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LOUISIANA DEVELOPMENTAL DISABILITIES COUNCIL

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LOUISIANA DEVELOPMENTAL DISABILITIES COUNCIL Powered By Docstoc
					            LOUISIANA DEVELOPMENTAL DISABILITIES COUNCIL
                            October 19, 2006
                              MEETING

8:30 A.M.                                                                  Cook Conference Center
                                                                  Baton Rouge, Louisiana

1.    GREETINGS AND INTRODUCTIONS

      A.    Lynette Fontenot, Chairperson of the Council, welcomed everyone to the meeting. Ms.
            Fontenot stated that there are forms on the table for anyone who would like to address the
            Council. Time is allowed at the end of the meeting for people to speak for five minutes
            each. Ms. Fontenot reminded those present that Council Bylaws do not allow for proxy
            voting; anyone representing a Council member cannot vote on any issue.


      B.    MEMBERS PRESENT                                  C.    MEMBERS ABSENT

            Jeanne Abadie
            Jared Armstrong                                          Robin King
            Sam Beech                                                Shelia Madison
            Donna Breaux                                             Debbie Schilling
            Sharon Dufrene                                           Godfrey White, GOEA
            Lynette Fontenot
            Kathy Kliebert, OCDD
            Billie Ruth Kvaternik
            Kay Marcel
            Willie Martin
            Ida Mialaret                                     D.      STAFF PRESENT
            Johnnie Morris
            Nanette Olivier, DOE                                     Robbie Gray
            Jerry Phillips, BHSF                                     Gracie Haggard
            Linda Pippins, OPH                                       David Martin
            Matt Rovira, GODA                                        Kandi Smith
            Lois Simpson, AC                                         Vince Walker
            Marian Vigo                                              Sandee Winchell
            James Wallace, LRS
            Phil Wilson, HDC


      E.    GUESTS IN ATTENDANCE

            Donna Ancar - Guest of Augustina Lorenzo
            Cindy Arceneaux - Project PROMPT
            Yvonne Bell - FHF of Acadiana
            Susan Berry - OPH
            Laura Brackin - LSU Health Sciences Center
            Anna Brown - Guest of Johnnie Morris
            Ursula Brown - Early Steps
            Dora Chandler - Guest of Lynette Fontenot
            Kim Detillier - Bayou Land FHF
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            Sheryl Doga - Guest of Lynette Fontenot
            Jeannie Doiron - Bayou Land FHF
            Mark Ford - GODA
            Belinda Grant - Guest of Billie Ruth Kvaternik
            Frances Hilburn
            Mary Jacob - FHF of GNO
            Ruth Kennedy - Bureau of Health Services Financing
            Jamee Klipstein - The Arc of Louisiana
            Robert Levy - Office of Mental Health
            Augustina Lorenzo - Guest of the DD Council
            William Payne - Office of Mental Health
            Cheryl Sheffield - Governor’s Office
            Mary Tonore - Governor’s Office of Elderly Affairs
            Nathaniel Ward - Guest of Jared Armstrong
            Johniece Whitehead
            Martha Whitlock - FHF of NWLA
            Robert Wilson - SILC


2.   MINUTES OF JULY MEETING

     Ms. Fontenot entertained a motion to accept the Minutes from the July meeting.

     Motion Passed - Moved to accept minutes. Willie Martin. Seconded by Sam Beech.


3.   CHAIRPERSON’S REPORT – Lynette Fontenot

     Lynette Fontenot discussed the meetings and activities she has been involved in since the July
     meeting and the following issues:
        • Governor’s Bill Signing
            On July 26th, Lynette Fontenot, Kay Marcel and Sandee Winchell attended the signing of
            Senate Bill 746 by the Governor. Senator Sharon Weston Broome presented the bill to the
            Governor. Senator Sharon Weston Broome and the Governor were both thanked for their
            support in passing this very important legislation.
        • Site Visit
            At the July meeting of the Act 378 Sub Committee, concerns were raised regarding person-
            centered services being properly provided by the contractor. On August 16th Lynette
            Fontenot, Kay Marcel, Martha Whitlock, and David Martin made a site visit to INCS in
            Shreveport. The site visit determined the person-centered services were being properly
            provided but there was a problem with documentation. The person-centered plans need to
            be more individualized and ways to improve the documentation were discussed. Ms.
            Marcel will report more on this in her Act 378 report.
        • Executive Committee Meeting
                    On August 18th, the Executive Committee held a conference call to discuss the
                    need for a Conflict of Interest Policy. Conflict of Interest Policies from other state
                    Councils were reviewed and it was decided that the Texas and South Dakota models
                    would be used as guidelines for a draft Policy. Jeanne Abadie agreed to draft a
                    Policy for the Council.
                    The Executive Committee also held a conference call on September 22 to review
                    the conflict of interest draft. The Committee made a few revisions and approved the
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            draft included in members’ packets. Ms. Fontenot thanked Ms. Abadie for her
            excellent work on the draft. This will be discussed under new business.
            Early Steps Program - The Committee discussed concerns about the Early Steps
            program as it relates to family cost participation and eligibility. The Council is
            pursuing a meeting with Dr. Cerise to discuss these concerns. Other agencies and
            representatives who are involved with this program will be asked to participate in
            the meeting with Dr. Cerise.
            Housing Strategy - The housing strategy in the Council’s plan under Objective 11.2
            was discussed. Ms. Abadie expressed concern about use of the funds for consulting
            and technical assistance for a housing developer within the allotted time. She and
            Ms. Winchell proposed using the funds for rental subsidies for people exiting
            institutions if the state is awarded the Money Follows the Person (MFP) Grant.
            These subsidies would allow the state time to get a commitment from the Louisiana
            Housing Finance Agency and local housing authorities to use HOME dollars to
            continue these rental subsidies. The Committee approved the modification of the
            strategy.
            Executive Director of Families Helping Families - The Committee reviewed the job
            description of the Executive Director of Families Helping Families of Louisiana
            submitted by their Board of Directors. Minor language changes were recommended
            and the job description was approved.
•   Stakeholders Meeting
    Since DHH is applying for the MFP Grant, Stakeholders meetings were held throughout
    the state. Ms. Fontenot attended the one in Baton Rouge. The purpose of the meeting was
    to provide input about transition from an institution. Stakeholders gave input on the
    supports and services needed, how to educate the individuals and families about transition
    and how to provide assistance to those who choose to move. The grant application process
    was also discussed.
•   National Inclusive Schools Week and Disability Awareness Week
    Ms. Fontenot mentioned she is on the Disability Awareness Week Ad Hoc Committee.
    The National Inclusive Schools and Disability Awareness Weeks will be December 4th
    through December 8th. This event was so successful last year, the same contest theme was
    decided to be used again this year: Celebrating disability - open up your mind and
    community. The awards ceremony will be December 7th at the Cook Conference Center on
    the LSU campus. Ms. Fontenot ask members to please mark their calendars and plan to
    attend this special event.
•   Waiver Slots
    On September 29th Lynette Fontenot, Kay Marcel, Kathy Kliebert, Laura Brackin and
    Sandee Winchell attended a meeting with Senators Tom Schedler and Willie Mount.
    During a Senate Health and Welfare Committee meeting last session Senator Schedler was
    openly supportive of, and continues to support more waiver slots to reduce the waiting list.
    Senator Schedler stated he will do his very best to find a recurring and permanent source of
    revenue for the waiver to reduce the waiting list. Senator Mount was also very supportive
    and agreed to work with Senator Schedler.
•   NACDD Conference
    Last week, Lynette Fontenot, Dora Chandler and Kandi Smith attended the NACDD
    Conference in Pittsburgh - What's the Point? Currents and Countercurrents. The purpose of
    the conference was to focus on a common goal between Disability Rights groups to find
    common ground among each group’s different agendas in order to get one universal voice
    on disability issues.
            On Monday the session From Disability to Possibility was presented.
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Dr. Patrick Schwarz was the Keynote Speaker and spoke about true-life stories and
experiences of people he helped in the community. He challenged the attendees to
be advocates to help reform and make changes in their communities so inclusion
will be a reality. The stories were funny, very inspiring and motivating.
The concurrent session Ms. Fontenot attended was on Emotional Intelligence and
Organization Leadership and Advancement. This session explained how emotional
intelligence is needed in organizational leadership and advancement. It is obvious
how emotional connection works in our own Council. Everyone on the Council is
emotionally tied to the mission to improve the quality of life for all individuals with
disabilities.
The conference celebrated the 35th anniversary of the DD Act during lunch. As
part of the celebration a slide presentation was presented to show how the lives of
individuals with disabilities have improved with the help and through the efforts of
DD Councils. After the celebration an awards ceremony was held that was very
nice. All of the recipients were very deserving of the awards. We were especially
happy that Craig Blackburn from Baldwin received an award for his leadership and
advocacy for individuals with disabilities. He makes Louisiana proud.
One of the afternoon speakers discussed advocates who formed a corporation in
their states rather than waiting for Wavier services. Other government programs, for
example the Food Stamps Programs, were used to provide services. Also,
assistance was solicited from businesses and churches in the community and a
network of families was formed to take turns providing supports to one another.
This is a different approach the Council should be aware of.
The last event of the day was a one-woman play based on the life of Ilene. Ilene is
the mother of three children and because she had seizures, her husband had her
placed in an institution. She remained in the institution 30 years and is now living
in the community. The play included slides and excerpts from a book written about
Ilene’s story. The title of the book is On the Outside. The book also included
stories about other individuals who were institutionalized and now live in their own
communities. Ms. Fontenot bought one for the council.
On Tuesday morning a seminar about working with Public Television to influence
Public Opinion - Able Lives was presented. It illustrated how segments are
produced and how to work with public television stations. This is certainly one way
to educate the public about disabilities and how important inclusion is.
The concurrent session Ms. Fontenot attended was Independent Monitoring for
Quality of Life, a Five year Retrospective. This session covered data collected from
people living on their own with supports. Individuals, family members and
interested citizens were surveyed. Focus was on quality of life, satisfaction, dignity,
respect and rights, choice of relationships and inclusion. Outcomes of 80 to 90
percent positive improvement were reported.
The last session Ms. Fontenot attended was a panel discussion about DD advocacy -
Building Relationships and Educating Policy Makers. Can we do that?. The focus
was to stress the importance of keeping legislators on both the state and federal
levels informed of the mission of the DD council. It is very important to have a
good rapport with the legislators. The session gave examples of how this can be
accomplished. In La. we have many things in place to do this, but we need Council
members to build relationships with all our legislators. This cannot be stressed
enough. Council member participation is vital for successful legislative sessions
and getting the funding needed for additional supports.
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            Ms. Fontenot stated that she is thankful to have been able to attend the conference. It is
            always reassuring to her to see so many individuals determined to improve the quality of
            life for others.
        •   Executive Committee Meeting
            The Executive Committee met yesterday morning and is recommending the following.
                     The Council begin the practice of sending new contractors and grantees a short
                     statement saying, as a collaborator with the Council, all materials and
                     correspondence related to the project funded by the Council must be written in
                     People First Language. A one-page information sheet on People First Language will
                     be attached. The Committee also instructed Ms. Winchell to call the Arc of St.
                     Charles and discuss offensive language the organization used in the grant proposal
                     the Council funded.
                     The Committee also recommends the Council initiate a Legislative Advocacy Plan
                     whereby Council members are divided into teams by the regions they represent to
                     visit legislators in their regions. The teams would initially visit the members on key
                     legislative Committees: The House and Senate Health and Welfare Committees,
                     the House Appropriations Committee, and the Senate Finance Committee.
                     Members would then visit as many other legislators in their region as possible.
                     Council members would provide legislators information about the Council and our
                     legislative agenda and begin to develop a relationship with them. The staff will
                     provide members with a Council fact sheet, talking points on the legislative agenda
                     and a letter with other information to leave with the legislators. If there is only one
                     Council member in a region, that member can contact the LaCAN leader from the
                     region, and the leader could accompany them on their visits. As part of this plan,
                     the Committee would like the staff to call Council members to remind them to carry
                     out a LaCAN action.
                     Finally, the Committee recommends the Council adopt a Legislative Agenda that
                     includes.
                              Finding a recurring source of revenue for waiver services.
                              Funding additional waiver slots for next fiscal year.
                              Increasing rates for waiver services to give direct support professionals a
                              wage increase.
                              Funding 142 additional cash subsidy slots.
                              Implementing the Family Opportunity Act.
                     These issues will be discussed under new business for member discussion and
                     input.

     This was followed by a discussion.


4.   EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR’S REPORT - Sandee Winchell

     Council members were given the opportunity to ask questions concerning the Executive Director’s
     Report mailed to them prior to the meeting.




     Ms. Winchell discussed the following:
        • Membership
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    Ms. Winchell stated that she contacted the Governor’s Office and was told the pending
    appointments are on the Governor’s desk for her approval. The individuals proposed for
    membership are:
            Augustina Lorenzo
            Trudye Jones
            William Payne
            Teressa Stallion
    Another appointment is Dr. Sue Berry who is replacing Linda Pippins. Ms. Pippins is
    retiring from State Government this year. Ms. Winchell gave a special welcome to
    Augustina Lorenzo and William Payne who are joining us for the first time at this meeting.
•   Staff
    Ms. Winchell said that she would like to take some time to commend her staff. She stated
    that she and the Council have such an awesome staff and they do such a wonderful job.
            David Martin, Deputy Director
            David works behind the scenes so much, he does all of the budget work and what
            seems like an endless request for reports and budget information the Division of
            Administration and DHH throw at us almost on a daily basis. Ms. Winchell stated
            that Mr. Martin is really her right hand man and he does an excellent job.
            Kandi Smith, Program Manager
            Kandi wrote and produced the Council’s 2005 Annual Report provided to you this
            morning. It is absolutely excellent. She also wrote and submitted the 5-year Plan to
            the feds who mentioned how wonderful it was and how much they enjoyed reading
            it.
            Vince Walker, Program Specialist
            Vince provides wonderful support to our LaCAN Leaders and Families Helping
            Families.
            Robbie Gray, Program Specialist
            Robbie is our contract person among many other things and does a great job.
            Gracie Haggard, Secretary
            Ms. Winchell said Gracie does everything, and Ms. Winchell could not do what she
            does without Gracie and the support she provides to Council members.
    Ms. Winchell stated that this is just the tip of the iceberg and she wanted to publicly thank
    the staff for all they do.
•   Early Steps
    Ms. Winchell mentioned the continuing concerns with the Early Steps program. The
    Council has written several letters expressing those concerns. The Executive Committee
    also decided to call a meeting of other advocacy and stakeholder organizations to develop
    recommendations for Dr. Cerise regarding family cost participation and eligibility. These
    are the two most pressing issues that need to be highlighted to him. The meeting with
    advocacy and stakeholder organizations was successful and several recommendations were
    developed. A meeting with Dr. Cerise is scheduled for next Thursday. A brief description
    of the recommendations are:
            Family Cost Participation
            Suspend implementation of Family Cost Participation immediately. The cost
            statements are scheduled to be sent to families at the end of October. It was hoped
            the meeting with Dr. Cerise could have been scheduled sooner, but his calendar is
            extremely tight because of the Health Care Redesign Collaborative. Suspension of
            Family Cost Participation would allow time for research to be conducted on the
            following:
                     The percent of the Louisiana population falling in each income level
                     The Cost Participation plan payments in Louisiana compared to other states
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                             How Cost Participation structure was established in other states
                             The effectiveness of the current demonstration project
                             Alternative cost saving measures that could be implemented in the Early
                             Steps program
                             The possible impact of the Health Care Redesign on the Early Steps
                             program
            Based on the information learned from the research, a new system of Family Cost
            Participation that is fair, equitable, and reasonable could be designed and consistently
            implemented across the state if the data shows it is warranted.
                    Eligibility
                    The organizations also recommend the current eligibility should be retained and
                    another level of eligibility added for children considered to be borderline and who
                    do not meet the current eligibility requirement. Also, an advanced evaluation by an
                    interdisciplinary team and a second tier review by the Early Steps Administration
                    should be considered for children considered to be borderline.
                    Quality
                    A system of training should be established, and all evaluators should receive an
                    initial eight hours of training on the evaluation tool. Trainings should also be
                    provided semi-annually to address turnover.
        •   Direct Support Professional (DSP) Wages
            Ida Mialaret will discuss this topic in the Self-Determination/Community
            Inclusion/Housing Committee Report. Ms. Winchell said that she knows many members
            are concerned about the DSP shortage, particularly the crisis situation in the Greater New
            Orleans area, and reported the Council is working to address this issue. She wanted to
            bring it up because she did not want members to think this issue was being ignored.
            Parents and individuals with disabilities have repeatedly brought this to the Council’s
            attention and the Council has been working for months to address it. One way to address it
            is to have it included in the Redesign Collaborative, which was actually recommended by
            Charles Castille and Roxanne Townsend at DHH. The Council’s advocacy was successful
            in having it included in the Collaborative Plan but unfortunately it does not have any of the
            federal money attached to it. The Council also recommended an emergency rate increase
            for the Greater New Orleans area so that providers could pay higher wages to compete with
            McDonald’s and Burger King.

            This was followed by a discussion.

            Ms. Winchell reported the current IFS waiver rate is $14.00 and she expects the increase
            would be $16.00. It was hoped DSP’s would receive more than a $2.00 increase. Kathy
            Kliebert will discuss more about this in her report.
        •   Master Copy of Council Member Address List and Disability Groups
            Ms. Winchell distributed the master lists of Council Member Addresses and Disability
            Group memberships for members to make any necessary updates. Ms. Winchell asked
            members to initial to the left of their name if the information is correct.

     This was followed by a discussion.




5.   TREASURER’S REPORT – Jeanne Abadie
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     Jeanne Abadie discussed the budget reports included in the Council members’ packet. The first is
     the final close out report for the 2006 State Fiscal Year Budget. The $154,588 remaining surplus
     is federal funds that will not be lost and can be used by the Council for projects in the future. Also
     included in your packet is the budget report for September 2006 for the current state fiscal year and
     so far the SFY 07 budget is on target.

     David Martin reported the September 2006 report shows that in the first quarter the Council’s
     contractors are beginning to implement some of their contracts. Mr. Martin asked Council
     members to note Council year-to-date expenses in the 3rd column are $175,675. The budget
     balance is $1.2 million or 2.5 percent of the total budget allocated. Over the fiscal year this will
     increase to meet the year-to-date expenses of the Council. Mr. Martin mentioned that if Council
     members looked at the closeout report for the 2006 State Fiscal Year Budget, the major problem
     with the surplus involves the contractors not drawing down all of the funds from the contracts.
     Contractors left a total of $125,545 on the table. That is 8 percent of the total budgeted amounts
     for contracts. That money should have been utilized. For the total budget established for state
     fiscal year 2005-2006, 6.725 percent was not expended. Because of the federal DD grant, the
     Council has two years to obligate and three years to liquidate these funds. $654,588 will be
     liquidated in the federal fiscal year 07, 08, and 09. Ms. Winchell has brought this issue before the
     Executive Committee and requested Committee action to contract for other types of services.

     Donna Breaux stated that she and Lynette Fontenot will meet with the Executive Committee and
     come back to the Council with recommendations.

     David Martin discussed the 2007-2008 Budget request for $2,198,450. It includes $25,202 of
     additional federal expenditures the Division of Administration added for interagency transfers.
     Additionally, a $482 increase to related benefits was added by the Division for increases in Group
     Benefits insurance costs.

     Mr. Martin stated that the United States Postal Service will increase postage rates from $.39 to
     $.42 in May 2007.

     This was followed by a discussion.


6.   COMMITTEE REPORTS

     A. MEMBERSHIP – Donna Breaux

        Donna Breaux stated that Ms. Winchell had mentioned there were some new members at the
        meeting and welcomed them. She mentioned that Debbie Seaux had resigned because of an
        employment opportunity. The Membership Committee, Jeanne Abadie, Lois Simpson and
        Donna Breaux met with Sandee Winchell by conference call and decided to submit Teressa
        Stallion’s name to the Governor’s Office as a new Council member. Ms. Stallion is a Partners’
        graduate.

        This was followed by a discussion.

        Ida Mialaret asked about Debbie Seaux taking a position with Families Helping Families, a
        Council funded agency, without a two year waiting period. Ms. Winchell stated that when Ms.
        Seaux went to work with Families Helping Families she checked to make sure Ms. Seaux
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  would not be paid with Council funds and Ms. Seaux did not take a position that was funded
  with Council money.


B. ACT 378 SUB COMMITTEE – Kay Marcel

  Kay Marcel gave the Act 378 Sub Committee report. The Sub Committee reviewed the Act
  378 agencies’ expenditure reports for the programs they administer. The Sub Committee also
  received reports from the state agencies to ensure the guiding principles of Act 378 are being
  adhered to in the implementation of the programs they oversee.
  • Developmental Disabilities Council
      Ms. Marcel reminded the Council that at the last Council meeting a contract with INCS of
      Northwest Louisiana was approved for the Supported Living program with conditions. The
      site visit Lynette mentioned in her Chairperson’s Report regarding person-centered services
      being properly provided also discussed those conditions with INCS. They agreed to ensure
      the conditions were included in the supports provided to the individuals by the program.
      Additionally, the site visit committee met with one of the individuals being supported about
      some specific concerns he had regarding the services and supports he was receiving. He
      reported the issues had been resolved and he was very complimentary of the program. The
      individual works at the Independent Living Center in Shreveport and made an offer to
      provide training for the staff at INCS on person centered supports. INCS was happy to take
      him up on that offer.

      The Sub Committee reported at the last Council meeting about concerns with the
      Federation of Families for Children’s Mental Health’s Act 378 program. Several regions
      are not currently being served by the Federation in any way. At the Council’s direction,
      David Martin met with the staff of the Federation and in his report to the Sub Committee he
      provided a plan the Federation has developed to address those regions. Essentially the plan
      calls for the use of staff from adjoining regions to work in those regions to identify and
      train volunteers to provide ongoing support in those regions. The Sub Committee reviewed
      the plan and was pleased the Federation had a rather comprehensive plan to address the
      issue. The regions affected are 4, 5, 8, Northshore, and Jefferson Parish Human Services
      Authority. David Martin will continue to monitor this very closely
  •   Office for Citizens with Developmental Disabilities
      One of the major changes discussed at the last Council meeting was changing the Cash
      Subsidy Program waiting list from a statewide waiting list to a regional waiting list. The
      Sub Committee received information it will be an ongoing process. OCDD hopes to have
      the change completed by July, 2007, and will attempt to do it in the most equitable way
      possible. OCDD has frozen any slots that become vacant and hopes to distribute them
      among the regions to help equalize the regional waiting lists. OCDD’s plan is to distribute
      slots based on the population of a region, but work will continue as they have formed 3
      committees to continue to address this. A Memorandum of Understanding Committee has
      been formed to develop a MOU in conjunction with the regional offices, Authorities and
      Districts. The purpose of the MOU is to develop indicators that must be adhered to in
      order to maintain the integrity of the program. Ms. Marcel asked anyone on the Council
      interested in serving on one of these sub committees, to let Ms. Winchell know. Currently
      there are advocates and family members participating in this discussion. Ms. Winchell
      serves on the MOU Committee and Kay Marcel and Martha Whitlock each serve on a
      Committee. Additionally, OCDD has included funding for an additional 142 slots for the
      Cash Subsidy program in their 2007-2008 budget request. Support for this request is
      included in the proposed Council legislative agenda.
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  •   Office of Mental Health
      The Committee received fiscal reports from the Office of Mental but Robert Levy was ill
      and not able to attend the meeting. However the reports show the programs’ expenditures
      are in line.
  •   Louisiana Rehabilitation Services
      The Committee received a report from LRS on the Supported Living Program in the
      Southern part of the state provided by Resources for Independent Living. LRS did site
      visits to the provider on June 26th, June 27th and August 21st. Recommendations from the
      site visits were sent to the provider on August 24th. A meeting was held with the provider
      on October 16th to follow up on the recommendations and RIL reported the
      recommendations had been complied with. Examples are:
               Two staff members were released and they have been replaced with qualified
               personnel
               The needs of all the individuals being served have been identified and they are in
               the process of being met
               Four of the recipients are receiving obvious services as of this week
               The documentation and records have been improved
               RIL is now providing a wide array of services
      Additionally, concerns identified at the October 16th meeting, will result in LRS amending
      the contract to address:
               Developing policies and procedures when they close out a case.
               Private closure of any person receiving services
               The contract will phase in a reduction in the number of people served to 16 – 17, to
               be in line with the budget of the contract. Currently RIL is serving 25 – 30 people
               and the budget does not support that number of people in an adequate and
               appropriate way.
               The need to increase the number of home visits. The Coordinator will visit at least
               once a month
               Better documentation in terms of fiscal expenditures
               Follow-up on service delivery and actions received
      The amended contract would be presented to the providers for agreement and signatures.
      LRS plans to follow-up and monitor at least quarterly. Paige Kelly is the new staff person
      monitoring the contract and she reported she spoke individually with seven people during
      the June site visits. Ms. Kelly spoke to them recently and has received positive responses
      from all of them that they are getting more services and they have been contacted more
      frequently by Resources for Independent Living staff. This contract will be monitored
      closely by LRS and the Sub Committee.

  This was followed by a discussion.


C. SELF DETERMINATION/COMMUNITY INCLUSION/HOUSING – Ida Mialaret

  Ida Mialaret discussed the Committee actions:
  • People First
             Anissa Rubin, Becky Zito and Laura Brackin reported on People First. Ms. Rubin
             distributed People First brochures disseminated to local chapters. She said they
             held a membership drive and are working on chapter development and leadership
             training. The project is working to develop the Region 1 Chapter, provide support
             to begin reorganizing and rebuilding the Region 7 Chapter and provide Region 4 the
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           same assistance in the future. The project has developed Good Practice guidelines
           for the local chapters and advisors to be tested soon by the Ruston Chapter
           Becky Zito presented training specifics and gave highlights from the training
           manual. She also mentioned a presentation made by Denise Dupont: “Never Judge
           a Book by its Cover.”
           Laura Brackin spoke about the administrative aspects of People First and said that
           People First will soon have a website that can link websites for local chapters.
           There will be a People First State Conference in Baton Rouge on January 26-27.

    Jeanne Abadie recommended that People First develop a legislative agenda.
•   Partners in Policymaking
           Partners in Policymaking will graduate 16 people in August. Applications for the
           2007 session have been slow in coming and the deadline has been extended to
           November 15th.
           Sharyn Scheyd, the Partners Coordinator, had to resign due to illness. The search
           for a new coordinator has begun and a job announcement will be posted on the DD
           Council website soon.
•   LaCAN
           The LaCAN kick-off is planned for November 8-9. Speaker of the House Joe Salter
           will be the guest speaker. He will listen to LaCAN’s legislative agenda and provide
           input on how to effectively address legislators and advocate with them. The
           Legislative Agenda includes:
                   Finding a recurring source of revenue for waiver services.
                   Funding additional waiver slots for next fiscal year.
                   Increasing rates for Individual and Family Supports in the Waiver.
                   Funding 142 additional cash subsidy slots.
                   Implementation of the Family Opportunity Act.
           LaCAN members and leaders are visiting legislators in their home offices. People
           on the waiting list are also visiting their legislators and asking that a source for
           recurring revenue be identified to address the waiting list.
           There are leader vacancies in Regions 1, 9, 10 and one is expected in Region 2.
•   Families Helping Families
           Karen Scallan has been hired as the Executive Director of FHF of LA. and will
           begin working on October 24th.
•   DSP Issues
           Sandee Winchell discussed the rate increase for the Greater New Orleans area to
           give DSPs a wage increase included in the Concept Plan presented to the Health
           Care Redesign Collaborative, and a $2 rate increase included in OCDD’s budget
           request for the NOW Waiver, Children’s Choice Waiver and for ICFs/DD.
           Phil Wilson added that DSPs need training. The Human Development Center
           (HDC) was allowed to change the focus of their initial contract to train supported
           living providers in person-centered supports when not enough agencies could be
           identified to participate. HDC has now created 10 training modules designed to
           train the trainers for DSPs.
           HDC plans to develop more modules and wants to place them on the LA/DSP.org
           website. Each module is intended to take an hour or less and have a short
           assessment. The first training session for the North will be at a Ruston library and
           the meeting for the South will be at the OCDD Office in Baton Rouge. The
           meeting in Baton Rouge is scheduled for November 1st and both meetings will be
           from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
                                                                                                          12

       •   Housing Technical Assistance
                 The Committee discussed the contract with the Arc of Iberia for $31,100 for the
                 pre-development costs and application fees for four proposed housing projects in
                 New Orleans, Algiers, Abbeville and Lake Charles. The contract is to provide 160-
                 180, 1 to 3-bedroom units. Jeanne Abadie reported that 20% of these units will be
                 completely accessible and all units will follow universal design and will be “green”
                 (environmentally friendly). David Martin said that each unit would have a subsidy
                 for people with disabilities who earn 20% or below minimum income and would
                 pay 30% of their income towards rent and utilities per month. Southern Tier for
                 Environmental Living (STEL) is matching the Council’s contribution and also
                 providing free technical assistance and consultation. DHH will have a single point
                 of entry to refer people to these units, as the complexes will be fully integrated and
                 inclusive.

       This was followed by a discussion.


     D. HEALTH/EDUCATION/EMPLOYMENT COMMITTEE – Sharon Dufrene

       Ms. Dufrene discussed the following issues:
       • Status of FFY 2006 Plan Activities
                 Library Project
                 McNeese State University has started Phase 2 of the Library Project.
                 Inclusive Recreation
                 The contract with the Arc of St. Charles has begun. The purpose of this project is to
                 enhance the day camp program at the St. Charles Recreation Department.
             The Executive Committee suggested to the Council that contracts must use People First
             language and must be aware of the Council’s mission.
                 Governmental Internship Program
                 An Advisory Council was created and they have met. The Advisory Council will
                 add new members and get community leaders involved. The next meeting is
                 November 17th.
       • Inclusive Schools Week
                 The Visual Arts/Performance Art Contest Awards Ceremony will be in the Abel
                 Room of the Cook Conference Center, December 7, 2006 at 1:30 p.m. Nanette
                 Olivier sent correspondence to the public schools and Christy Cormier, the
                 LATEACH Coordinator with Families Helping Families of Southwest La., helped
                 coordinate the awards ceremony. DD Council members will receive an email
                 regarding the Contest and are asked to support the contest in their communities.
                 The artwork is at the DD Council office and any Council member can go by and
                 vote.
       • High School Redesign
             The Committee is recommending the Council send a letter to the BESE in reference to
             the High School Redesign Commission and the need for multiple high school diplomas.

           This was followed by a discussion.


7.   UNFINISHED BUSINESS - None
                                                                                                           13

8.   NEW BUSINESS

     A. CONFLICT OF INTEREST POLICY

       Ms. Breaux referred members to the handout in the Council members’ packets of a Draft
       Conflict of Interest Policy. The Executive Committee met and reviewed policies from other
       Councils across the nation. After the meeting Jeanne Abadie took the lead and graciously
       agreed to develop a draft. The Committee then met again and edited the draft. What the policy
       essentially says is that as a Council member you are responsible for making sure you inform
       the Council if you suspect there may be a conflict of interest. The draft is provided for each
       Council member to review.

       Motion             -   Moved to accept the Conflict of Interest Policy. Willie Martin.
                              Seconded by Ida Mialaret.

       This was followed by a discussion.

       Ms. Marcel questioned the conflicting language on resignation in B. and C. on the last page of
       the document. She stated that in B. the member is “expected to resign” and in C. the member
       “shall immediately resign.” David Martin stated that the Governor would not remove an
       appointee who has been appointed to a term of office. Ms. Winchell explained that in the past,
       Council members were asked to resign. The policy states the person found to be in conflict of
       this policy and not voluntarily resign will be reported to the Ethics Commission. Ms. Vigo
       asked if the member would be notified in writing to resign. That could be added to B. “shall be
       notified in writing and expected to resign.” Ms. Winchell said it would be added “in writing”
       anywhere in the document asking Council members to do anything and in C. the wording will
       be changed to “expected to resign”. A section will also be added to say: “A Council member
       who is suspected of being in violation and refuses to voluntarily resign shall be reported to the
       State Ethics Commission”. Sharon Dufrene raised the question of Council members not being
       able to receive stipends from Families Helping Families. Ms. Breaux suggested tabling the
       motion so the Committee can review the Conflict of Interest Policy and revise the language.
       The draft Policy will be brought back to the January 2007 meeting as Old Business. A new
       draft Policy will be mailed prior to the meeting.

       Motion Passed      -   Moved to table the Conflict of Interest Policy, revise the language and
                              bring it back to the January 2007 meeting as Old Business. Willie
                              Martin. Seconded by Sharon Dufrene.


     B. COUNCIL’S LEGISLATIVE AGENDA

       Ms. Breaux stated the Proposed DD Council Legislative Agenda is being distributed. The
       Executive Committee met and discussed the items on the Council’s Legislative Agenda. The
       Committee recommends the Council supports:
                 Finding a recurring source of revenue for waiver services
                 Funding the following additional waiver slots for next fiscal year
                             200 Children’s Choice Slots
                             100 Supports Waiver Slots

                              800 NOW Waiver Slots
                                                                                                    14
                          100 Emergency Waiver Slots
             Increasing the rates $2.00 an hour for Individual and Family Supports (IFS) in the
             NOW and Children’s Choice Waivers to increase DSP wages statewide
             Funding 142 additional Cash Subsidy slots to bring the waiting list in every region
             to July 1st, 2001
             Implementation of the Family Opportunity Act

  Motion            -   Moved to accept the Council’s Legislative Agenda. Kay Marcel.
                        Seconded by Marian Vigo.

  This was followed by a discussion.

  Ms. Marcel stated that she believes Emergency Waiver Slots are an easy thing for legislators to
  fund and not fund the other slots so the Council would be at risk of losing all the slots. Ms.
  Breaux said the language can be changed to Needs Based Waiver Slots to take out the word
  “Emergency.”

  Ms. Marcel called the question. Seconded by Willie Martin. The Council voted by a show of
  hands to close the discussion.

  Motion Passed     -   Moved to approve the Council’s Legislative Agenda as amended. Kay
                        Marcel. Seconded by Willie Martin.


C. LEGISLATIVE ADVOCACY PLAN

  Ms. Breaux stated in 2004 before Hurricanes Katrina and Rita the Council implemented an
  Advocacy Plan whereby Council members visited with legislators in their districts and the staff
  provided talking points for the members making these visits. Ms. Breaux stated that the
  Council is being asked to approve a Plan for the 2007 Legislative Session that would mimic the
  2004 Plan and again have Council members make legislative visits. The Executive Committee
  would also like the approval for staff to be allowed to call Council members to remind them
  when there are LaCAN Legislative Actions and ask for their participation.
  The major areas to discuss in the legislative visits are:
             Finding a recurring revenue source for waiver slots
             Funding 800 additional NOW Waiver slots
             The $2.00 wage increase for DSPs

  Motion Passed     -   Moved to accept the Legislative Advocacy Plan as recommended by the
                        Executive Committee. Kay Marcel. Seconded by Willie Martin.

  This was followed by a discussion.

  Lynette will appoint a team captain for each region to coordinate the meetings with Council
  members.

  Ms. Winchell stated the following items will be mailed to the Council members prior to their
  meetings with legislators:


             A list of legislators needing to be visited in regions.
                                                                                                          15
                   A packet of materials to assist members that will include:
                      1. All the instructions needed.
                      2. A fact sheet containing Talking Points on the Council’s Legislative Agenda
                      3. A letter that can be left with the legislators.
                      4. A report to send back with the results of your visit.

        Ms. Winchell said Council members’ main responsibilities are to be a resource to policy
        makers.

        Billie Ruth Kvaternik said People First might want to do it too.


     D. COMMITTEE RECOMMENDATIONS

        Ms. Breaux stated that the Health/Education/Employment Committee wanted to appoint an ad
        hoc committee to develop a document, either a letter or position paper, to state the Council’s
        concern about the fact that there is only one diploma in the State of Louisiana and that all
        children need to have other options. Christy Cormier with LaTEACH will work with the ad
        hoc committee.

        Motion Passed        -   Moved to approve as stated. Marian Vigo. Seconded by Sharon
                                 Dufrene. Motion passed with 1 abstention.


9.   INCLUSIVE SUMMER DAY CAMP – Jeannie Doiron, Bayou Land FHF

     Jeannie Doiron, Project Coordinator/Support Parent with Bayou Land Families Helping Families
     in Region 3, thanked the Council members for allowing her to give a presentation on this project.
     Ms. Doiron said she attended a Tri State Conference July 6th sponsored by the DD Council in
     Mississippi and discovered many other groups on Inclusive Recreation started their grassroots
     efforts with no budget. This is the same way the Vision of Inclusive Recreation was started in
     Region 3. For example, the Star Power Theater was started by FHF staff members who were not
     satisfied with the theater options for children with disabilities. They met with the individual in
     charge of the summer camps at Nicholls State University and created an inclusive recreation camp,
     which was listed in Nicholls 2004 Summer Camp Program. The camp is directed and supported
     by Bayou Land Families Helping Families and is inclusive to all children. The camp began with
     19 children the first year and last summer 33 children were enrolled.

     The Project began October 1st and 3,000 needs surveys were disseminated through the Center’s
     quarterly newsletter; throughout the community; and in workshops, presentations, and committee
     meetings. The camps chosen were: Sports and Activities and Arts and Crafts. The Sports and
     Activities Camp was held June 5-9, 2006 for ages 5th –12th; and the Arts and Crafts Camp was held
     June 19th-23rd for ages 6-8 and 9-12. The Sports and Activities Camp was not a good choice
     because over 80 children signed up and there was too much transition in a four-hour period. The
     Arts and Crafts camp ran smoothly with about 12 children per class and no transition. The biggest
     achievement is that Nicholls State University had real systems change. The Director of the
     Recreation Program at Nicholls expressed a positive attitude towards people with disabilities
     participating in the future and was glad to be a part of the project. She also looks forward to
     working with FHF again in the future.
                                                                                                          16
                                                                                       th
      FHF had money left in the budget, so they held a Community Dance September 9 and 170 people
      attended. The dance floor was crowded from the first dance until the last hour. Two Disability
      Awareness trainings were given within the dance and information was given out about LaCAN and
      Partners in Policymaking. FHF plans to continue disability awareness presentations throughout the
      region. The Thibodaux Parks and Recreation Department has also expressed a desire to participate
      in an inclusive recreation project with FHF in the future.

      This was followed by a discussion.


10.   COUNCIL MEMBER REPORTS

      A. ADVOCACY CENTER – Lois Simpson

         Lois Simpson submitted a written report, mailed in the Council member packet prior to the
         meeting.

         Ms. Simpson also reported on the following:
                Ms. Simpson mentioned one very exciting piece of news the Advocacy Center (AC)
                received about two weeks ago. Before Katrina the AC nominated Kay Marcel for the
                Blue Cross/Blue Shield of Louisiana Angel Award. These Awards are presented on an
                annual basis to people who have contributed to the children of the State of Louisiana.
                Ms. Marcel will be honored at a dinner at the Capitol House Hotel in Baton Rouge on
                November 13th. Ms. Marcel will probably be asked to give an acceptance speech
                before an audience of people who do not know about disabilities’ issues and this is an
                opportunity to educate people on the issues that are so important to the Advocacy
                Center and the Council. Ms. Simpson said she is very proud of Kay and there is no one
                more deserving of this award than she is. Ms. Simpson said that this event is by
                invitation only and Steve, Joel, Sandee Winchell, herself, their husbands, and the
                president of the Board of the Advocacy Center are the invited guests.


      B. HUMAN DEVELOPMENT CENTER – Phil Wilson

         Phil Wilson submitted a written report, mailed in the Council member packet prior to the
         meeting. Dr. Wilson also reported on the following:

         Dr. Wilson said that he has been in Louisiana approximately 10 years and this is truly a most
         exciting time because he feels things are actually happening because different advocacy
         organizations are working together with so much success. HDC is very involved in the
         Recovery School District and also has a statewide project in the area of autism. HDC is
         partnering with LRS on a supported employment project, has projects with the Advocacy
         Center underway and had several projects with the DD Council with a new one beginning
         soon. HDC has also worked with the Governor’s Office of Disability Affairs on several
         projects that are coming to an end, but expect to continue to work with them in the future.

         This was followed by a discussion.
                                                                                                           17
11   STATE AGENCY REPORTS

     A. DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION – Nanette Olivier

       Nanette Olivier discussed the highlights of the written report, mailed in the Council member
       packet prior to the meeting.

       In addition, Ms. Olivier reported on the following:
               The Department had a State Improvement Grant (SIG) for five years. $1.1 billion per
               year was received during those five years.
               The Department issued an RFP for the Low Incidence Consortium Teacher Personnel
               Preparation Program. This is a teacher training program for teaching students with
               visual impairments, hearing impairments or students with significant disabilities. The
               project will be funded up to three million dollars for a three-year period.
               Several months ago, the Department established a work group to address the need for
               appropriately certified and highly qualified teachers for Special Education and training
               teachers to work in inclusive settings. The work group will set up regional consortiums
               consisting of: at least one university representative, at least one LEA representative,
               and at least one respective family from that region. These partners will work under an
               interagency agreement to support schools with inclusive practices and teacher trainer
               programs
                The Louisiana State Performance Plan included a strategy to form a group of
               stakeholders to review the state’s education policies, procedures and practices. The
               group will look for possible barriers to effective inclusive practices and performance of
               students with disabilities.

       This was followed by a discussion.


     B. OFFICE FOR CITIZENS WITH DEVELOPMENTAL DISABILITIES – Kathy Kliebert

       Kathy Kliebert discussed the highlights of the written report, mailed in the Council member
       packet prior to the meeting.

       In addition, Ms. Kliebert reported on the following:
               Support Intensity Scale (SIS) and LA PLUS – In the report, the first stage of the project
               was discussed. The second stage has started and the Office is evaluating the individuals
               on the waiting list and using data collected from the needs assessments to begin
               developing formulas for resource allocations. It is hoped that the Support Intensity
               Scale will give the Office the tool needed to have an objective instrument for some
               level of resource allocation. The second stage of the project is expected to be
               completed in March.
                Louisiana Health Care Redesign Collaborative – This is not in the report because it
               started in July and originally OCDD did not have much of a role in the redesign.
               However, OCDD and other offices in the Department have now been included in most
               of the committees listed in the report. There were two areas of the health care redesign
               that OCDD focused on:
                       Short-Term Priorities – The issue of Direct Support Wages and health care
                       shortages in the New Orleans area was emphasized to make sure the shortage in
                       direct support staff was recognized. The final plan will be presented to
                       Secretary Levitt tomorrow and a recommendation for a Direct Support Wage
                                                                                            18
        increase in the New Orleans area was included. However unlike some of the
        other recommendations for health care professional positions, there was no
        money tied to it. What was included was that DHH would pursue the wage
        increase through their funding.
Living with Illness or Disability – OCDD used the same values and principles
developed as part of the Long Term Care Reform and asked that those values and
guiding principles be put into the plan. There are some basic principles that will be in
the concept paper that will be congruent with the Long Term Care Reform objectives.
As the Collaborative develops the concept of available homes in the New Orleans area
OCDD asked that there be a clear link with people who have specialties in
developmental disabilities. OCDD has a list of physicians and other specialists with
expertise in developmental disabilities and wants them to be linked to those medical
homes, so a person with developmental disabilities can get some reimbursement
through Medicaid. OCDD had a member on each of these committees.
Money Follows the Person (MFP) - The Office will be asking Secretary Levitt for
permission to move the provider fee into Home and Community Based Services so the
whole amount of money from the facility can be moved into the community to pay for
the person’s waiver services. This was followed by a discussion.
Rebalancing Initiative Grant – The Residential Options Waiver (formerly known as
Conversion Waiver), which includes more than just a conversion opportunity, will have
a stakeholder meeting next Wednesday, October 25th and some Council members have
been invited to attend. Jean Tuller has been contracted to assist with the development
of the Residential Options Waiver and will spearhead the stakeholder group. The MFP
Grant awards will be in January. The Office anticipates a planning period of
approximately 6 months.
Waiver Services
        The Office is continuing to try and integrate Waiver services into the regional
        offices. There are still some management issues to be worked out but efforts to
        develop a much more integrated office for Waiver services are underway.
        The Office received a renewal for the Waiver in July and there were some
        changes made as a result of stakeholder input, which will now be going into rule
        and policy. By January the effects of those changes should be seen. There are
        still other changes that need to be addressed in the Waiver and the Office is
        creating a new workgroup to work on paper reduction issues, billing issues and
        other issues still making the NOW Waiver difficult to manage.
Emergency Management – The Office has been working with the Office of Aging, DD
Council, the Advocacy Center and the Department of Social Services to try to
implement some of the lessons learned relating to people with disabilities at the
Emergency Management Conference. Some headway was made with the Red Cross as
they are allowing us to work with them on a training module to get their managers to
better understand how to work with people with disabilities, and the Red Cross is
allowing us to make some specific recommendations for their managers’ training.
Hopefully the Red Cross will operate differently in future emergencies. Additionally,
OCDD has been trying to work with the Governor’s Office on Homeland Security but
have not had much success
OCDD will be working with Toni Richardson to develop new plans for the next five
years for the large ICFs and will be looking very critically at each developmental center
and making recommendations for long term changes in the operation of those facilities.
                                                                                                     19
C. OFFICE OF MENTAL HEALTH – William Payne

  William Payne stated that he appreciates the opportunity to be with the DD Council as a new
  appointee.

  Mr. Payne discussed the highlights of the written report mailed in the Council member packet
  prior to the meeting.

  In addition, Mr. Payne reported on the following:
          Redesign Collaborative – As part of that Redesign collaborative initiative mentioned by
          Kathy Kliebert, the Office of Mental Health also has representation on the Health Care
          Collaborative sub committees.
          A new initiative the Office has begun relates to an opportunity offered in the Deficit
          Reduction Act recently passed by Congress allowing states to amend their State Plan
          addressing Home and Community Based Services for individuals with disabilities.
          After review, the DHH Undersecretary interpreted that section to include individuals
          with serious mental illness. The Office has therefore developed a concept paper asking
          for the ability to amend the Medicaid State Plan to cover services in the community for
          individuals who are currently not covered by Medicaid. This will allow those
          individuals who may need these services to receive them. It will also allow the state to
          fund $.30 on the dollar to finance the option to cover these services. The Department
          of Social Services are also interested in this possibility.
          Permanent Supportive Housing – OMH is very involved in the process to address
          Permanent Supportive Housing for individuals with serious mental illness. The Office
          has included funds in the budget request for next year to address supportive housing for
          individuals with serious mental illness across the state as part of the Road Home Plan.
          OMH’s plan is to allow the approval of a percentage of housing to be set-aside for
          individuals with disabilities. The Office of Addictive Disorders, Office of Aging and
          Adult Services are also very much involved in that process.
          The Governor issued an Executive Order for a Comprehensive Plan to Access Mental
          Health Care services. The Department is the lead agency and this is a State Plan, not an
          OHM Plan. Community Forums will be held across the state to get public input on the
          plan. Community Forums will be held in Shreveport October 24th, Alexandria October
          25th, and Lafayette October 26th. Mr. Payne encouraged the Council to access their
          website about the forums.

  This was followed by a discussion.


D. OFFICE OF PUBLIC HEALTH – Linda Pippins

  Ms. Fontenot informed the Council that this is Ms. Pippins’ last meeting. A Certificate was
  presented to Ms. Pippins in appreciation of her contributions to the Council.

  Ms. Pippins expressed how she will miss being on the Council. She said that she thinks the
  Council is an excellent forum for communication and collaboration among all agencies and
  although the Council and her Office do not always agree, it gives her Office a better
  understanding of the issues individuals with disabilities and their parents face.
                                                                                                   20
Ms. Pippins apologized to the Council for not submitting her report in advance. She thanked
the Council office for giving Children’s Special Health Services temporary office facilities
after the hurricane.

Ms. Pippins reported on the following:
       Early Steps–Early Steps provides early intervention services to children from birth to 3.
              Early Steps received a 2006 federal grant award from the Office of Special
              Educational Services releasing the program from the requirement of reporting
              quarterly on non-compliant issues. The program has been reporting on this
              since the Office took over the program in July 2003.
              One of the major concerns is the Child Count, which decreased dramatically
              after Katrina and Rita, after the new eligibility was implemented in May and
              with the start of family cost participation. The Count has gone from a high of
              4,543 children in December 2004 to a low of 2,395 children in July 2006. The
              program has been very concerned about this and is analyzing data from after the
              storms. The federal bench mark is 2% of the population of children from birth
              to 3, which would be 4,177 children. Obviously the program is below the
              federal bench mark.
              The program is also working with the State Interagency Coordinating Council,
              looking at what may have contributed to this decline and has asked for
              recommendations for changes to the eligibility or family cost participation to
              increase participation in the program.
       Children’s Special Health Services (CSHS)
              Children’s Special Health Services has recently hired a new Special Health Care
              Needs Director, Susan Berry. Dr. Berry will direct CSHS, Early Steps, the
              Hearing, Speech and Vision Program and the Birth Defects Program. The
              Office is very excited to have her and she is uniquely qualified to lead these
              programs. She has a medical degree, a masters in public health, and is board
              certified in developmental pediatrics.
              CSHS is also working on an expansion of the program to incorporate care
              coordination into clinics in the aftermath of the storms. Many pediatric
              physicians have left the state. CSHS hopes to help families access health care
              and other services through Care Coordination in the areas where services are no
              longer available. CSHS has done a Pilot Project in Region 1 and will expand to
              other regions over the next two years.
       Council’s Recommendations about Early Steps
              The State Interagency Coordinating Council is the advisory Council that works
              with Early Steps and is made up of all stakeholders. The DD Council has a
              representative on the SICC. Early Steps encourages the DD Council to look at
              how much state support other states receive because the federal funding for Part
              C is very minimal. All states complain about being under funded because
              federal funding is not meant to fund the entire program, it is meant to be money
              to hold the system together. Other funding is necessary. Early Steps wants to
              assure the Council that the program did a tremendous amount of research and
              information gathering from other states before family cost participation or
              eligibility was established. When the program experienced the tremendous
              budget deficit year before last, the program curtailed all Public Relations
              activities and now is looking into how to again inform the public about the
              program and start identifying children. Early Steps has provided training on
              evaluation but realizes there is a need for more and they have included training
              into their plan for the next year.
                                                                                                       21

E. GOVERNOR’S OFFICE OF DISABILITY AFFAIRS – Matt Rovira

   Matt Rovira discussed the highlights of the written report, distributed prior to the meeting.

   In addition, Mr. Rovira reported on the following:
           Artwork will be displayed from the Visual Arts/Performance Art Contest for Inclusive
           Schools Week at the 2006 Governor’s Disability Community Action and Leadership
           Awards event.
           The Home Modification Program called Ramp-UP LA is in its informal planning stage
           and is in the process of contacting organizations that provide home modification to
           participate in the program. The goal is to create one application to allow the elderly
           and people with disabilities to apply for all the appropriate programs that have funds
           available for home modifications. Stakeholders include: LRS, the U.S. State
           Department of Agriculture, HUD, DHH, and Medicaid.
           Navigator Initiative
           The Navigator Program came to Louisiana after Hurricanes Katrina and Rita to assist
           and stabilize people to enable them to return to work. Over a year since the hurricanes,
           the Navigators are shifting focus more toward systems change, where program
           participants work to educate Career Development Centers on programs available to
           assist individuals with developmental disabilities. The Office is working with the
           leadership of the Department of Labor to assist them.

   This was followed by a discussion.


F. BUREAU OF HEALTH SERVICES FINANCING – Ruth Kennedy for Jerry Phillips

   Ms. Kennedy discussed the highlights of the written report, mailed in the Council member
   packet prior to the meeting.

   In addition, Ms. Kennedy reported on the following:
           The Bureau has a program called the Medicaid Purchase Plan. The Plan will allow
           people with disabilities to continue to receive Medicaid even when their assets are
           higher than the $2,000 limit in that program. Elaine Richard is the manager of that
           program.

   This was followed by a discussion.


G. LOUISIANA REHABILITATION SERVICES – James Wallace

   James Wallace discussed the highlights of the written report, mailed in the Council member
   packet prior to the meeting.

   In addition, Mr. Wallace reported on the following:
            A review the policies and procedures manual will take place to make it more consumer
           friendly.
           A director of Life Services has been hired
           The Office is considering several new initiatives across the state: Mentoring, the On the
           Job Training Program and the On the Job Evaluation Program.
                                                                                                          22
                LRS is involved with the Navigator group and Ramp-UP LA.
                The contract for the Supported Employment Continuous Improvement Project that Phil
                Wilson mentioned has finally been approved.
                The number of minimum hours for Supported Employment has been removed.
                We have collaborated with the Health and Science Center on a project to help people
                with disabilities through a disaster.
                Both David Martin and Matt Rovira participated in the site visit to RIL Monday and
                Mr. Martin has put in a lot of time on that project. Mr. Wallace said how much he
                appreciated that.
                LRS now has designated transition counselors across the state and several people in the
                state office that have retired.


      H. GOVERNOR’S OFFICE OF ELDERLY AFFAIRS – Mary Tonore for Godfrey White

         Mary Tonore reported on the following:
               Aging and Disability Information Station: The Station has resources which cover three
               areas of the state. More information can be found at www.laanswers.com.
               The Office has received a new grant to work with the Office of Aging and Adult
               Services to simplify access for the elderly to adult and disabled services, including
               Waiver services.
               The Older Americans Act has been reauthorized.
               All of the state area agencies are in the process of creating new area plans.

         This was followed by a discussion.


12.   ANNOUNCEMENTS

      Ms. Fontenot mentioned there are Partners in Policymaking brochures on the back table.

      Ms. Fontenot asked Council members to complete the Council Meeting Evaluation Form before
      leaving the meeting.

      Ms. Fontenot announced the next quarterly Council meeting will be held in Baton Rouge January
      17-18, 2006.


13.   ADJOURNMENT OF BUSINESS MEETING

      Motion Passed - Moved to adjourn the meeting. Willie Martin. Seconded by Ida Mialaret.

      The meeting adjourned at 3:46 p.m.

				
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