Meeting of the Board of Regents | May 2009
Amendment to the State Plan for
Vocational Rehabilitation Services and Supplement
for Supported Employment Services Program
Federal Fiscal Year 2010
New York State Education Department
Office of Vocational and Educational Services for
Individuals with Disabilities
Summary of Amendment to the State Plan for Vocational Rehabilitation Services and Supplement
for Supported Employment Services Program
Federal Fiscal Year 2010
State Plan Process
The Rehabilitation Act, as amended, requires that New York State prepare a State Plan that informs the public of the Office of Vocational and Educational Services for Individuals with Disabilities’ (VESID) goals, priorities and performance in providing vocational rehabilitation and supported employment services to individuals with disabilities in New York State. This document, entitled State Plan for Vocational Rehabilitation Services and Supplement for Supported Employment Services Program, Effective July 1, 2001, was previously submitted and approved by the Rehabilitation Services Administration (RSA). The Rehabilitation Act further requires that each state annually amend its approved State Plan in specific areas as requested. The Amendment to the State Plan consists of specific attachments that must be updated annually as required by RSA. The content and format of the Amendment to the State Plan are based on the most recent guidance provided by RSA. The Federal Fiscal Year 2010 State Plan continues to be an amendment to the original document since the Workforce Investment Act has not yet been reauthorized.
VESID, in conjunction with the State Rehabilitation Council (SRC), developed the Amendment to the State Plan for Vocational Rehabilitation Services and Supported Employment Services Program, Federal Fiscal Year 2010. The previous year’s Amendment to the State Plan (October 1, 2009) was used to solicit input and recommendations from the public on planned activities related to the vocational rehabilitation of persons with disabilities for the next year.
The public comment period regarding the State Plan amendments extended from December 22, 2008 through February 13, 2009. As part of the State Plan development, VESID solicited public comment on fostering interagency partnerships for people with disabilities through three public meetings. Discussion questions focused on ways to improve interagency coordination and employment outcomes during challenging economic times. VESID requested public comment on changes to policies related to employer-based services such as on-the-job training and supported employment, as these topics relate to the content and implementation of the State Plan.
To notify and inform the public about the meetings on the State Plan, VESID emailed flyers that gave specific details on the theme of the State Plan public meetings, the meeting dates, meeting times and locations. The flyers were sent to consumers, community agencies, schools, independent living centers and support groups. VESID also utilized the newsletters, faxes and the internal communication processes of several community rehabilitation providers and associations to advertise the public meetings.
VESID further advertised the public meetings through the VESID website. Using Internet access, VESID created an interactive public meeting web page that was accessible to the public seven days per week, 24 hours per day. The public meeting web page allowed individuals to review the public meeting themes, questions and background information and to electronically post their comments. This year only one comment was received through this method, which is much less than in previous years. However, we did receive a greater number of detailed comments, particularly from the Independent Living community, through the firstname.lastname@example.org email box.
The public meetings were designed to provide ample opportunities for participants to review and discuss their ideas about VESID’s State Plan, policies, future direction, employer based services, collaboration with VR participants and the provision of employment supports. At each of the four meetings, VESID provided a brief presentation on the State Plan and provided data and information related to the theme questions. VESID staff facilitated the discussion, but public participants remained free to offer comments or recommendations on any part of the State Plan and its process.
The comments and recommendations received during the public comment period were reviewed for inclusion into VESID’s Amendment to the State Plan. Comments received did not directly alter the Amendment. Many comments, however, do help to inform policy development. The public comments are being shared with VESID leadership and the State Rehabilitation Council for consideration.
Amendment of the State Plan: Required Attachments
The following attachments describe VESID’s plans, policies and activities in a number of required areas as part of this Amendment. The sections of the Amendment to the State Plan for Vocational Rehabilitation Services and Supplement for Supported Employment Services Program, Federal Fiscal Year 2010 include:
Summary of Input and Recommendations of the State Rehabilitation Council; Response of the Designated State Unit; and Explanation for Rejection of Input or Recommendations: Attachment 4.2(c)
Summarizes the advice of the State Rehabilitation Council (SRC) on the State Plan, policy development and general comments. VESID’s responses to SRC are also included.
Cooperation with Agencies that are Not in the Statewide Workforce Investment System and with Other Entities: Attachment 4.8(b)(1)
Describes VESID’s efforts to work cooperatively and to coordinate services with public entities that are not part of the Statewide Workforce Investment System.
Coordination with Education Officials: Attachment 4.8(b)(2)
Describes VESID’s efforts to facilitate the transition of students with disabilities from school to post-school employment at the statewide and local levels.
Cooperative Agreements with Private Non-profit Vocational Rehabilitation Service Providers: Attachment 4.8(b)(3)
Describes VESID’s efforts to develop effective working and contractual relationships with the network of non-profit community rehabilitation providers throughout the State.
Comprehensive System of Personnel Development (CSPD): Attachment 4.10
Describes VESID’s activities that ensure an adequate supply of qualified rehabilitation professionals in conformance with its CSPD. The CSPD calls for VESID to utilize the highest national standard, Certified Rehabilitation Counselor (CRC), as the goal in recruitment and retention of counselors.
Annual Estimates of Individuals to be Served and Costs of Service: Attachment 4.11(b)
VESID estimates that, during Federal Fiscal Year 2010, 39,400 individuals with significant or most significant disabilities will become eligible for VESID services. This is a significant increase from previous years.
Goals and Plans for Distribution of Title VI, Part B Funds (Supported Employment): Attachment 4.11(c)(4)
This attachment indicates that VESID plans to continue to fund supported employment services utilizing Federal VIB and other funds.
Evaluation and Report of Progress in Achieving Identified Goals and Priorities and Use of Title l Funds for Innovation and Expansion Activities: Attachment 4.11(e)(2)
Describes VESID’s progress in achieving the goals and priorities, as required by regulation and agreed to with the State Rehabilitation Council.