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TMCNet:  Public Asked to Answer Questionnaire Regarding Hearing Equipment in City Commission Chambers

[January 28, 2013]

Public Asked to Answer Questionnaire Regarding Hearing Equipment in City Commission Chambers

(Targeted News Service Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) NORTH PORT, Fla., Jan. 28 -- The city of North Port issued the following news release: The City of North Port is encouraging residents to fill out a questionnaire to gauge public interest in having an advanced audio hearing system installed in the North Port City Commission chambers at City Hall to aid the hearing impaired.


The technology the City is considering, called a hearing loop or T-coil system, has been in use for decades in Europe and is now making its way into public venues in the United States. The system wirelessly broadcasts audio directly to the wearer of a hearing aid or cochlear implant. All new hearing aids being sold are capable of receiving the audio, and approximately 80 percent of hearing aids now in use have the capability.

During a City Commission meeting at 6 p.m. on Monday, January 28, 2013, there will be a presentation made by Mr. Ed Ogiba, president of the Hearing Loss Association of Sarasota County. The City plans to seek a grant that would pay for the installation of this equipment in the City Commission Chambers. The questionnaire is being offered to collect data for the grant application.

Hard copies of the questionnaire was distributed at the January 14th City Commission meeting and will be distributed again at the January 28th City Commission meeting. Hard copies also will be available at other public locations in the City, including the front desk of City Hall, the Morgan Family Community Center, the George Mullen Activity Center, and at the North Port Family Service Center. Residents can also fill out the questionnaire online at the City's new citizen engagement website,YourNorthPort.com.

Currently, 58 venues in Sarasota County have a hearing loop system. A system was recently installed in the North Port Performing Arts Center thanks to a Selby Foundation grant awarded to the North Port Performing Arts Association (NPPAA).

Sarasota County has the highest incidence of hearing impairment in the country with more than 60,000 people (approximately 16 percent of the population) having some degree of loss. The rate of hearing impairment among Sarasota County seniors is also the highest in the nation.

For more information, email Stan Frank, Grants and Environmental Coordinator, at sfrank@cityofnorthport.com or call him at (941) 429-7234.

TNS MD66 130129-4182152 61MariaDonald (c) 2013 Targeted News Service

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