Last month, the Salvation Army asked us to join them in enrolling eligible Medicare recipients (seniors and the disabled) into the prescription drug saving card programs. On Thursday, October 17th between 10:00 AM and 2:00 PM, my staff will be at the Salvation Army (2901 N. Clinton St.) to help applicants complete the forms, make photocopies of the necessary documents, and mailing them to the pharmaceutical companies. This sign-up event is open to everyone who may be eligible: Must be enrolled in Medicare, but not eligible for any type of Medicaid, and must not have any insurance that covers prescriptions. Single people who make less than $18,000, and couples who make less than $24,000 meet the income requirements for Lilly and Pfizer drugs. The Together Rx Card, which includes 7 pharmaceutical companies, has income limits of $28,000 for singles and $38,000 for couples. It is very important that applicants bring their Medicare card, the first page of their Federal tax return for 2001 or their SSA 1099 form if they didn’t file Federal taxes. These are the only documents required, but they are very necessary in the application process. If you or someone you know wants to apply for these savings cards, please come to this event. You do not have to live in Wayne Township to benefit from these cards! They are available nationwide!

In addition to providing applications and information on the pharmaceutical drug programs, I have been working on a way to help indigent people get an emergency supply of medication outside of normal business hours. As it stands now, people who are released from the hospital must wait until the next business day before they can get their medicine. People who are released Friday evening must wait almost 3 days, and if it is a holiday weekend, they must wait even longer! My proposal will allow township-eligible citizens to receive the aid outside of normal business hours, without us incurring ‘after-hours’ expenses. The aid they receive is exactly what they would be eligible for in the first place, so it will not cost the taxpayer any additional money. I am very excited about this program because it will deliver real assistance to people who are in severe need.

For the third year in a row, I am proposing that Wayne Township increases the income eligibility guidelines from 100% to 125% of the federal poverty guidelines as we enter the winter months. This will allow us to help the working families who would not ordinarily be eligible for township assistance, but who nonetheless feel the crunch during the heating season. These expanded guidelines are scheduled to be in effect until April 1, 2003. Also for the third year, Wayne Township and CANI (Community Action of Northeast Indiana, Inc.) are partnering to help enroll our clients who are also eligible for their Energy Assistance Program.


Matthew P. Schomburg

Wayne Township Trustee