ALEDO — State Rep. Daniel Swanson, R-Alpha, was in town Friday to call on officials and visit Brookstone of Aledo assisted living home.
The tour of the 66-apartment, senior care facility, was arranged by Jason Speaks, who is manager of Policy for Leading Age Illinois, Springfield, an advocacy group for aging and senior issues and policy.
“We try to bring the state senators and representatives to the facilities in their district so they can see and meet people in these communities that they represent,” Speaks said. “When they are voting on something that affects senior care, it helps them make an informed decision. Every year we do over 75 legislative visits throughout the state.”
Swanson, elected last November, replaced Rep. Don Moffitt in the 74th District.
Swanson asked Dustin McDonald, the facility’s recently appointed executive director, “How much does the state owe you?” That opened the door for McDonald to discuss how his corporate office manages to work with the delayed payments.
“This is real,” Swanson said. “By asking about debt, and I do it often, it gives me ammunition in Springfield. I want to thank Jason for inviting me. Visits to communities like this help me as I grow in the 74th District.”
Swanson chatted with some residents, and met local celebrity and former Aledo Mayor Tommi Greer, 101.
“On my first day on the job, Tommi grilled me for two hours about how I intended to run my budget,” McDonald said. “The main point about Brookstone is we have private apartments with private bathrooms and showers. It is all inclusive, meals, medication, housekeeping, laundry and everything is provided for with one monthly fee. We don’t have the restrictions of other places. Its like a big house and residents can come and go as they please.”
Swanson planned to tour Genesis Medical Center of Aledo, and meet with Mercer County Board Chairman Joe Vann later in the morning.
So How much does the state owe Brookstone? $220,000 and it’s eight months late. McDonald said when it comes, the whole amount is caught up, and corporate just deals with it until it does.