H. B. 4471
(By Mr. Speaker, Mr. Kiss, and Delegate Trump)
[By Request of the Executive]
[Passed March 11, 2000; in effect ninety days from passage.]
AN ACT to amend chapter sixteen of the code of West Virginia, one
thousand nine hundred thirty-one, as amended, by adding
thereto a new article, designated article five-s, relating to
the establishment of the Older West Virginians Act; declaring
purpose and objectives, defining terms, establishing role of
bureau of senior services; establishing area agencies,
establishing requirements of service providers; requiring
support services, nutrition services and other services and
programs; and establishing special activities.
Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:
That chapter sixteen of the code of West Virginia, one
thousand nine hundred thirty-one, as amended, be amended by adding
thereto a new article, designated article five-s, to read as follows:
ARTICLE 5S. OLDER WEST VIRGINIANS.
§16-5S-1. Short title.
This article may be cited as the "Older West Virginians Act of
§16-5S-2. Purpose and objectives.
(a) The purpose of this article is to provide guidance and
assistance in the development of new or improved activities and
programs to help older West Virginians maintain independence, honor
and dignity, within available federal and state funds.
(b) This article establishes an array of services which are to
be provided at a no cost or at a reasonable cost for senior
citizens: Provided, That nothing in this article may be construed
to require the provision of any service by the bureau. The service
packages shall be prioritized first to in-home, community based
clients to enable them to remain independent for as long as
possible in local settings. Second level priority services shall
be those which are preventive and supportive in nature.
(c) Management practice shall integrate programs with service
providers and service options through a statewide delivery system.
(d) Programs shall recognize the strengths of the older
population, especially in the areas of volunteerism and leadership, to improve the status of all older individuals in West Virginia.
For the purpose of this article:
(a) "Aging network" means the network of the bureau of senior
services, area agencies on aging, and local providers of direct
services to older individuals;
(b) "Bureau" refers to the bureau of senior services;
(c) "Commissioner" refers to the commissioner of the bureau of
(d) "Focal point" means a facility established to encourage
the maximum collocation and coordination of services for older
(e) "Older individual" or "older West Virginian" or "senior"
or "senior citizen" means an individual who is sixty years of age
(f) "State agency" refers to the bureau of senior services.
§16-5S-4. Powers and duties of the commissioner.
For purposes of this article, the commissioner shall have the
powers and duties set forth in section six, article five-p of this
chapter. In addition, the commissioner shall ensure the bureau
fulfills the requirements of section twelve, article five-p of this
chapter, relating to federal government programs.
§16-5S-5. Powers and duties of the bureau of senior services.
The bureau shall be the designated state agency to:
(a) Develop and administer the state plan as required by the
federal administration on aging;
(b) Be the primary agency responsible for the planning, policy
development, administration, coordination, priority setting and
evaluation of activities related to this article;
(c) Serve as an effective and visible advocate for older West
(d) Divide the state into distinct planning and service areas
and designate for each area a public or private nonprofit agency or
organization as the area agency on aging as required by the federal
administration on aging;
(e) Provide technical assistance and information to area
agencies on aging and local service providers as appropriate and
conduct monitoring of area agencies on aging to insure compliance
with applicable rules, regulations and standards;
(f) Maintain client and service data using a standardized
computer client tracking system through which all providers shall
report required information; and
(g) Maintain letters of agreement with the state department of
health and human resources to provide program operations of the
personal care and aged and disabled waiver programs.
(h) Maintain a registry of companies and organizations that
provide free medications or provide assistance to persons in
securing medications, and make this information available to
consumers through all local senior programs.
§16-5S-6. Area agencies on aging.
The area agencies on aging designated by the bureau shall be
charged with the following:
(a) Prepare and develop an area plan in a format provided by
the bureau and as required by the federal administration on aging;
(b) Enter into agreements and contracts with local service
providers for the provision of supportive services and nutrition
services funded through the federal administration on aging;
(c) Designate, where feasible, a focal point for service
delivery in each community;
(d) Establish an advisory council in accordance with the
requirements of the federal administration on aging;
(e) Serve as an effective and visible advocate for older West
(f) Provide appropriate technical assistance and information
to local service providers and conduct monitoring of local service
providers to insure compliance with applicable rules, regulations
§16-5S-7. Local service providers.
(a) Service providers who offer "Older West Virginians Act"
and related services funded through the federal administration on
(1) Determine the needs of seniors in the particular
geographic area covered by gaining input from the seniors
themselves, their families and care givers;
(2) Develop a plan of service based on the needs of the
seniors in a format provided by the area agency;
(3) Provide supportive services, nutrition services and senior
centers which shall, within available funding, meet the identified
needs of seniors;
(4) Serve as an effective and visible advocate for older West
(5) Participate in the bureau's client tracking system.
(b) Service providers who offer medicaid reimbursed services
(1)Comply with appropriate medicaid regulations and policies
including provider agreements, program manuals and program
(2) Maintain client files, provider information and report as
required for the determination of compliance with established
program standards as determined by the Bureau for Medical Services;
(3) Participate in the bureau's client tracking system.
§16-5S-8. Supportive services.
Supportive services funded through the federal administration
on aging for older West Virginians may include, but are not limited
to: Adult day care, assessment, assisted transportation, care
training, chore, counseling, discount, home repair, housing
assistance, information and assistance, instruction/training, legal
assistance, letter/writing, reading, material aid, nutrition
education, outreach, telephoning, transportation and visiting, all
as defined by the bureau and the federal administration on aging.
§16-5S-9. Nutrition services.
All congregate meals and home delivered meals shall contain
one third of the recommended daily allowance for vitamins and
minerals. Congregate meal sites may include senior centers,
community buildings, schools, churches and elderly housing
complexes. Home delivered meals are to be delivered to eligible
individuals, in accordance with guidelines and standards
established by the bureau and the federal administration on aging.
§16-5S-10. Other services.
The bureau shall also coordinate and provide older West
Virginians the following:
(a) In-home services for those who are frail or at risk of
becoming institutionalized; and
(b) Disease prevention and health screening services.
§16-5S-11. Programs and special activities for older West
(a) The bureau shall continue and maintain its long-term care
ombudsman program codified in article five-l, chapter sixteen of
this code. The bureau shall also design and implement programs for
the benefit of older West Virginians relating to: elder abuse,
neglect and exploitation; elder rights and legal assistance; in-
home personal care for medicaid and non-medicaid eligible senior
citizens; direct services established by the Legislative
Initiatives For the Elderly (LIFE), senior health insurance network
as established by the United States Health Care Financing
Administration and a foster grandparent program as established by
the Corporation for National and Community Service.
(b) The bureau may sponsor the following special activities
for older West Virginians: governor's golden mountaineer program,
a discount program for goods and services at participating
merchants, an annual senior citizens conference providing
educational and entertainment opportunities, a governor's summit on
aging, a silver haired legislature and an annual senior day at the
Legislature. The bureau may sponsor additional special activities