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Gubernatorial Candidates Outline Plans To Assist Elderly

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) - Gov. Ernie Fletcher rolled out a plan
Wednesday aimed at helping Kentucky's fast-growing elderly
population spend their "golden years" at home.

Fletcher proposed spending an extra $15 million in the next
two-year state budget on such programs as Meals on Wheels, adult
day care and home care.

The governor also proposed a caregiver tax credit for people
providing in-home care for low-income relatives who are 60 or older
and are diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease.

Fletcher said the upfront costs would be significantly less than
the expense to care for people in nursing homes. And older
Kentuckians would enjoy a higher quality of life, he said.

"True healthy living encompasses not only our physical health,
but also our ability to live and participate freely, independently
and with dignity in ... our own homes," he said.

Fletcher, a Republican, is seeking a second term in the Nov. 6
election. His Democratic challenger, Steve Beshear, wants to
"rebalance" Kentucky's long-term care system so people have more
choices in deciding their own care, Beshear spokeswoman Vicki Glass
said.


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