The Social Security Office in Quincy will be closing March 31.
A press conference was held Tuesday morning at the Gadsden County Senior Center on Lasalle Leffall Drive in Quincy to discuss ways to try and stop the closing.
According to County Commissioner Brenda Holt who spearheaded the meeting, she has not been able to get a lot of information about the closing, other than federal spending cutbacks.
She said that U.S. Senator Bill Nelson, US Congressman Steve Southerland and US Senator Marco Rubio had been contacted about the closing and recommended that those present at the meeting call their representatives as well.
Her concerns about the closing was the hardship placed on local residents because once the office is closed, the nearest facilities will be in Marianna and Tallahassee.
She said over 10,000 people in the county draw Social Security benefits.
County Commission Chairman Eric Hinson said this will be a huge blow to low income residents.
Because transportation was such an issue to local residents, he said this will place an unfunded mandate on local governments.
Hinson added that there is now an hour and a half wait time in the Tallahassee office.
A fact sheet about the local office was distributed at the meeting and included some of the following facts:
• Walk-in traffic at the Social Security Office averages about 54 people a day.
• Although Social Security has services available online, many seniors are not comfortable using the Internet.
Rick Davidson, attorney for the Gadsden County Sheriff’s Office, said that Sheriff Morris Young had made contact with the three federal representatives that generated a letter from Senator Bill Nelson.
Nelson, who serves as chairman of the special committee on aging, said he took this closing very seriously.
“I am troubled by the impending closure of a field office in Quincy, Florida,” he wrote in a memo to the commissioner of the Social Security Administration (SSA) on March 11.
He asked if the SSA had taken into consideration the impact of the closure and the hardship it will pose for beneficiaries.
Holt asked that people contact their federal representatives and voice the opposition to the closing.
Those phone numbers are: Senator Nelson, (202) 224-5274; Senator Marco Rubio, 202-224-3041; and Congressman Steve Southerland, (202) 225-5235.