News of Riverton, Lander and Fremont County, Wyoming, from the Ranger's award winning journalists.
'Good ol' boy' rules at senior center
Apr 12, 2012 - George Bartlett, Riverton
The "'good ol' boy" syndrome is alive and well at the Riverton Senior Citizens Center. Not only do members of the board of directors elect and re-elect themselves, they also carefully select only new members who support the status quo.
This means, for the most part, that any serious discussions that take place will be held in executive sessions without a report of the executive session when the regular meeting is reconvened. This is done in spite of the fact that the Older Americans Act very specifically says that program participants will be included in the development and operation of such programs.
No attempt has been made by either the board or center staff to explain the specific programs objectives or seek participant input in the development and operation of these programs.
No reports are provided as to the progress being made or the problems encountered, so program participants are essentially in the dark as to what is happening with their center and why.
A group of concerned seniors was contacted by the State Office on Aging staff and asked to submit their concerns to arbitration but that opportunity was rejected by the center board of directors, a board which apparently wishes the group would just dry up and go away.
Perhaps it's time for seniors to take a more active role in the selection of board members and choose people who might actually be interested in developing and promoting the center instead of just maintaining the status quo.