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MESSAGE FROM THE EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR

When does "old age" begin? The answer varies. There is no set age when a person reaches "old age" or becomes a "senior citizen. However, the age requirements do vary by federal and state programs and benefits and usually are established by legislative action. Specific information on eligibility for senior programs can be obtained by calling the Office.

Since 1900, the percentage of Americans 65+ has more than tripled. Among all the 50 states, New Jersey ranks 9th in the number of citizens 65 years of age or older.

Also available in the county to help support continued independence are 14 independent adult retirement communities,51 senior apartment complexes, 16 assisted living residencies, 2 shared living residences and one continuing care retirement community that help to reduce premature institutionalization.

In the Senior Housing Task Force report to the Board of Chosen Freeholders, a vast majority of the seniors surveyed indicated a desire to maintain their independence and continue to age in place for as long as possible by remaining in their own community. This reinforces the fact that provision of home and community based support services are vital since 76% of the older adult population in the county own their own homes and 24% are living alone. Also available in the county to help support continued independence are 11 independent adult retirement communities, 47 senior apartment complexes, 15 assisted living residencies, 2 shared living residences and one continuing care retirement community that help to reduce premature institutionalization.

Our office is committed to facing the challenge of assisting the rapidly growing senior population in the years to come, and will continue to seek ways to enhance and expand programs through public-private collaboration.