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NEW DIRECTORS ORIENTATION May 16, 2011 Marty Exline Willie Gunther.

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Presentation on theme: "NEW DIRECTORS ORIENTATION May 16, 2011 Marty Exline Willie Gunther."— Presentation transcript:

1 NEW DIRECTORS ORIENTATION May 16, 2011 Marty Exline Willie Gunther

2 USE OF FUNDS  (1) In General (A)Required Activities. – Except as provided in subparagraph (B) and paragraph (6), any State that receives a grant under this section shall use a portion of the funds made available through the grant to carry out activities described in paragraph (2) State Level Activities and (3) State Leadership Activities. (B) State or Non-Federal Financial Support. A State shall not be required to use a portion of the funds made available through the grant to carry out the category of activities described in subparagraph (A), State Financing Activities (B),Device Reutilization Programs (C), Device Loan Programs or (D) Device Demonstrations of paragraph (2) State-Level Activities if, in that State-

3 COMPARABLE SUPPORT FROM OTHER THAN AT ACT FUNDS  (i) financial support is provided from State or other non-Federal resources or entities for that category of activities; and  (ii) the amount of the financial support is comparable to, or greater than, the amount of the portion of the funds made available through the grant that the State would have to expended for that category or activities in the absence of this subparagraph.

4 QUESTIONS TO HELP YOU DETERMINE WHETHER YOUR PROGRAM SHOULD CHOOSE COMPARABLE OPTION  Is the State Level Activity being conducted/provided by other than the AT Act Program comprehensive across age, disability and geographic areas of the state etc.?  Is the amount of funding for the activity comparable to or greater than the portion from the AT Act funds that would have been allocated for that activity?  Will you have sufficient data in either Access or Acquisition to meet performance measures?

5 THINGS TO REMEMBER WHEN CONTEMPLATING WHETHER YOUR PROGRAM SHOULD CHOOSE THE COMPARABLE OPTION CONT.  That the other entity that is providing a comparable activity is not required to provide data to RSA or your program and should not unless your program provides some amount of financial support to implement the program activities. This means more of a fiscal commitment rather than just an arrangement to buy their data.

6 STATE FLEXIBILITY  ``(A) In general._Notwithstanding paragraph (1)(A) and subject to subparagraph (B), a State may use funds that the State receives under a grant awarded under this section to carry out any 2 or more of the activities described in paragraph (2). A), State Financing Activities (B),Device Reutilization Programs (C), Device Loan Programs or (D) Device Demonstrations  ``(B) Special rule. Notwithstanding paragraph (3)(A), any State that exercises its authority under subparagraph (A)_ …``(i) shall carry out each of the required activities described in paragraph (3)(B); and …``(ii) shall use not more than 30 percent of the funds made available through the grant to carry out the activities described in paragraph (3)(B). Required State Leadership Activities (i)Training and Technical Assistance (ii) Public Awareness (iii) Coordination and Collaboration

7 THINGS TO THINK ABOUT WHEN DECIDING WHETHER TO CLAIM STATE FLEXIBILITY  If you flex out of providing one State Level Activity will you have sufficient data to report?  If you elect to flex out of two activities under the same category, either “Access or Acquisition,” what data will you have to report?  Your annual report to RSA is compiled into an Annual Report to Congress – what will happen if year after year your report shows your performance measures as “Not Met?”

8 60/40 VS. 70/30 State Level Activities:  60% is the MINIMUM you can spend on activities.  If less than 4 required activities are provided/conducted (claimed flexibility option) then you are required to allocate 70% of federal funding to remaining 2 or 3 State Level Activities.  You are allowed to spend 100% of your federal award on State Level Activities HOWEVER, you are still required to carry out State Leadership Activities somehow. State Level Activities:  40% is the MAXIMUM you can spend on activities.  30% is the MAXIMUM if you are implementing less than 4 State Level Activities.

9 WHAT DOES 5% OF THE 40% OR 30% FOR TRANSITION MEAN?  5% of 40% or 30% must be expended on Transition activities for students with disabilities, under IDEA and adults who are individuals with disabilities maintaining or transitioning to community.  If you spend less on State Leadership Activities you must still expend 5% of what would have been 40% or 30% of federal award on transition activities. For example: Total award is $400,000, 60% allocated on State Level Activities = $240,000, 40% allocated for State Leadership = $160,000 – 5% of the 40% allocated on Transition Activities = $8,000. Another example, Total award is $400,000 and you spend 80% on State Level Activities = $320,000 and 20% on State Leadership Activities = $80,000 your 5% for transition is still $8,000 since it is based on the 40% or 30% of total award.

10 CONSIDER DIRECT ALLOCATION TO GET TO 60/40 OR 70/30 SPLITS  Direct costs are those that can be identified specifically with a particular final cost objective such as the 4 State Level Activities and the 3 State Leadership Activities. Indirect costs are those that have been incurred for common or joint objectives and cannot be readily identified with a particular final cost objective, such as cost for administrative staff, copier, insurance, space.  Charges direct costs to the applicable cost objective State Level and State Leadership Activities. Costs which benefit more than one objective can be charged proportionately to each applicable objective/activity.

11 PURPOSE OF THE ADVISORY COUNCIL  is to provide consumer - responsive, consumer - driven ADVICE to the State for, planning of, implementation of, and evaluation of program activities, including setting measureable goals.

12 ADVISORY COUNCIL  Things outside of your control with respect to an Advisory Council:  Required Representation (51% individuals with disabilities or family members/guardian, Rep. from designated State Agency as defined by the Rehab Act, Rep from State Agency for the Blind if separate from Rehab Agency, Rep of CIL, Rep of Workforce Investment Board, and Rep of State Education Agency.  Advisory Council shall be geographically representative of the state and reflect the diversity of the State with respect to race, ethnicity, age, disability and be users of AT devices/services.  Whether appointed Advisory Council members actually show up to meetings and participate.

13 ADVISORY COUNCIL  Things within your control with respect to an Advisory Council:  Determining how much funding is available to support the Advisory Council meetings and activities.  Appointing other reps to the Advisory Council.  How often the Advisory Council meets. This may be determined by funding. But it might be better to pose the question to the Advisory Council to see how often they feel they should meet.  Whether meetings are in person, webinars or conference calls.  Establishing the Advisory Council’s policies or operating procedures.  If you already have a board with the required representation you do not need to have an Advisory Council.  Legislation dictates the State Level and State Leadership Activities – Advisory Council provides input into implementation, evaluation and goal setting of activities.

14 ADVISORY COUNCIL  Advisory Council is in statute – use that to get required representation appointed. Lead Agency and Governor’s Office might be your point of contact to make this happen.  You cannot force Advisory Council members to participate but as long as Advisory Council members have been appointed and you do all that you can to encourage their participation you will be in compliance with legislation. (Remember, you can lead the horse to water but you cannot make it drink.)

15 ADVISORY COUNCIL MEMBERS – DO THEY PARTICIPATE? Leading Advisory Council members to participate (or trying to make a horse drink):  Are the meetings value - added? Will members learn something they haven’t learned elsewhere?  Are there ample chances for members to participate in a meaningful way?  Do you provide any annual overview, stakeholder’s meeting, etc. to train and motivate your members?  Where do you find consumers to make up your 51% representation?

16 DEVELOPING PROGRAM POLICIES & PROCEDURES Policy Manual  A policy and procedures manual can save time and effort.  Time spent addressing a “new” situation is avoided.  Helps to avoid conflict and a potential for misunderstanding.  Provide continuity and consistency in decision making. Procedures Manual  A guide for leadership and a guide for continuity for new staff members & for succession planning.  provide a way to review existing programs and services to ensure needs are met.

17 STAFF SUPERVISION  Always hire staff that are independent, competent and fully grasp the responsibilities of the position.  Make staff responsible for reporting program data and activities to Advisory Council and others.  For remote staff, make sure they are fully equipped with programmatic and administrative equipment/software to implement their program activities.  Enforce time and effort reporting.  Provide for remote access to administrative server so data can be entered timely.  Conduct unannounced visits to observe trainings, presentations, demos etc.  Conduct unannounced follow-up calls to consumers receiving staff’s services.

18 SUBCONTRACTS  Consider Performance Based Model  Do not pay vendor upfront. A small amount for start up maybe necessary.  Design subcontract to have clearly defined deliverables and time lines such as: …Subcontractor is required to submit the data elements monthly, semi monthly, quarterly. Suggest not going with annual submissions of data. …Submit Monthly Expenditure reports to substantiate funding request, data reported and activities conducted. …Ensure subcontracts has an “out clause” for failure to produce data, deliverables and remember to adhere to time lines. …Require subcontractors to present data to the Advisory Council at least annually.

19 SUBCONTRACTS  Monitor Subcontract. Remember as a contractor you have the right to and responsibility to test or conduct follow up surveys on customers served by subcontractors. If follow up surveys are part of the agreed upon scope of work then you should conduct a sampling of a follow up survey on the services provided by the subcontractor to determine if the subcontractor is implementing the contract as agreed.  If necessary, rebid subcontracts as needed.  If you are an implementing agency make sure that your contract with the lead agency allows you to enter into subcontracts for specified services/deliverables.  Make sure you follow OMB Circulars requirements regarding subrecipient vs. vendor arrangements.  Remember, it is critical to determine whether outsourcing services will render the same or better results than implementing services in - house and which of the two is more cost efficient.

20 HOW TO SPEND YOUR FUNDING  Whether you control your funding or your lead agency controls your award you need to remember two words:  Obligate - To commit (money, for example) in order to fulfill an obligation. Liquidate - To pay off (a debt, a claim, or an obligation.  Things that are important to know: …Total award Amount. …How to allocate funds across State Level and State Leadership Activities. …Potentially operate on both a state fiscal year and a federal fiscal year. …Ensure total aware is liquidated or spent by September 30 th each year. …There is a 3 month close out from September 30, to December 31. …Complete or work with the staff at the lead agency to submit the SF-425 Form to RSA. …You have two years to spend each year’s award. So, if you under spend a contract or grant you may carry the funds into the next fiscal year. However, it is a requirement that you spend old funds first. …Become familiar with applicable OMB circulars.

21 EXAMPLES OF STATE IMPROVEMENT ACTIVITIES  Passing new legislation that increases access to for or funding for assistive technology.  Pass legislation that ensures information technology is accessible.  Work with State Board of Education which produces a positive change in local districts providing timely access to electronic textbooks as regular textbooks.  Increase the provision of AT services through State Agencies.  AT Training in incorporated for all new employee training at various agencies, hospitals etc.

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