Town of Colonie - Senior Resources

Programs and Services

These services are available to senior residents of the Town of Colonie. Since programs are subject to change, please call 459-5051 for the latest information.

Benefits Assistance Program
Our "one-stop-shopping" approach to applying for benefits provided by various agencies allows Town residents to apply for a host of programs in one painless afternoon without the stress of going to different agencies and locations. The second Friday of each month representatives from Albany County Medicaid unit, Legal Aid Nutrition Outreach for SNAP benefits (formerly known as Food Stamps), The Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP) and The Weatherization Program (WRAP).

Farmers' Market Nutrition Program
The locally grown fresh fruits and vegetables provided by this program offer important health benefits to seniors, as well as provide economic stimulus to New York State farms and local farmers' markets in this state and federal funded program. Farmers' market coupons are available for income eligible seniors over the age of 60. The Farmers' Market at the Crossings is a participating market.

SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) formerly known as Food Stamps
A monthly allotment is given to low income households for the purchase of food items. Eligibility is based on income, monthly shelter and medical expenses. A representative from Legal Aid Nutrition Outreach and Education is available in our office on the second Friday of each month to assist with determining eligibility and applying for benefits. Appointments are necessary and you can contact our office for more information or to schedule an appointment at 459-5051, ext. 2.

HEAP (Home Energy Assistance Program)
This program issues heating benefits to supplement a household's annual energy cost by submitting a one-time payment directly to your heat supplier. Additionally, there is a one-time emergency benefit for households that have a no heat emergency situation. This program is typically available during the months of November-March, subject to change without notice. For 2012-2013 the income guidelines are: $2,138 - 1 person household and $2,796 - 2 person household. Eligible persons are able to apply for this benefit during our Benefit Assistance Program that is held on the second Friday of each month. Please contact our office directly to schedule an appointment at 459-5051, ext. 2.

Income Tax Assistance
Volunteers trained by the IRS and AARP prepare income tax returns for seniors during February through mid-April at two Town locations. Appointments are necessary and you can schedule one by calling 459-5051, ext. 2.

Legal Assistance
For residents of Albany County who are 60 years of age or older. This project is funded by the Albany County Department for the Aging and the Legal Aid Society of Northeastern New York. The attorney comes to Colonie once a month and can give legal advice on variety of issues. An appointment is needed, please call 459-5051, ext. 2.

Caregiver Support Services
The Senior Resources Department provides individual support assistance and counseling to caregivers caring for an aging loved one or friend. Caseworkers meet individually and confidentially with caregivers to assess the individual's needs of the care recipient and assist in developing a plan for care for the unmet needs. Phone consultation and home visits are also available.

Medical Coverage
The Senior Resources Department is a recognized HIICAP (Health Insurance Information, Counseling and Assistance Program) providing services to residents of Colonie. The goal of this program is to provide unbiased information, counseling and support to seniors and the disabled and/or their caregivers in identifying, understanding and accessing appropriate and affordable health insurance coverage to meet individual needs.

HIICAP Counselors are available to counsel and advise on the following programs:

For persons 65+, blind or disabled, who have income of $800 for individuals or $1,175 for couples and resources of $14,400 for individuals or $21,150 for couples, and persons under 65 who meet Home Relief budget rules. A burial fund of $1,500 per person is allowed. There is also a community spouse allowance when the other spouse is institutionalized. The community spouse can keep up to $2,898/month and resources of $74,820 (or spouse's share up to $115,920).
Medicaid Spend Down
For those 65+, blind, or disabled, who have incurred medical expenses equal to or greater than their surplus income amount or have pre-paid their surplus income.

Persons 65+ that are eligible for Social Security or Railroad Retirement Benefits, or those who purchase coverage or have been disabled for 24 months will receive coverage for hospitalization, some skilled nursing home or home care or hospice (with deduction). Part B covers 80% for physicians, outpatient test and durable medical equipment, and is paid for by a monthly premium, plus a deductible.

Medicare Prescription Drug Program (Medicare Part D)
Medicare prescription drug coverage provides enrollees of Medicare A or B with a prescription drug benefit. Seniors continued to be perplexed by the various prescription drug plans offered, comparing their options and ultimately choosing a plan that best met their indivudal needs. Our case workers are extremely skilled in the many facets of the Medicare D, Medicare health plans, and how they interface.

Medicare Savings Program
This program helps low-income Medicare beneficiaries with the costs of their Medicare premiums, and sometimes their co-insurance and deductibles that Medicare beneficiaries pay out of pocket. New York State and the federal government help fund this program, but it is administered through your local Department of Social Services Medicaid Office.

Medicare Supplemental Insurance
Those on both Part A and B Medicare coverage may obtained a Medical policy to cover the other 20%. Information and applications regarding secondary insurance and Medigap policies are available through our office.

New York State Elderly Prescription Drug Assistance Program (EPIC)
EPIC is a New York State prescription assistance program for senior citizens enrolled in a Part D plan. EPIC provides secondary coverage for Medicare Part D and EPIC covered drugs purchased after any Medicare Part D deductible is met. To be eligible you must be 65+, enrolled in a Part D plan and meet the income guidelines for individual: $35,000, and couple: $50,000. Elderly Pharmaceutical Insurance Coverage(EPIC)

Social Security
Any individual that is 62+ and has contributed an eligible amount into the system can receive monthly checks based on prior employment amounts withheld. Amount is variable according to age, and if still employed.
Social Security Online

Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
This is a monthly cash benefit for persons 65+, blind or disabled, who live alone and have a very low income, with resources of $2,000/individual or couple/$3,000 and need assistance to help meet expenses. Amount depends on income and living arrangements.
Social Security Online

New York State School Tax Relief Program that provides an exemption from school property taxes for owner-occupied, primary residences for senior citizens 65 or over. For more information about STAR please see the Town Assessor's Web page. Applications must be received by March 1.

Veteran's Real Estate Exemption
The Assessor's Office has all the information and forms needed to apply for this veteran's benefit.

The weatherization program provides a comprehensive energy audit to determine if any cost effective measures can be made to improve heating efficiency and energy consumption. The program is available to those 60 and over and who meet the same eligibility requirements as HEAP. You may own a home, trailer or an apartment building of four units of less. You can apply for this benefit during our Benefit Assistance Program that is held on the second Friday of each month. Appointments are encessary, please contact our office directly to schedule an appointment at 459-5051, ext. 2.

Benefit and Financial Assistance Available
1) Benefits & Entitlements
2) Home Assessment
3) Legal Assistance through Albany County Department for Aging
4) Medicare and Health Insurance Counseling
5) Notary Public

NYS Attorney General’s Prescription Drug – Search and compare the prices for 150 commonly prescribed drugs so you can get the best price for your prescription. Website also provides links to public and private programs that offer discounted or free medications.

Adult Care - Names, addresses and type of facility, as well as recent inspection reports.

Nursing Home – Provides detailed information about past performance of every Medicare and Medicaid certified nursing facility.

Home Health Care Agency – Provides information on Medicare certified home health care agencies including phone numbers, covered services and quality measures about how well they provide care for some of their patients.