AARP Eye Center
Harrisburg, PA – AARP Pennsylvania State Director Bill Johnston-Walsh provided the following statement today in response to Governor Josh Shapiro’s first budget address:
“On behalf of our 1.8 million members and all Pennsylvanians age 50-plus, we commend Governor Shapiro for proposing a budget that recognizes the critical role that the state’s network of area agencies on aging – often referred to as “triple A’s” – play in assisting older adults to live with independence and dignity in their homes and communities.
“Since being established under the federal Older Americans Act, the role of AAAs has included identifying the priority service needs of the aging population in the community, developing plans of action to address those needs, and serving as visible and effective advocates on behalf of older adults. Investing in the Commonwealth’s network of 52 local area agencies on aging covering all 67 counties will ensure that more older adults can access services and supports in their homes and communities as they age – which is where they prefer to be rather than in a nursing home or other institutional setting.
“Rising property taxes and escalating rents are a critical factor when it comes to empowering Pennsylvanians to remain in their homes, particularly for older residents and those with disabilities living on low-, moderate- and fixed-incomes. We commend Governor Shapiro’s proposal to expand the state’s Property Tax Rent Rebate Program as this commonsense solution takes into account that far too many Pennsylvanians are having to choose between buying food, affording their medications or utility bills, or paying their rent.
“We look forward to working with the Governor and the Pennsylvania General Assembly in the coming months to finalize a budget that strengthens the state’s aging network infrastructure, provides financial relief to seniors, and recognizes the increasing needs of our state’s fastest-growing age group – the 50-plus.”
AARP is the nation’s largest nonprofit, nonpartisan organization dedicated to empowering people 50 and older to choose how they live as they age. With a nationwide presence and nearly 38 million members, AARP strengthens communities and advocates for what matters most to families: health security, financial stability and personal fulfillment. AARP also produces the nation's largest circulation publications: AARP The Magazine and AARP Bulletin. To learn more, visit www.aarp.org, www.aarp.org/espanol or follow @AARP, @AARPenEspanol and @AARPadvocates, @AliadosAdelante on social media.