The Kansas Silver Haired Legislature, a unicameral body of 125 seniors that advises and lobbies the official state Legislature on issues important to older Kansans, is preparing to hold elections for the SHL's next two-year term. Ada Bogart of Dodge City is running for Ford County SHL representative.
"I served as the legislator from 2007 till 2011," Bogart said. "And I helped get some very important legislaton to the Senate and the House."
Bogart worked to pass items such as the Silver Alert, provide two regional ombudsmen in the state, Grandparents as Caregivers Act, reinstatement of certain insurance policies and much more.
"I am a retired nurse, so health issues that relate to seniors are especially important to me," Bogart said. "I also think transportation issues are important. Especially for seniors who live in this area, where things can be located very far apart."
As the SHL for Ford County, Bogart would listen to concerns from senior residents, gather all ideas and pick the best, most beneficial three to present at the SHL regional meeting. The top three from that meeting are presented in Topeka at the state meeting. Finally, the top idea is made into a bill and presented to the actual Kansas House of Representatives or Kansas Senate, depending on which is appropriate.
"It's a lot of hard work before a bill can be presented," Bogart said. "But, legislators respect us and listen to what we present, because they know it has been well planned out."
Elections for the SHL will take place Thursday, March 14. Anyone 60 years of age or older, and registered to vote may vote in the election. Polling locations will be available at various senior centers in Ford County, and at Eisenhower Hall at Fort Dodge. You do not have to be a member of any senior center to vote.
"Serving on the SHL is a very interesting and enjoyable experience," Bogart said. "And I would appreciate your vote on March 14."
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