Senior Connections

NSHC’s Top 5 Priorities

The National Silver Haired Congress (NSHC) has chosen its Top 5 Resolutions for 2016. Three of these resolutions were submitted by the Nevada Delegation. The top resolution was to again urge the U.S. Congress to implement a Silver Alert notification network for missing elderly citizens. More than half of our states have passed state Silver Alert laws, Nevada being one of them.

The number two resolution, to Create an Ongoing Living Adjustment (SS COLA) Guarantee, was inspired by, and in fact uses the language in H.R. 5295 which is sponsored by Representative Joe Heck ® NV and Representative Richard Nolan (D) of Minnesota.

The National Silver Haired Congress (NSHC) is similar in organization to the U.S. Congress and uses procedures similar to theirs. The NSHC consists of a Silver Senate and a Silver House of Representatives. The Silver Senate is composed of two Silver Senators elected or appointed from each state that participates. The Silver House is composed of the same number of Delegates as Representatives to the U.S. Congress for that state. The NSHC held its inaugural session in February of 1997 in Washington, D.C.

The primary work of their annual session is to consider resolutions submitted by the members. After the session is completed, a legislative report is prepared and distributed to members of the U.S. Congress indicating the issues of most importance to seniors across the country. These issues are then followed up by the NSHC members with their Congressional representatives in Washington and at the local level.

The 18th Annual Session of the NSHC was held in the D.C. area August 12-14, 2016. Fifteen resolutions were submitted for consideration. Two failed to pass through committee and one was withdrawn by the author. Twelve were approved.

After these were approved by the Silver Senate and the Silver House, the NSHC narrowed its focus to the Top 5 priorities. These priorities will be recommended to the U.S. Congress for enactment into legislation to improve the quality of life for aging Americans.

The National Silver Haired Congress’ Top 5 Resolutions for 2016 are:

1. Implement a Silver Alert Notification Network for Missing Elderly Citizens

RESOLVED, that the National Silver Haired Congress urge the United States Congress to establish a Silver Alert notification network for missing vulnerable senior citizens, similar to the Amber Alert for children, so that law enforcement, news media, and the general public may be promptly notified and timely search and rescue may be undertaken when a vulnerable, disoriented elderly person is discovered missing.

2. Create an Ongoing Living Adjustment (SS COLA) Guarantee

RESOLVED, that the National Silver Haired Congress urge the United States Congress to provide certainty by guaranteeing annual COLA increases for Social Security beneficiaries that will help keep these beneficiaries out of poverty, and provide financial security; such as provided in H.R. 5295 by Representative Joe Heck ® NV and Representative Richard Nolan (D) MN.

3. Increase Funding in the States’ HCCBG (Home and Community Care Block Grants) to Support Malnutrition Screening for Older Adults

RESOLVED, that the National Silver Haired Congress urge the United States Congress to
Section 1: Increase funding in the HCCBG program to include malnutrition screening and intervention in essential benefits and Medicare annual exam
Section 2: Include coverage for oral nutrition supplements for malnourished and at-risk dual-eligible populations
Section 3: Collect and analyze Medicare/Medicaid data to improve outcomes with malnutrition screening and intervention
Section 4: Expand medical nutrition therapy coverage to include malnutrition

4. Establish a Senate Standing Committee on Aging

RESOLVED, that the National Silver Haired Congress urge the United States Senate to convert the existing Senate Special Committee on Aging to a Senate Standing Committee on Aging with full legislative authority, and to transfer to that Committee jurisdiction and oversight of issues and programs that primarily affect older Americans.

5. Reform Social Security Funding

RESOLVED, that the National Silver Haired Congress urge the United States Congress to reform Social Security funding by raising the cap on Social Security’s payroll taxes to restore Social Security’s long-term solvency, preferably as a part of an overall comprehensive plan to reform Social Security funding.

Dr. Herb Randall is an advocate for Senior Citizens. He is the Immediate Past President of the Nevada Silver Haired Legislative Forum and a Silver Senator with the Nevada Delegation of the National Silver Haired Congress. He can be contacted at

Station Casinos September Headliners

Cover to Cover

A tribute to The Eagles
Experience live musical tributes to rock music’s most iconic and legendary albums, with Cover to Cover. Featuring world-class musicians and singers, including players that have worked with and backed legendary artists including Celine Dion and David Foster, Cover to Cover takes audiences back to a time when albums were a complete and cohesive piece of art, by performing the famous records track to track, cover to cover the way they were originally meant to be appreciated.
Where: Rocks Lounge
When: Saturday, September 24, 2016 at 4 p.m. and 6 p.m.
Cost: $15 plus tax and applicable fees for general admission
Ages: all-ages show; those under 21 must be accompanied by an adult

38 Special & The Marshall Tucker Band

After more than three decades together, 38 Special continue to bring their signature blast of Southern Rock to more than 100 cities a year. And at each and every show, thousands of audience members are amazed by the explosive power of the band’s performance. With sales in excess of 20 million, most associate the band with their arena-rock pop smashes, including “Hold On Loosely,” “Rockin’ Into the Night,” “Caught Up in You,” “Fantasy Girl,” “If I’d Been the One,” “Back Where You Belong,” “Chain Lightnin’” and “Second Chance” – Timeless hits that remain radio staples, immediately recognizable from the opening chord.
Where: Sunset Amphitheater
When: Friday, September 9, 2016. Doors at 6 p.m.
Cost: $20, $30, $40 and $50 plus tax and applicable fees for reserved seating

Peter Cetera

An original member of legendary rock band Chicago, Peter Cetera began his music career at 11 years old when his parents purchased him an accordion. Cetera came to prominence in the late 1960s after joining the band The Big Thing, who later changed their name to The Chicago Transit Authority, which was then shorted to Chicago. After providing lead vocals on three songs on the band’s debut album, the band jumped back in the studio and released their eponymously-titled album in 1969. The album, which featured the hit single “25 or 6 to 4,” which peaked at number four on the Billboard Hot 100 chart and became the first hit single with Cetera singing lead vocals.
Where: Sunset Amphitheater
When: Friday, September 16, 2016. Doors at 7 p.m.
Cost: $25, $35, $45, $55 and $65 plus tax and applicable fees for reserved seating. 

Community Health Improvement Plan (CHIP)

What is the CHIP? It is more than an acronym. It is the first, multi-agency Community Health Improvement Plan and serves as a template to address health disparities in Southern Nevada. It is a collaborative effort of government agencies, health care providers, non-profits, and academia; a document focused on three priority areas with measures for success. The CHIP will be introduced at an event today at the Clark County Government Center from 10 a.m. – noon and it is available on the Southern Nevada Health District’s

The Community Health Improvement Plan was the next step in a process that started with a Community Health Assessment completed earlier this year. The three priority areas identified by the CHIP address health disparities and move the community closer to the vision of a healthy Southern Nevada. The three focus areas are:

  • Ensuring access to health care and human services to all residents
  • Promoting health by addressing healthy behaviors that can impact chronic diseases
  • Promoting health through informed policy making and appropriate funding for local public health

“The Community Health Improvement Plan provides a comprehensive work plan for public health and its partners and stakeholders to dig in and eliminate health disparities in our community,” said Dr. Joe Iser, Southern Nevada Health District Chief Health Officer. “The work to complete this project has been undertaken by many partners, each of whom has a unique perspective and tools to address the needs of Southern Nevadans. The CHIP can be adapted or adopted by private industry or non-profits as they look at the goals and activities that they can implement to complete pieces of the plan.”

The CHIP will be implemented over a three-year period from 2016 through 2019. An annual report to stakeholders and the community on the CHIP’s progress will be provided by the Southern Nevada Health District; it will be revised as needed. Updates will be shared on Healthy Southern Nevada.

“As we work through the CHIP, we will be asking ourselves ‘are we doing the work we said we would do? Is our work having an impact and are we really addressing the social determinants of health?’ These are concrete ways to measure the success of the CHIP,” added Iser.

So far, the CHIP has been embraced by two community partners, Dignity Health and United Way of Southern Nevada, both of whom have adopted pieces of the plan and are rolling them into their own strategic initiatives. 

Access information about the Southern Nevada Health District on its website: Follow the Health District on Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter

The Health District is available in Spanish on Twitter: Don’t have a Twitter account? Follow the Health District on your phone by texting “follow SNHDinfo” to 40404. Additional information and data can be accessed through

Let the Senior Games Begin

The Nevada Senior Games that is. . .

We have just watched the 2016 Olympics and been amazed and delighted with so many outstanding performances! And now, back to the real world — with an opportunity to try some amazing performances of our own. In just a few weeks the Nevada Senior Games (formerly Nevada Senior Olympics) will begin. Opening ceremonies will be held at the Darling Tennis Center at 9:15, Saturday, September 17. They will be brief — welcoming remarks by Las Vegas City Councilman Stavros Anthony and singing of the National Anthem by former Phantom of the Opera cast member Bruce Ewing. The NSG Tennis Tournament will have begun Friday evening and continue through Sunday morning, September 18. This event will be followed by Dance Competition on Sunday, September 24, and then 17 more events spread out through the valley over the next three weeks, ending with Golf on October 18 and 19. See the NSG website,, for exact dates, times, venues and registration fees, as well as entry deadlines for the various competitions.

This year is a qualifying year for those wishing to compete at the National Senior Games Association tournaments, to be held in June of 2017 in Birmingham, Alabama. Athletes who come in first, second or third (sometimes fourth or with a qualifying score or time) will be able to compete at Nationals. Competitions are based on age groupings: 50 – 54, 55 – 59, 60 – 64, etc. all the way to 100 +. In events which include singles and doubles, partnerships will be competing in the age group of the younger partner. Nationals are held every two years in various locales throughout the United States. In 2015 they were in Minneapolis, Minnesota, and in 2019 they will be in Albuquerque, New Mexico. They provide opportunities for long lasting camaraderie and friendships as well as intense competition.

Nevada has been well represented at Nationals through the years. Seventy-nine competitors formed the 2015 contingency in Minnesota. Six gold medals, 14 silver and 7 bronze, as well as many fourth through eighth place ribbons were won by this group. And “a great time was had by all.” There was a similar showing in 2013 in Cleveland and in Houston in 2011.

Nevada is known as an “open state,” meaning that participants from states other than Nevada (also other countries) are welcome to compete here. Gold, Silver and Bronze medals are awarded for the top three places in each age group division in each event. Out-of-state participants, however, cannot take away medal placements for Nevadans. If the top 3 medals are won by out-of-staters and if a Nevadan is in 4th place, that Nevadan will receive a gold medal as well as the out-of-stater. Although, if the top 3 places are won by Nevadans, a 4th place out-of-stater will not win a medal.

Not all of the Nevada sports are also National events. Dance, Pistol Shoot, Trap Shooting, Weightlifting/Fitness and Walk-a-Thon are not included in the NSGA repertoire at the moment. They are, however, very popular and enjoyable.

Stated goals of the Nevada Senior Games include: to encourage older adults to undertake and continue in a health and fitness-oriented lifestyle; to provide forums for older adults to compete with their peers and to receive recognition for their efforts and achievements in an atmosphere of friendship and support; and to focus public attention on the importance of regular activity/exercise as a way to achieve and preserve better health, especially among older adults.

We hope you will join us in achieving these goals! 

Following Political Action

I’m back. I have been on hiatus since June, but I am anxious to get back communicating with you. I have a few things on my mind, so I am going to approach the subjects by numbering them.

1. When did the whistle blow? When did my generation get off the train?

I remember being on center stage at family gatherings because, after all, my siblings and cousins and I were vital parts of the running of the world! In addition to bringing a new generation into the world, we held responsible jobs that had an effect on our community, positions held in higher education, business administration, the medical and dental fields, engineering, building, real estate and the court system.

When important (and loud) discussions were held, there we were, laying the foundation for our future world. And then our children started going into the world, and they, too, contributed. We were holding and drinking the glasses of wine and singing and playing piano, drums and guitar. We were in the thick of it!

And then the whistle blew! I was reminded of it this summer when I attended my brother’s 90th birthday celebration. I suddenly noticed that my brother, sister, cousin and I were sitting together kind of in a corner while our children and their mates and their children were definitely on center stage! They were drinking the martinis, laughing, singing and discussing the matters of our world! When I did tune in, I comprehended the difference in our outlooks on the world and in particular, America! How did our time of great relevance come and go so fast?

2. I spent much of summer following the political action.

Actually, I was rather obsessed by the entire thing. I mean, let’s face it, like him or not, Donald Trump, and to a lesser degree Bernie Sanders, provided all kinds of stimulating entertainment! Hillary didn’t appear too much, so I can’t say she was very entertaining. I did find her relationship with her husband rather interesting because you never really knew what it consisted of. So that was kind of fun figuring that out! (I never did!)

I felt I learned a lot as I found myself getting on Google and researching amendments to the constitution and the constitution itself. I wanted the exact wording. I am going to continue to do that.

The day of reckoning is coming! The primaries came to an end! The American people will start casting their votes. Yes, they start, some of them way ahead of the appointed election day of November 8. I don’t like that early voting. Don’t like it at all. A million things (well, maybe not a million) could happen before the appointed day. Don’t people understand that? I guess not.

The summer went by quickly, and I notice the year doing the same thing. What will the election bring for 2017 ? We just don’t know. Will we have great changes or not? By next summer, we will certainly know. Stay cool!

Sandy Runkle is the founder and past president of The Speeding Theatre – Over 55. She is also a certified gerontologist. Sandy can be contacted at

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