Spring 2019 - 60064 - PA 388K - Advanced Topics in Public Policy
Building an Intergenerational Metropolis: a Policy Research and Practice Seminar
Students will work together to establish an operational plan for affordable housing and intergenerational services, all conveniently located in one place, in one of Austin’s most needy areas.
Students will learn:
- How municipal government, specifically City Council implements an initiative;
- How Commission on Seniors provides guidance on Age-Friendly City Action Plan;
- How to Liaise with Austin and Travis County municipal government officials;
- How to develop and host a Third Eldercare Summit at the LBJ School with AustinUP, a community alliance committed to making Central Texas a place where older adults live full, engaged lives, to elevate the visibility of the innovative ways in which cities can serve as a catalyst for healthful aging; and
- How to gauge political viability and reciprocity.
Over the last three years, twenty-five LBJ students, have been involved in a $48,000 project that addresses a serious and growing problem in the City of Austin. Although the Mayor’s Taskforce stressed the need for easily accessible health care services and supports for Austin’s growing senior population, Austin’s senior population is outpacing health and social care capacity. In 2016, the City Council reaffirmed that observation by adopting a plan to address this problem and to bring about the objectives of the Imagine Austin Comprehensive Plan. To address this issue, Dr. Angel’s recent research focusing on the health and care arrangements of low-income seniors has culminated in a Report: “Young, Hip Austin is Getting Old: A New Experiment in Confronting the Challenge”, which describes an operational plan to establish a multigenerational day and wellness center at the RBJ Public Health Building, located at 15 Waller Street. In October, 2017, the Commission on Seniors recommended to City Council that they consider the RBJ Health Center as a potential location for a public-private partnership to establish a senior clinic and multigenerational wellness center http://www.austintexas.gov/edims/document.cfm?id=286425. The motivation of the resolution is related to the May 10, 2018 approval of the City of Austin to implement the Age Friendly Action Plan: https://austinup.org/city-of-austins-age-friendly-action-plan-is-officia....
This initiative recently received approval by City Council, led by Council Members Kitchen and Renteria, to provide Council direction to staff to pursue the implementation of the project, to officially dedicate the space, and to begin a lease agreement process. Specifically, the City of Austin has allocated a $250,000 budget for the RBJ building design and development of a public-private partnership for a wellness program consisting of a senior day center and social services, geriatric primary care, tele-behavioral health services, and child care all located in one place. The implementation of the project entails working with the City of Austin’s Public Health Department, Public Work’s Department, Economic Department, Real Estate Office, Assistant City Manager’s Office, and the new Director of the Age-Friendly City Action Plan as well as partners and foundations who have already provided letters of commitment and support (full list at https://repositories.lib.utexas.edu/handle/2152/65188).
The estimated cost of the facility renovation and the build out is $3.8 million and is based on a Proforma of the Program of All-inclusive Care for the Elderly in San Antonio, Texas. Two leading experts in municipal financing (Drs. Martin Luby and Michael Granof) have reviewed both the capital and operational funding. City Council and the Commission on Seniors would like us to work with them on the process of designating the funds for each programmatic component– for which the City has several sources.