Tri-County Office on Aging
A Consortium of Clinton, Eaton & Ingham counties, and the
cities of Lansing & East Lansing since 1974.
FRIENDS FOR INDEPENDENCE (FFI)
November 16, 2010 - 12:00 PM
Members Present Members Absent Staff
Dean Poggiali Fritz Kellermann Nancy Kapp
Bob Parsons Ellen Sullivan Marion Owen
Deb Nicolay Rebecca Bahar-Cook Amy Colletti
Doug Chalgian Bruce Dunn Michele Steed (consultant)
Kay Palinski Gordon Robinson, MI Financial Group
I. Welcome & Introductions: Dean Poggiali welcomed everyone to the meeting.
II. Approval of 9/21/2010 minutes: Doug Chalgian made motion to accept the minutes seconded by Danielle
III. Director’s Report: Marion Owen reported that the FY 2011 State of Michigan budget will include an 8%
cut for aging programs. TCOA had been anticipating this and has budgeted accordingly. The Office of
Services to the Aging and the Area Agencies on Aging Association are working on transition papers for the
new governor and legislators to provide information on the aging network and how aging programs save
state and federal dollars. The documents will also focus on the impact of budget cuts over the years and
information on waiting lists for services. The $20 million increase in funds for the Medicaid Waiver
program has been targeted by the legislature to be used for persons transitioning out of nursing homes back
to the community. Those who are currently at home and at imminent risk of going into a nursing home can
only be helped for six months then must be counted in the regular waiver budget. Because of this TCOA
now has a waiting list of over 500 people in the tri-county area. Discussions have been held by legal
advocates regarding a possible law suit based on the landmark Olmstead decision, a historical legal case
where the courts ruled that not offering persons who are nursing home eligible the right to choose living in
the community, in integrated settings, violates the Americans with Disability Act. A lawsuit was filed in
2000 in Michigan using this argument and was successfully used to reopen the Medicaid Waiver program.
IV. Fundraising Reports
A. Print Materials/Social Media Update- M. Steed distributed informational materials that may be
useful for social media and networking policies. An internal group of TCOA staff have been meeting
on a regular basis to work on the new agency brochures and a print designer has been selected. The
social media component, DonorPages, from our fundraising software has been purchased and the
process is underway to update the network server. The next step is to design the page and make it
available for use.
B. 501c(3) Status – M. Steed and Ellen Sullivan were able to connect via Skype and information with
potential pros and cons for applying for a 501c(3) status was distributed. D. Weller commented from
personal experience how non profits indicate they are 501c(3) on their applications and explain their
true status when asked. Some agencies partner with another 501c(3) holder or work through the
community foundation for grants. The subcommittee recommends that more research needs to be
gathered regarding possible fiscal sponsors, project partners and to generate a list of grant/funding
opportunities that we are not eligible for because we are not 501c(3).
Tri-County Office on Aging November 16, 2010
Friends For Independence Coordinating Council Minutes Page Two
C. Activity Report – N. Kapp presented reports and reviewed the following
1. Fall Mailing – 7,454 letters were mailed on Nov. 9th and 129 responses have been received
for $9,635. The 2009 fall mailing had 781 responses for $64,444. Responses for the fall
mailing will be tracked until May 1st.
2. Dinner & Auction – The event was held on November 4 with 366 persons in attendance.
All expenses are accounted for except for the cost of a newspaper thank you ad. This was
the most profitable event held to date with $46,267 in net proceeds!
V. FY 2011 Nutrition Annual Allocation – An electronic vote was held with all members of the committee
voting in favor of allocating the amount of $94,364 ($9,364 for the remainder for the cost of a van and
$85,000 in general funds) for the nutrition program. As is protocol in electronic votes a motion with this
same language was made by Deb Nicolay supported by D. Poggiali.
VI. Gordon Robinson, Michigan Financial Group Investment Overview: Gordon Robinson gave an
overview on the current investment market and the status of the funds from the Capital Campaign invested
by his company. TCOA has a strict policy and all investments must be AAA rated. In 2017 occupancy rates
will decrease but agency Finance Director, Amy Colletti reported that we have seen a large increase in
utilities and building maintenance costs (patches for the parking lot, etc.) since we moved here in 1997. M.
Owen commented that funds from this account were used to equip all the public spaces in the agency. She
discussed the need for a residential style dishwasher in the break room and asked to use funds from this
account to purchase one. Bob Parsons made a motion to allocate up to $500 from the Capital Campaign
fund towards the purchase and installation of a dishwasher, seconded by K. Palinski.
VII. New Business
A. Goal Setting – Discussion was held as to what type of criteria should be used by the committee to set
goals. Setting a number goal may not be in accordance with the purpose of the Friends for Independence
as set forth in our bylaws. B. Parsons, M. Steed and N. Kapp have agreed to meet and prepare a list of
potential goals for the group in the areas of community awareness, outreach and membership for the
Motion to adjourn made by K. Palinski seconded by B. Parsons at 1:09 PM
Action Items Assigned
1 Committee member needed to serve as VP FFI members
2 Third Party Fundraising policy posted to website N. Kapp – Completed
3 501c(3) Status report for next meeting M. Steed, E. Sullivan, D. Nicolay
4 Goal Setting Strategy B. Parsons, M. Steed, N. Kapp