Pima Council on Aging awaits authorization of federal funding

Pima Council on Aging awaits authorization of federal funding
PCOA was established in 1965. (Source: KOLD)

TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - The Pima Council on Aging (PCOA) is hoping vital funding is re-authorized this legislative session.

The Council was created by the Older Americans Act of 1965 (OAA).

Every few years, Congress passes a bipartisan agreement approving funding for various programs the non-profit provides.

The most recent OAA expired in September of 2019. That’s why a re-authorization bill is now working its way through the House and Senate, one that would increase funding by about 6% annually over the next 5 years.

With a growing senior population in Pima County, PCOA officials say extra money would be put to good use.

“Here in Pima County, between 2010 and 2015, the number of people 80 years old and older increased by about 22%,” said W. Mark Clark, the President & CEO of the PCOA. “There are more people in need of our services every year, and we are trying to meet most of those needs with level -- or nearly-level -- funding.”

Clark says PCOA’s annual budget is about $12 million, $7 million of which comes from the OAA and required local match donations.

This helps fund things like social service programs, nutrition programs, resources for isolated seniors and Meals on Wheels.

The PCOA serves about 20,000 older adults.

To help OAA funding reach the local group, contact your local congressman or congresswoman.

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