportation and cycling. “A great city like …

— The flu shot: harmless, painless and just in time for the holidays What’s quick and painless and can save you lots of down time during the holiday season? It’s the flu shot, of course, an annual rite for millions of Americans who want to stay active during a time of the year where the seasonal bug traditionally packs a powerful knockout punch. If you are age 50 or older, it’s best to get one according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control …