— AARP is here to help you take on today – and every day. From sharing practical resources, to holding fun activities and events, AARP is providing opportunities to connect and help build an even stronger North Dakota for all ages to live, work and play. We hope you’ll join us!

— Check out the October AARP North Dakota newsletter. Stories include: Telephone Town Halls with U.S. Senate Candidates. Burkholder Named Recipient of Volunteer Award. Caregiving Expert to Speak in Bismarck and Fargo. Minot, Grand Forks Caregiving Lunch and Learns. Upcoming Coffee and Conversations in Mayville, Cavalier, and Valley City. Monthly legislative update calls with Advocacy Director Mike Chaussee. Upcoming driver safety classes around the state. Get Help with Medicare Part D during Open Enrollment If you’d like to receive the newsletter …

— Have a question for North Dakota’s candidates for the U.S. Senate? AARP North Dakota is hosting two separate telephone town halls with both candidates for U.S. Senate. We’ll have Rep. Kevin Cramer on the phone from 7-8 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 16. The town hall with Senator Heidi Heitkamp will be from 5:45-6:45 p.m. Monday, Oct. 22. You will be able to ask questions of the candidates as well as listen to the conversation. To be sure you receive the call …

— AARP North Dakota is sponsoring candidate debates beginning Sept. 4 on Prairie Public Broadcasting. The debates feature candidates for the U.S. Senate, U.S. House of Representatives, Public Service Commission, and Secretary of State. Here is the debate schedule. All of the debates will be broadcast live on Prairie Public’s television network and all times are Central. Public Service Commission Unexpired 2-year-term Casey Buchmann (D) and Brian Kroshus (R) 7-7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 4 Public Service Commission 6-year-term Jean Brandt …

— The North Dakota Legislative Assembly only meets every other year. However, during the “interim,” legislative committees will study a wide array of important issues. AARP will be closely watching issues related to health care access and affordability, home- and community-based services, retirement security, property taxes, and other issues important to North Dakotans 50 and older. To keep our members current on these interim studies, AARP North Dakota is hosting a monthly webinar/conference call. During these calls, expect to hear what …

— Amy Goyer, AARP’s Family and Caregiving expert and author of “Juggling Life, Work, and Caregiving,” will be the featured speaker at AARP North Dakota’s lunch and learns Nov. 14 in Bismarck and Nov. 15 in Fargo. Goyer is a nationally known expert on aging and families, specializing in family caregiving, grandparenting, and multigenerational issues. She has spent more than 30 years advocating for and serving older adults and families. A recognized media authority, she has appeared on Good Morning America, …

— In a newly released AARP poll, North Dakota voters age 50 and over are united in their concern over health care and personal finance issues. The poll found that health care and Social Security are critically important issues to 50-plus voters as they cast their ballots this fall, and a strong majority (79 percent) believe it is unfair to deny coverage or charge those with pre-existing conditions more for health care. The survey is part of AARP’s “Be the Difference. …

— AARP members are invited to join us for coffee and conversation when we are in your neighborhood. The locations we plan to be at before the end of the year are listed below. Check back here for updates on locations in each community. A volunteer leader from AARP North Dakota’s Executive Council will moderate the 60-90 minute conversation. We’ll spend just a few minutes talking about our work to support family caregivers in North Dakota, health care, and some of …

— Medicare contributes $1.3 billion to North Dakota’s economy, equivalent to 12 percent of state and local government spending in the state, according to a new report from AARP. Medicare also covers 116,951 beneficiaries in the state. Older Americans have said Medicare is one of their top issues in the 2018 mid-term elections, and AARP North Dakota is working to encourage voter participation this election season. “Medicare is a major economic engine in our state’s economy, as well as a key …

— An expert witness testified in support of AARP’s concerns about Montana-Dakota Utilities’ proposal to raise natural gas rates during a North Dakota Public Service Commission technical hearing May 30-June 1. MDU is asking for a $3.6 million increase applied to residential customers and general service (large commercial users) customers. AARP formally intervened in this rate case allowing us to testify against the rate proposal during the hearing. AARP raised the following issues with MDU’s proposal: The collection of the increase …

— RaeAnn Johnson of Grand Forks and Cindy Yale of Burlington have been appointed to the AARP North Dakota Executive Council. Johnson has been a social worker since 1985. She has spent most of her career working at the Northeast Human Service Center in Grand Forks. Since 1991 she has served as a vocational rehabilitation counselor and as a program administrator. In her work at the Human Service Center, Johnson recruited and managed volunteers through the Retired and Senior Volunteer Program, …