STATE OF NEW JERSEY
  New Jersey Division of Vocational Rehabilitation Services

       S     TATE
       C     OUNCIL

               Annual Report
                     FOR FISCAL YEAR 2011

  The SRC/DVRS Partnership Celebrates Accomplishments
        October 1, 2010 through September 30, 2011
New Jersey State Rehabilitation Council                      2011 Annual Report

Kathleen Wilson, Chairperson
Cathy Gacos, Vice-Chairperson
Thomas Baffuto, Treasurer

                                              December 29, 2011


As the Chair of the State Rehabilitation Council of the Division of Vocational
Rehabilitation, it is an honor to present our annual report for Fiscal Year 2011.

As I review the contents of the report, two areas stand out. In spite of significant
staffing challenges during FY 2011, the NJDVRS managed to surpass its
placement goals for the year and, at the same time, successfully manage a
multitude of diverse programs which contributed to this success. Equally
impressive is NJDVRS’s determination to continue its thoughtful dedication to
innovative approaches to vocational rehabilitation.

The State Rehabilitation Council of New Jersey is pleased to provide this report
and proud of the accomplishments of NJDVRS on behalf of the people it serves.
The SRC is confident that future challenges will be met with equal success, thanks
to the dedication of its members, DVRS staff and stakeholders.

Respectfully Submitted

Kathleen W. Wilson
Kathleen W. Wilson, Chairperson
NJ State Rehabilitation Council

New Jersey State Rehabilitation Council             2011 Annual Report

                             TABLE OF CONTENTS

          Beliefs, Mission, Function

          Membership, Officers, Committees, Resources

          Meetings, Training, Forums

          SRC Committee Reports

          Activities and Accomplishments

          Significant Issues

          Planned Activities for Fiscal Year 2011

          SRC State Plan Recommendations


          DVRS Offices & Contact Information

New Jersey State Rehabilitation Council                                2011 Annual Report

                                     SRC BELIEFS
As members of the New Jersey State Rehabilitation Council (SRC), we believe:
    That people with disabilities, like all people, have diverse strengths that must be defined
      and identified along many dimensions.
    That each person with a disability has value.
    In a public system of vocational rehabilitation that is responsible and accountable to those
      it serves and to those who fund it.
    In partnerships, affiliations, and linkages.
    That optimal results in rehabilitation depend on an equal partnership between consumers
      and the professional (service provider).
    That all consumers should be given enough information to make informed choices.
    That all people with disabilities are ultimately responsible and accountable for the
      choices they make.
    That all people with disabilities should have the opportunity to maximize their potential;
    That respect for all is critical to this process.
    That it is necessary to support, further, and exemplify diversity and multiculturalism
      within the disability community and the community at large.
    That the rights of people with disabilities should be advanced and protected.

                                     SRC MISSION
The SRC is a partnership of persons with disabilities, advocates and other interested persons. It is
committed to ensuring through policy development, implementation and advocacy that New
Jersey has a rehabilitation program that is not only comprehensive and consumer-responsive but
also effective, efficient and significantly funded. The SRC is dedicated to ensuring that persons
with disabilities receive rehabilitation services that result in employment.

                       SRC MANDATED FUNCTION
The SRC, on behalf of the community it represents, reviews, analyzes and advises the New
Jersey State Vocational Rehabilitation Program (DVRS) regarding the performance of its
responsibilities. Council goals and activities are set annually and are in response to both National
and State issues, as mandated by Section 105 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended.
The focus of Council goals and activities includes but is not limited to Consumer Satisfaction,
Statewide Needs Assessment, State Plan and Amendments, Policy, Extent/Scope/Effectiveness
of Services, Interagency Agreements and New Jersey's Employment programs.

New Jersey State Rehabilitation Council                              2011 Annual Report

Council Membership is in accordance with Section 105 of the 1998 Amendments to the
Rehabilitation Act and New Jersey Executive Order 110 and reflects a diverse range of disability
groups, geographical areas, racial, ethnic and gender groups. Each member is appointed by the
Governor of New Jersey. The Council represents a broad spectrum of individuals who are
concerned with the vocational needs of people with disabilities and who support the objectives of
the public rehabilitation program in New Jersey. As of 9/31/2011 representation on the Council
is as follows:

   Member                       Representation
   Tom Baffuto                  Advocate (Mental Organization)
   Greta Berdoe                 DVRS Customer
   Ruth Churchill               Advocate - Parent
   Cathy Gacos                  Business
   Vacant                       Business
   Jamie Hilton                 Advocate - Sensory
   Douglas Kruse                Advocate - Physical
   Jody Levinson                Business
   Lillie Lowe-Reid             Client Assistant Program
   Ellen Nalven                 Advocate (APSE)
   Nils Richardson              Community Rehab Program
   Michael Shultz               Business
   James E. Seath               Public Member
   Patricia Tomlinson           Vocational Rehab Counselor
   Kathleen Wilson              SILC Representative
   Walter Woodberry             DVRS Customer
   Nominee: Nick Gacos          State Workforce Investment Board
   Nominee: Carolyn Hayer       Statewide Parent Advocacy Network
   Nominee: Frank Herron        Vocational Rehab Counselor
   Nominee: Tom Jennings        Advocate - Physical
   Nominee: Janice Oursler      Vocational Rehab Counselor
   Nominee: Bob Haugh           State Education Agency
   Nominee: Jim Theberry        Advocate – Mental
   Nominee: P. Englebert        Community Rehab Program

    Steve Fishbein             Division of Mental Health Services
    Ed Sroczynski              Commission for the Blind & VI SRC
    Jennifer Joyce             Division of Developmental Disabilities

    Alice Hunnicutt            Director, DVRS

New Jersey State Rehabilitation Council                               2011 Annual Report

Membership Development

The full Council participates in identification of potential members appropriate to the beliefs and
mission of the SRC. Member attendance, vacancies, and upcoming term expirations are reviewed
during the February and March meetings with recommendations made to fill vacancies according
to the category the vacancy(s) represents. Special attention has been given to fulfill expiring
terms this year due in part due to compliance needs stemming from the 2010 RSA monitoring.
Nominations have been sent to the Governor’s office and the SRC anticipates several new
members. Nominations are made that represent compliance with Section 105 mandates; at least
half of the SRC membership is comprised of persons with disabilities who are not employed by
DVRS. A wide range of disability representation has been achieved.

Officer Elections

Officers are elected bi-annually at the SRC May meeting for a two-year term. Officers for FY’11
have been: Kathleen Wilson, Chair; Cathy Gacos, Vice-Chair; Tom Baffuto, Treasurer.


The SRC Chair, in conjunction with the Executive Committee, appoints committees annually to
meet federally mandated activities and SRC priority areas. Each SRC member is expected to
participate on a committee. The DVRS supports each committee by assigning a DVRS staff
member to provide information as requested.

Standing committees include:

      Executive Committee – Comprised of the SRC Chair, Vice-Chair, Treasurer and the
       DVRS Director as ex-officio.

      Evaluation & Consumer Satisfaction Committee – Activities include, but are not
       limited to, program evaluation activities and consumer satisfaction studies.

      Policy Committee – Activities include, but are not limited to, advocacy and education,
       policy and State Plan review, Administrative Code review, State Plan Public Hearings,
       Statewide Comprehensive Needs Assessment.

      Legislative Committee – Responsible for the review/monitoring of pending and current
       legislation, particularly with respect to impact on funding; suggest/develop legislation as

      Ad Hoc Committees, Task Forces, and Study Groups – Are created on an as needed
       basis by the SRC Chair. Non-Council members may serve on these groups, but the Chair
       of the group must be a SRC member. Ad Hoc Committees include:

New Jersey State Rehabilitation Council                              2011 Annual Report

       o A By-Laws Review Committee – Is appointed by the SRC Chair on even-numbered
         years to review and make recommendations to the full Council for needed revision.
       o A Membership Committee – Is charged with developing plans to bring membership
         into compliance with RSA mandates

       o State Employment & Training Commission (SETC) Disability Issues Sub-
         committee – Activities assist, educate and advocate for the New Jersey One-Stop
         System to be a barrier-free environment responsive to the needs of persons with

Resource Plan
The following DVRS staff provides support, attend, and participate in the activities of the
Rehabilitation Council: The DVRS Director attends all meetings and provides staff support to
the executive committee; the two Assistant Directors provide staff support to the legislative and
policy committees; the chief administrative analyst for the DVRS provides staff support to the
evaluation committee; and the Executive Assistant to the Director provides minutes for every
meeting and day-to-day requests that come from SRC members. Other DVRS staff members are
assigned as needed to support the Council and as appropriate to their area of expertise.

For the period of 10/1/10 – 9/30/11, a $38,000 budget was established for Council operating
expenses. The budget covered: quarterly and special meeting costs; annual planning summit;
member expenses to attend and participate in meetings and training; accommodations; training;
printing costs; fiscal agent budget administration; and miscellaneous funds needed to support
Council activities as appropriate. Council activities stayed within the allocated amounts.

                         COMMITTEE ACTIVITIES
Consumers Report Satisfaction with DVRS Services
The SRC Evaluation and Consumer Satisfaction Committee has implemented improvements to
the consumer satisfaction input and looks forward to the next fiscal year when it will be possible
to obtain a more detailed analysis of survey results. During FY 10 the SRC mailed surveys to a
sample of individuals exiting service in status 26 and 28 and compiled survey results in an
Access database.

A consultant with Monmouth University Polling Institute was engaged to analyze survey data for
the period of 2007-2009. The Executive Summary is a follows:
     Three-in-four (76%) respondents are satisfied with the DVRS services they received,
        including 38% who are “very satisfied.” Respondents express similar satisfaction levels
        with the information they gained from the counselor about DVRS services, their level of
        involvement in the Individualized Plan of Employment (IPE), and the outside service
        providers they were referred to.
     Satisfaction levels vary with employment status. About 9-in-10 (88%) respondents who
        have the same job they had before becoming a DVRS client are satisfied with the services
        they received, as are 8-in-10 (83%) respondents who found a job as a DVRS client. This
        compares to about 6-in-10 (57%) unemployed clients who are satisfied with DVRS.

New Jersey State Rehabilitation Council                              2011 Annual Report

      Two-in-three (66%) respondents are currently employed, with nearly half this number
       being employed full-time. Most employed respondents are satisfied with various aspects
       of their jobs, including their co-workers (93%), physical work environment (91%),
       supervisors (90%), job duties (88%), hours of work (77%), and wages (73%). About half
       (47%) of all employed respondents, though, would like to work more hours.

Keeping with the three year cycle, the next Consumer Satisfaction Exit Survey Report will be
due in 2013, with data collected from 2010 – 2012. The committee made the following
     Surveys should be sent out every three months;
     A summary of the report should be provided to all DVRS counselors;
     Managers and Supervisors should receive a copy of the full report;
     Dedicated time needs to be identified for all staff to review and discuss the results of the
      report; and
     Identify trends that could possibly impact and affect client services.

The committee also recommended areas of possible improvement:
   1. Identifying new SRC members with data interpretation experience if possible;
   2. Use of electronic surveys;
   3. Utilizing data entry clerk on a temporary basis;
   4. Demographic analysis by regions (i.e. southern, central, northern); and
   5. User-friendly format for the committee report itself.

SRC Policy Committee
The SRC policy committee is responsible for oversight in the following areas:
    State Plan Review
    State Plan Public Hearings
    Other Policy Changes
    Administrative Code Review
    Comprehensive Needs Assessment

State Plan Public Hearings
The SRC Policy Committee coordinated and hosted four 2011 State Plan Public Hearings which
were attended by a diverse representation of 86 participants. Hearings were held in Mullica Hill,
Pennington, North Brunswick and Belvidere which represented all parts of New Jersey.
Feedback was received on DVRS as well as DVRS service providers. Input received at these
hearings was included in attachments to the State Plan. Those who provided testimony expressed
significant concerns regarding potential fiscal impact on services to traditional constituents of
DVR as well as expanded services in the area of transition.

Significant Issues from the Public Hearings:
    Request for enhanced communications between all parties with an interest in the VR
    Increase accountability and consistency from DVRS and vendors.
    State budget cuts to programs for persons with disabilities are unacceptable and a unified
       response is necessary.

New Jersey State Rehabilitation Council                             2011 Annual Report

      Independent Living request that State funding cuts from 2010 be restored to prior levels
       and asked for additional funds to support the “Promoting Self-Advocacy” Program.
      Strengthen relationship with the Small Business Administration and expand
       entrepreneurial opportunities to individuals with disabilities.
      Continue Transition efforts in the school districts and build upon the relationship with
       Supported Employment vendors who offer community based experiences leading to
       competitive employment.
      Continue DVRS efforts of training counselors in working with individuals on the Autism
      Sheltered workshop referrals increasing and contract work stable. Extended Employment
       program very busy with long-term customers but they aim to broaden their customer
      Long Term Follow Along (LTFA) cuts remain an issue with vendors in NJ. Concerns
       about service cuts, layoffs of job coaches and financial uncertainties were expressed.

At the request of the SRC, DVRS continues to develop and monitor interagency agreements.
This will ensure appropriate delivery of services by DVRS and other agencies and organizations
with which they interface in service provision, using a format developed and recommended by
the SRC.

SRC Legislative Committee
In FY’11 the SRC identified the need to form a separate committee specifically to address the
legislative needs of the public program. The Legislative Committee has the responsibility to
represent the best interests of the public VR program and its constituent consumers. It is the
entity that will educate public officials who control policies and funding of the program. The
Committee identified and reviewed emerging legislative issues and pending bills and synthesized
the information for full Council reaction and recommendations. This committee will be
responsible to analyze any pending legislation nationally and at the state level that would have
impact on the public VR system. Members will meet and share information throughout the year
and report at every SRC meeting. If needed, email alerts will be sent to the full SRC
membership concerning pending legislative issues when warranted.

SETC Disability Issues Subcommittee
The SETC Disability Issues Subcommittee met regularly throughout the year and has
significantly raised the awareness of DVRS within the SETC and One-Stop Career Centers. The
sub-committee consists of members from the DVRS and the New Jersey Commission for the
Blind and Visually Impaired (CBVI) SRC, the State Directors from the General and Blind
Vocational Rehabilitation Agencies and the Executive Director of the State Employment and
Training Commission (SETC) - New Jersey’s State Workforce Investment Board (WIB). This
committee was established as a result of SRC advocacy.

The committee meets according to the schedule developed by its membership. Discussions
regarding how to ensure the One-Stop System as a barrier-free environment, both physically and
attitudinally, continue to be the focus of this committee. The Department of Labor and

New Jersey State Rehabilitation Council                              2011 Annual Report

Workforce Development values the information generated by the sub-committee, and has
supported their recommendations.

To further establish a positive connection with the workforce development service delivery
system, the Disability Issues Subcommittee became the advisory body for “Discoverability”
which represents New Jersey’s effort to improve the employment of people with disabilities
through the resources provided by the Medicaid Infrastructure Grant. This has enabled the group
to expand to include more consumer members and individuals across state agencies.

The Council promotes inclusion at all sponsored meetings for members and other participants by
providing, as needed, personal care attendant services, transportation services, interpreter
services, computer assisted real-time transcription (CART) and assistive listening devices.
Teleconferencing is made available to accommodate persons who have difficulty traveling, or
who reside in rural or remote areas. In addition, all documents are sent out prior to each SRC
meeting via email.

Regular New Jersey SRC Meetings
The SRC conducts quarterly meetings. Meetings were held on November 18th, February 3rd,
June 16th, and September 16th. Full Council activities are scheduled in the morning with
committees meeting in the afternoon. Committee meetings are also held in the interim months,
on an as needed basis. Conference calling is used when appropriate. Regular meetings are open
to the public and interested stakeholders are encouraged to attend.

SRC Orientation/Training
Council members recognize that education and training are critical aspects of their development.
On September 12, 2011, the DVRS SRC held a joint training session with the SRC of the
Commission for the Blind; this session was designed to provide SRC members with an overview
and/or update to SRC structures and mandates, as well as to provide insight into the relationship
of the SRC to Federal legislation. The meeting was well-attended and represents the first effort
to partner with SRC members from CBVI.

SRC Members Participate in the Council of State Administrators of Vocational
Rehabilitation (CSAVR)
Council representatives regularly attend the CSAVR spring and fall meetings. There is a special
track for SRC leadership nationally that meets the day before the general CSAVR meeting
begins. New Jersey SRC representatives attend this meeting in addition to the general CSAVR

NJSRC representatives participate in CSAVR Standing Committee meetings; including the Deaf,
Deaf Blind, Hard-of-Hearing and Late-Deafened Standing Committee; the Transition Standing
Committee and the Employment Standing Committee.

New Jersey State Rehabilitation Council                                        2011 Annual Report

Several members of the committee continue to work on the “Model State Plan for Rehabilitation
Services for Individuals Who Are Deaf, Deaf-Blind, Hard-of-Hearing and Late-Deafened” and
have offered technical consultation throughout the country.

All Eligible Consumers continue to be served
In FY’11, DVRS served all categories of eligible consumers. While the agency currently has the
financial resources to serve all categories, it is projected that consumers needing services will
increase. This, coupled with staff hiring freezes, could result in insufficient financial and/or staff
resources needed to serve all eligible applicants for services in FY’12. It is therefore prudent to
remain on an Order of Selection for Services (OSS) in FY’12.

Successful Employment Outcomes
FY’11, Status 26 closures increased from FY’10 numbers, to 3930. This increase may be
attributed to the hard work and focus of the VR staff who, in spite of severe staffing shortages
and high caseload numbers, were able to surpass their employment outcome goals. In FY’11
1704 females and 2226 males with disabilities were successfully rehabilitated.

                                         FY 09                        FY10                 FY 11
Rehab Closures                           4022                         3925                 3930

Minority Identification
Approximately 48% of all individuals served by DVRS during FY’11 are from minority groups,
with 51% of rehab closures representing minority groups.

                               FY09 Rehab Closures             FY10 Rehab Closures   FY11 Rehab Closures

Caucasian                                 55%                         49%                   55%
Black                                     30%                         27%                   30%
Hispanic/Latino                           12%                         22%                   12%
Asian                                      2%                          2%                    2%
Pacific Islander                          .2%                         .2%                   .7%
American Indian                           .3%                         .3%                   .2%

Referrals by Region*1

Northern Region

                Office                                 Caseloads                      Referrals
Paterson                                9                                    557
Morristown                              6                                    337
    Caseload reflects new staff hired September 2011

New Jersey State Rehabilitation Council                             2011 Annual Report

Hackettstown                    5                               637
Hackensack                      9                               712
Jersey City                     8                               601
Total                           37                              2844

Central Region

            Office                        Caseloads                         Referrals
Newark                          15                               1196
New Brunswick                   7                                716
Elizabeth                       8                                874
Somerville                      5                                493
Trenton                         9                                720
Neptune                         10                               925
Total                           54                               4924

Southern Region

            Office                        Caseloads                         Referrals
Toms River                      9                                735
Camden                          10                               987
Thorofare                       5                                460
Westampton                      5                                544
Pleasantville                   8                                635
Bridgeton                       6                                470
Wildwood                        3                                147
Total                           46                               3978

DVRS received a total of 11,746 referrals during FY’11. Referral sources included self referral,
secondary schools, CRPs, medical professionals, One-Stop Career Centers, Post-secondary
Schools, Social Security Administration and Welfare.

Self-Referred                                      59%
Elementary or High School                          26%
Other                                              15%

Disabilities Served
    Mental Illness and /or Substance Abuse – 36%
    Cognitive Disabilities - 28%
    Communication Impairments – 5%
    Orthopedic - 18%
    Other Disabilities - 13%

New Jersey State Rehabilitation Council                              2011 Annual Report

Supported Employment Assists Consumers with Significant Disabilities
DVRS successfully rehabilitated 1,307 who received Supported Employment services in FY ’11;
the following represent the most significant disabilities:
     Mental Illness
     Developmental Disabilities
     Deaf/Hard-of-Hearing
     Traumatic Brain Injury

In each of these disability groups the division worked with CRPs with specific expertise in the
provision of services.

Individuals receiving Supported Employment Services in FY’11 accounted for 33% of
successful rehab closures.

Transitioning Continues as a Major Initiative
Since 2002, the transition program for students with disabilities continues to be a major program
initiative, with a Lead Transition Counselor in each of the 18 DVRS field offices. The Program
Development Specialist assigned to working with Transition communicates regularly with these
designated personnel. In FY’11, the Transition Counselors statewide made significant impact on
school systems and transitioning students as evidenced by the following:
      # of Technical Consultations – 16,311
      # of IEP Meetings Attended – 1,473
      # of Presentations/Meetings with school personnel or parents/students - 2,694

DVRS presented at 34 combined Pathways to Adulthood & Life After 21 Presentations this year
(sponsored by the Family Support Center of NJ). In addition DVRS presented at six Dare to
Dream Conferences sponsored by Office of Special Education.

DVRS is an active participant on the State Special Education Advisory Council and Transition
Coordinator meetings, in conjunction with NJ DOE and OSEP.

A new brochure, “Guidelines for School Personnel” has been developed and is now on the
DVRS website. In addition, a new informational brochure that targets students has been

Transitioning to Post School Activities
The NJ Department of Education Office of Special Education Programs has provided funding to
support a position within each of the state’s 12 CILs to promote advocacy and teach classified
and 504 students to self-advocate. DVRS continued to partner with OSEP through FY’11 by
managing this program. This program was subject to a compliance finding from the 2010 RSA
monitoring. In order to resolve the finding the DVRS required each CIL to require VR
appropriate activities for youth who will be served in this program in FY 2012. The DVRS and
the NJDOE will share funding in FY 2012.

New Jersey State Rehabilitation Council                              2011 Annual Report

Masters Degree Programs Collaborate with DVRS
The University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey (UMDNJ) Masters degree program
reports the following collaborative activities:
    DVRS regularly provides practicum and internship placements.
    DVRS and SRC members have provided letters of support for grant applications for
        rehabilitation education program students at both the graduate and undergraduate level.
    DVRS staff and SRC members provide classroom lectures, mentor students, assist with
        case conferences and provide knowledge of current practices in the field.
    Several members of the DSU and the SRC are active members of the UMDNJ/SHRP
        Rehabilitation Counseling Program Advisory Council.

In additional to supporting staff to attend UMDNJ the agency has also offered programs in the
George Washington University and several other universities offering on-line support.

Mental Health Services
DVRS continues to work in a collaborative effort with the Division of Mental Health Services
(DMHS) in providing Supported Employment services to consumers with mental illness. This is
achieved through the funding and oversight of contracts with 22 Supported Employment
programs across the state. DVRS is represented on the NJ Mental Health Council through
attendance at monthly meetings. DVRS provides consultation regarding DVRS policies and
services to various New Jersey-based mental health agencies and organizations. For FY 2012 a
Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) was developed between the Department of Human
Services Division of Mental Health and Addiction Services and the Department of Labor and
Workforce Development Division of Vocational Rehabilitation Services.

Hispanic/ Latino Outreach Pilot
A pilot program funded by DVRS in two community rehabilitation centers to improve outreach
to Hispanic people with disabilities was continued for FY 2011. The activities included the
provision of disability and rehabilitation information and referral to DVRS, One-Stops and CILs.
It is expected that over 100 individuals will be referred to the DVRS for services by the end of
calendar year 2011 via this program.

National VR Network
Both individual DVRS consumers and businesses have greatly benefited from this national
collaboration that has been activated by the CSAVR National Employment Network (The NET).
The agency has also continued a partnership with the Business Leadership Network (BLN) and
hopes to benefit from all of the information generated from the “Discoverability” project that is
funded by the Medicaid Infrastructure Grant (MIG).

Regional Deafness Centers
Three regional centers serving individuals who are deaf, hard of hearing, late deafened or with
cochlear implants opened in 2009. They are as follows:
    JVS Goodwill Career Center (operated by Jewish Vocational Service and Goodwill of
       Northern NJ)
    Career Development Center (operated by Bridges to Employment in Raritan)
    Career Success Solution (operated by Burlington County College)

New Jersey State Rehabilitation Council                                    2011 Annual Report

The purpose of the centers is to provide the services necessary to enable eligible NJDVRS clients
who are deaf, hard of hearing, late deafened, or who have cochlear implants to prepare for,
obtain, and retain employment. These centers offer vocational evaluations, job search support
and advice on Assistive Listening Devices and appropriate individuals are encouraged to make
appointments through the Division of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing. As of December 2011 57
DVRS clients have been successfully placed by the centers in 2011.

One-Stop Career Centers Continue Efforts toward Disability Access
Services to individuals with disabilities continue to be positively impacted in the One Stop
Career Centers through lessons learned from Project Access and through the efforts of the SETC
Disability Issues Committee:
    Disability Program Navigators (DPNs) have proven to be an asset in assisting people
       with disabilities to have adequate access to the services of the OSCC. When USDOL
       funds were reduced the DVRS chose to dedicate funding for these positions. This was a
       compliance finding as per the 2010 RSA monitoring report, and the division subsequently
       ceased funding them.
    DVRS Office Managers are actively involved with their local WIBs and typically serve
       as the Chair of their respective Disability Committees.
    Accessibility assessments for both facilities and services continue to be conducted via
       two checklists at all One-Stop sites. These assessments are completed by the NJ
       Department of Labor and Workforce Development Compliance Officer and status reports
       are given to each site to ensure that the goal of universal access is met.
    Beginning in FY 2011 the DLWD received a USDOL grant called the Disability Employment
       Initiative (DEI). The DVRS was given the management responsibilities for this grant. In New
       Jersey, the grant has 4 pilot sites that receive funding to increase the access of youth populations
       with disabilities into the local one-stops. The grant includes targeted outreach to youth reentry
       programs and returning youth veterans.

The DVRS supported several grants in FY 11:
    Social Enterprise for Economic Development (SEED) – ARRA funding was used to
       support 10 small businesses run by community-based organizations. The purpose of the
       projects was to place people with disabilities into employment which would enable them
       to acquire skills that are transferable to the general workforce. The SEED program ended
       on 9/30/2011. These businesses are well on their way to becoming sustainable in FY
    Small Business Grants – FY 11 marked the end of a three-year grant cycle that was
       given to 5 social enterprise businesses. These were developed using a worker
       cooperative model that promotes employees making decisions through a coop board and
       reinvesting profits back into the business.
    Innovation and Expansion – DVRS used a portion of Title 1 funds in FY 11 for the
       development and implementation of innovative approaches to expand and improve the
       provision of vocational rehabilitation services to individuals with disabilities. The
       current seven I & E grants were awarded through a competitive NGO process. These
       grants were eligible for an additional year of funding.

New Jersey State Rehabilitation Council                               2011 Annual Report

ARRA Activities
ARRA activities for FY’11 included:
   The SEED Program – Social Enterprise for Economic Development funded 10 small
     business start-ups. (see above)
   Grants to the five Part B Centers for Independent Living to support a position in each
     center to develop external resources to support innovative programs.
   Partial funding of Innovation and Expansion grants.

The DVRS was successful in using all ARRA funding provided to them.

Job Development Training
Rich Grossman of NRG Concepts provided Job Development training to all DVRS local offices
in FY 2010. The training curriculum was specifically designed for DVRS staff in an effort to
increase successful closures through appropriate job match for job ready clients. In FY 2011
Workforce Development funded a consultant that provided customized training to the DVRS
Central Office staff on an array of topics including project management, time management, and
work efficiencies. For FY 2012 NRG Concepts has been asked to develop training for the local
offices specifically to increase staff ability to market internships for DVRS clients.

In-Service Training Grant
DVRS was a successful applicant under the State Vocational Rehabilitation Unit In-Service
Training (CFDA 84.265A) Program, which is a 5 year discretionary grant through RSA. The
goal of this project is to assure opportunities for employment, independence and the integration
of people with disabilities into the community by expanding the training, education and skills of
rehabilitation personnel through a managed system of continuing education. In FY’11 DVRS
was able to send several staff members to conferences, including the Association for Persons in
Supported Employment (APSE), the New Jersey Rehabilitation Association (NJRA) summer and
winter conferences, and the Garden State Employment and Training Association (GSETA)
annual conference. Additional staff members were able to attend conferences specific to their
area of expertise as well.

FY’11 Policy Changes Supported by the SRC
During Program Year 2011, there were several official policy changes proposed:
    Increasing the required GPA for tuition support from 2.0 to 2.5. The SRC opposed this
       change on the grounds that it exceeded the standard required by most colleges and
       universities. DVRS reconsidered the proposal and will remain with the 2.0 GPA
    Spending restructuring for college tuition was rolled back to $2,500 per semester – SRC
    Funding was approved for up to three remedial classes in conjunction with a college
       program – SRC supported.
    Implementation of a Notice of Grant Opportunity (NGO) for Long Term Follow Along
       (LTFA) contracts. Historically DVRS utilized a fee for service agreement with providers
       of LTFA. To better manage the state funding for LTFA, a contract based system was
       initiated. As required by the Governor’s office, all contracts are subject to competitive

New Jersey State Rehabilitation Council                              2011 Annual Report

       bidding. The SRC met with the Commissioner of Labor and Workforce Development to
       offer input on the NGO process and provided written feedback on the NGO application.
       DVRS incorporated this feedback on the final document.

The SRC and the DVRS were successful in advocacy efforts that included promotions to backfill
managers and supervisors in local offices, and hiring of 25 new counselors. This was a
welcomed addition; however, staff shortages remained, in particular for support staff in the local
offices. The DVRS utilized the 55 plus program with workforce and successfully hired several
support staff from this initiative. Ongoing monitoring and analysis of all staff vacancies and
assignments will be necessary moving into FY12 with the goal of providing sufficient/effective
use of human resources as well as assuring compliance with federal guidance and the state plan.
The agency will continue the challenge of replacement of retiring supervisors, managers,
administrators, program specialists and support staff. Staffing vacancies on any level severely
impacts service delivery.

Administrative Changes
As a result of the ongoing effort to streamline support services and to adhere to federal guidance
on a variety of subjects as well as Departmental organization, DVR made a series of
administrative changes during FY’11. All significant staff changes are shared with the SRC and
the advice of the SRC sought as appropriate.

Working Toward CSPD Compliance
Eighty-three percent of DVRS’ 132 professional counselors now have Masters Degrees as a
result of the project with the UMDNJ Masters in Rehabilitation Counseling Program. DVRS
field offices actively support the program’s clinical supervision of interns. Counselors who do
not have a Masters’ Degree have been encouraged to attain highly qualified status.

DVRS noted that the education criterion (Masters Degree in Rehabilitation Counseling and/or a
CRC) was rather narrow to attract an adequate pool of counselor candidates. With RSA
technical assistance and Civil Service guidance, DVRS expanded the educational criteria to
include a Masters degree in a closely-related field such as Social Work, Psychology, Counseling,
Education and Special Education along with successful completion of one graduate course in
Theories and Techniques of Counseling. All new Counselors hired in FY’11 have highly
qualified status.

Standards & Indicators
In FY’11 the DVRS met or exceeded all RSA Standards and Indicators except 1.5 (earnings
ratio) and 1.2 (cases closed). Despite numerous staffing challenges DVRS managed to
successfully rehabilitate 3930 persons with disabilities in NJ, which is 4 more than in the
previous year.

New Jersey State Rehabilitation Council                              2011 Annual Report

The earnings ratio indicator continues to be a challenge in New Jersey due to the high per capita
income of the state. DVRS has no control over these earnings. This particular indicator affects
most of the northeastern states due to the higher income levels of these states. The SRC supports
a change in this RSA Indicator to make it more equitable to all states.

The RSA monitoring report which resulted from the monitoring visit in April, 2010 was
provided to the agency in March 2011. A synopsis of the report was provided to the SRC and
discussed at the meeting in June 2011. The SRC expects to be given feedback on membership
vacancies and term limits and has implemented a plan for compliance that will be completed by
the end of FY’12. The SRC membership was given a progress report concerning the RSA
compliance findings at its meeting in September 2011 and will be given updates on a regular
basis until monitoring issues are resolved.

Comprehensive Statewide Needs Assessment
The Current State Plan was approved with RSA’s offer of technical assistance to help the agency
with the Comprehensive Statewide Needs Assessment. DVRS received guidelines from RSA
during this fiscal year.

SRC Member Replacement
The recruitment of new members for the SRC is an ongoing activity, with special focus on
maintaining a diverse membership and a majority count of consumers as current member terms
max out. Strategies have been put into place to mentor new members to transition into lead roles
and effectively conduct the ongoing business of the Council.

State Funding
DVRS continues to coordinate several state funded programs to offer consumers increased
options and choices in employment. Due to budget cuts in state FY’10, the following programs
continue to operate within reduced budgets:
     Extended Employment
     Transportation reimbursement for Extended Employees
     Long Term Follow Along (LTFA) for people who have completed a Supported
       Employment Program
However, the state FY’12 included an increase of $6 million dollars specific to these programs.
Funding was reallocated and increases to each of the programs commenced in July 2011.


      Meetings:
         o Continue quarterly Council meetings
         o Conduct an annual planning summit as a one day event
         o Conduct public forums in geographically diverse areas to obtain input regarding
             services delivered and communicate with the community

New Jersey State Rehabilitation Council                              2011 Annual Report

         o Support the agency’s efforts to meet on a regularly scheduled basis with service
            providers and/or other agencies for planning, problem solving, grant development
            and other purposes as needed
      Committees:
         o Enhance and support the sub-committee structure itself
         o Enhance and support the recommendations of the sub-committees by full
            disclosure of sub-committee recommendations in advance of meetings where
            possible and follow up by the full SRC

      SRC Membership:
         o Develop screening guidelines for recruitment and membership and review
            membership activities/status at each Executive Committee meeting, including
            resignations/expiration of appointments
         o Provide guidance re: issues relating to recruitment and approval of members
         o Initiate plans for new SRC member orientation/training, including consideration
            of joint efforts with CBVI.

      Communication:
         o Look at opportunities and encourage the use of technology including, but not
            limited to conference calling, long distance learning, and/or a dedicated web site
            for purposes of information sharing, receiving input, training of members
            (including staff), emergency and routine notifications.

      Educational Efforts:
          o Continue leadership in providing training, support and access to the One-Stop
              systems regarding persons with disabilities and the workforce
          o Develop educational information regarding the services provided to, successes
              and outcomes of DVRS constituents, including legislative district break down
          o Advocate for the use of ROI study protocol to demonstrate the effectiveness and
              efficiency of DVRS services.
      Advocacy:
          o Continue to advocate for funding which will provide support to DVR for staffing,
              programs, staff development and vocational rehabilitation services as mandated
              by RSA and the demands of NJ’s population
          o Advocate for funding to support DVR’s efforts to expand services thru grants and
              other means as appropriate to support a full range of services to individuals,
              including those in transition.
          o Advocate for funding to support RSA’s requirements for state match
          o Provide support to DVRS in applying for grants that enhance successful
              employment outcomes for persons with disabilities
          o Continue consumer satisfaction activities, analysis and follow up
              recommendations to ensure DVRS is meeting the changing needs of its

      Support DVRS’ effort to gain approval for paid internships.

New Jersey State Rehabilitation Council                                   2011 Annual Report

      Participate in development of goals and work plan to enhance services to consumers who
       are the most significantly disabled by psychiatric illness.

      Continue active involvement with the CSAVR National Employment Network (The

The New Jersey State Rehabilitation Council (SRC) provides oversight and advises the Division of
Vocational Rehabilitation Services (DSU) within the Department of Labor (DSA). The SRC is a
partnership of people with disabilities, advocates, and other interested persons who are committed
to ensuring through policy development, implementation, and advocacy that New Jersey has a
rehabilitation program that is not only comprehensive and consumer-responsive but also effective,
efficient, and significantly funded. The SRC is dedicated to ensuring that people with disabilities
receive rehabilitation services that result in gainful employment. Representing the myriad of diversity
that is New Jersey, Council members believe that individuals with disabilities are the “untapped
resource” to the business community and assert that disability is a natural part of the human experience
that in no way diminishes a person’s right to fully participate in all aspects of American life. Members
of the SRC in New Jersey believe in a public system of vocational rehabilitation that is
responsible and accountable to those it serves and to those who fund it; they believe that
competitive jobs generate tax revenue and enable all individuals, including individuals with
disabilities, to spend discretionary income which contributes to the state's economy.

The SRC and DVRS jointly develop and review elements of the State Plan. An assessment of
the effectiveness of the VR delivery system has resulted in the following recommendations based
on information gathered from public forums, Consumer Satisfaction Survey, Comprehensive
Needs Assessment, staff, and meetings with critical stakeholders.

SRC Recommendation:
In order to provide, expand and improve services to individuals with disabilities, the SRC
recommends that VR increase its efforts to hire and retain qualified staff.
Agency Response:
VR accepts the recommendation and will work with the SRC to implement the strategies
described in Attachment 4.10 for the Comprehensive System of Personnel Development. Staff
vacancies at the start of federal year 2011 caused significant delays in customer response,
especially in local offices in the southern part of the state. In order to support the needs of DVR
customers in these locations the DSU initiated a team of floating counselors to work in the
effected offices each week to alleviate the caseload backlog.
In March 2011 the DSA approved the promotion of 5 managers and 9 Supervisors.
In March 2011 the DSA approved the promotion of 22 Counselors.

New Jersey State Rehabilitation Council                               2011 Annual Report

In April 2011 the DSA approved the hiring of 25 new counselors. The DSU’s timeline for hiring
should be completed by July 1, 2011. The DSU is grateful to be extended the hiring freeze
exemption; however, data indicates staff shortages will continue in the local offices. The DSU
will continue to work with DSA executive management to fill vacancies stemming from
retirements and/or terminations of staff.

SRC Recommendation:
The SRC acknowledges its duty to examine the success of the VR program through public
hearings. The SRC recognizes the importance of keeping open lines of communication with VR
and consumers of VR services. The SRC recommends that VR work cooperatively to develop,
administer and arrange opportunities for consumer input.
Agency Response:
VR accepts the recommendation and will work cooperatively with the SRC as appropriate in
seeking opportunities for consumer input.

SRC Recommendation:
The SRC recognizes that job seekers with disabilities sometimes require innovative approaches
to enhance their chance to garner gainful integrated employment. The SRC recommends that
VR pursue strategies such as using paid internships and/or OJT opportunities for qualified VR
job seekers as appropriate.
Agency Response:
VR accepts the recommendation and will work with the SRC to develop policies that promote
the use of paid internship experiences and OJT opportunities.

SRC Recommendation:
The SRC recognizes that people with disabilities need full access to the One-Stop systems. The
SRC recommends that DVRS continue in its leadership in providing training, coordination,
support, and access to the One-Stop systems throughout New Jersey.
Agency Response:
VR accepts the recommendation and will continue to work with the SRC to develop strategies
that will increase the numbers of One-Stop customers who self-identify and are subsequently
referred to DVRS for assistance. In August 2010 the DSA officially rolled DVRS into its
Workforce Development services. VR has been an instrumental partner in identifying strategies
to enhance the workforce flow of services that will support individuals with disabilities who
access the One-Stop systems in New Jersey. Currently group orientations given by VR and One-
Stop staff are being given in specific local offices to enhance opportunity for individuals in need
of VR information. VR counselors in one office were given enhanced training on the workforce
OASOS data base system as a pilot initiative to ensure accurate recording of customer flow.

New Jersey State Rehabilitation Council                             2011 Annual Report

SRC Recommendation:
The SRC is mindful that there is a need to enhance services to customers who are the most
significantly compromised by psychiatric illness. The SRC recommends that DVRS continue to
develop and enhance services to this segment of the state’s population.
Agency Response:
VR accepts the recommendation and will continue to work with the SRC to develop strategies
that will increase integrated employment opportunities for VR customers disabled by psychiatric
illness. VR has enjoyed a collaborative relationship with the Division of Mental Health Services
for many years and is looking forward to enhancing that relationship to result in quality
employment outcomes for VR customers with significant psychiatric illness. VR will work to
ensure that RSA monitoring findings regarding this contractual relationship with DMHS are

SRC Recommendation:
The SRC recognizes that the VR program is affected by state funding cuts. The Council also
understands that continued cuts from the state will impact the ability to draw down the federal
matching funds for Title I. The SRC understands that at this point DVRS will be flat funded for
State Year 2012, and it recommends that VR seek grant opportunities that will enhance
continued success in employment outcomes for persons with disabilities.
Agency Response:
VR accepts the recommendation and will continue to work with the SRC in seeking appropriate
grant opportunities. In August 2010 VR supported the DSA in applying for a grant from the
USDOL for funding youth with disabilities, in particular offender and returning veteran youth
populations. The DSA was funded and looked to DVR to provide the leadership to ensure that
the requirements of the grant are carried out appropriately.

SRC Recommendation:
The SRC recommends that VR continue the many activities to enhance the transition of students
with disabilities from school to post school activities including employment.
Agency Response:
VR accepts the recommendation and will continue to work with the SRC and other critical
stakeholders, including local school districts, the state education agency, the Division of
Developmental Disabilities, the Division of Disability Services, and New Jersey’s Centers for
Independent Living to develop strategies that identify VR as a critical partner in providing
services to students with disabilities in transition with particular emphasis on strategies that
result in gainful integrated employment.

New Jersey State Rehabilitation Council                              2011 Annual Report

SRC Recommendation:
The SRC recommends that VR continue to educate the community and policy makers as to the
services, successes and outcomes of the state public vocational rehabilitation program.

Agency Response:
VR accepts the recommendation and will continue to create documents that highlight the
agency’s activities. DVRS works with the LWD Legislative Liaison and his staff to respond to
state legislators on a regular basis. Through that office the DSU has shared pertinent agency
information and responded to many questions about the programs serving people with

SRC Recommendation:
The SRC recommends that DVRS continue to develop, revise and monitor agreements with other
State agencies and community partners following the standard procedure for Memoranda of
Agency Response:
VR accepts the recommendation and in the spirit of collaboration and cooperation has expanded
the MOU process beyond the traditional state disability programs and has included the One Stop
Career Centers by Service Delivery Area (SDA). To further promote the ongoing positive
relationship with stakeholders DVRS with SRC support will reconvene the Work Group
meetings of the Boards of the Association of Persons in Supported Employment and ACCSES
NJ to offer a more unified approach to the delivery and efficiency of those services.

Emerging Trends
In the discussions that occur in the regular meetings, the SRC often requests that the DSU
investigate areas that represent new and emerging trends or innovations within the rehabilitation
community that may be transferred to DVRS as a program area. In concert with the SRC, the
DSU has either begun to explore or will continue to support activities in the following areas:
      The identification of Innovation and Expansion programs that recognize cultural diversity
       and encourage individuals with disabilities from minority groups that can be identified as
      The acknowledgement that the state’s high rate of disabilities on the Autism Spectrum
       Disorder demands continued investigation and training to ensure that the DVRS service
       delivery is appropriate and up to date.

During FY’11, the Rehabilitation Council worked cohesively and productively partially as a
result of renewed emphasis on the tools at hand, committee structure, staff and member
dedication and focus on staffing to achieve maximum employment outcomes. Members worked
closely with each other, DVRS, Department of Labor and Workforce Development personnel,

New Jersey State Rehabilitation Council                              2011 Annual Report

other state agency Directors, and most importantly with the constituency it is mandated to serve.
It made recommendations on topics of importance to the Federal and State governments, and
supported the participation of DVRS in local initiatives.

The Rehabilitation Council has benefited from the support and cooperation of the New Jersey
DVRS. The Council looks forward to another year of challenges and successful outcomes for
persons with disabilities who seek employment and other services through the New Jersey

               New Jersey State Rehabilitation Council                                        2011 Annual Report

TRENTON (Central)                                    JERSEY CITY (Hudson)                       PLEASANTVILLE (Atlantic)
 John Fitch Plaza – 12th Floor                       438 Summit Avenue, 07306-3187              2 S. Main St., 1st Fl. Suite 2, 08232
P.O. Box 398, 08625-0398                              ANAND SUMAITHANGI, Supervisor             HARRIET PASSARELLI, Supervisor
ALICE HUNNICUTT, Director                            201-217-7180, 201-217-7287/FAX             609-813-3933, 609-813-3959/FAX
609-292-5987, 609-292-8347/FAX                       201-217-7290/TTY                           608-813-3958/TTY, 609-241-7064/VP
609-292-2919/TTY, 609-341-3000/VP                                                NJ Transit Contact: Madeline Ribarte       NJ Transit Contact: Leslie Heyer

BRIDGETON (Cumberland, Salem)                        MORRISTOWN (Morris)                        SOMERVILLE (Somerset, Hunterdon)
40 E. Broad Street, Suite 204, 08302-2881            7 Sussex Ave., 2nd Floor, 07960-3886       75 Veterans Memorial Dr., Suite 101
MARVA FERGUSON, Supervisor                           SCOTT MCGILL, Manager                       08876-2952
856-453-3888, 856-453-3909/FAX                       JORGE DELGADO, Supervisor                  ELIZABETH CONTE, Supervisor
856-453-3923/TTY                                     973-631-6304, 973-631-6309/FAX             908-704-3030, 908-704-3476/FAX                             973-539-3665/TTY                           732-545-8147/TTY
NJ Transit Contact: Nicole LaTourette               
                                                     NJ Transit Contact: Maria Perez/           NJ Transit Contact: Danielle Kwan
                                                     Beverly Halgren
CAMDEN (Camden)                                      NEPTUNE (Monmouth)                         THOROFARE (Gloucester)
2600 Mt. Ephraim Ave., Suite 103 08104-3290          60 Taylor Avenue, 07753-4844               Gloucester Regional Service Ctr.
TERESA OWENS, Manager (908-282-7608/Fax)             SUSAN RAKOCI-ANDERSON, Manager             215 Crown Point Rd., Suite 200,
VITO PALO & IRENE PEREZ, Supervisors                 KATHY SPACE, Supervisor                    08086-2153
856-614-2500, 856-614-2538/FAX                       732-775-1799, 732-775-1666/FAX             EDWARD GREEN, Manager
856-614-2504/TTY                                     732-775-1711/TTY                           STACEY SMITH, Supervisor                                      856-384-3730, 856-384-3777/FAX
NJ Transit Contact: Charlotte Bagley                 NJ Transit Contact: Donna Smith/           856-384-3778/TTY
                                                     Cheryl Neal                      
                                                                                                NJ Transit Contact: Gladys Cruz
ELIZABETH (Union)                                    NEWARK (Essex)                             TOMS RIVER (Ocean)
921 Elizabeth Ave., 3rd Floor 07201                  990 Broad Street, 2nd Floor, 07101         1027 Hooper Ave., Bldg. 6, 3rd Floor
MYRNA PINCKNEY, Manager                               SOLO OKONKWO, Supervisor                  Suite 1, 08753-2225
PAT WILLIAMS, Supervisor                             ANAND SUMAITHANGI, Supervisor              CHERYL DEGRAFF-SHANKLE, Manager
908-965-3940, 908-965-2976/FAX                       973-648-3494, 973-648-3902/FAX             CHERYL VAIL, Supervisor                             973-648-2733/TTY                           732-505-2310, 732-505-2317/FAX
NJ Transit Contact: Carol Serrano/Vanessa Harris                   732-505-2319/TTY
                                                     NJ Transit Contact: Carol Tucker 
                                                                                                NJ Transit Contact: Cheryl Shankle,
                                                                                                Cheryl Vail, Denise Richmond
HACKENSACK (Bergen)                                   NEW BRUNSWICK (Middlesex)                 Trenton (Mercer)
60 State Street2, 2nd Floor, 07601-5471               550 Jersey Avenue, P.O. Box 2672,         Labor Station Plaza, P.O. Box 959
JERRY CALABRESE, Manager                             08901                                      28 Yard Avenue, 08625-0959
MAXINE BECKER, Supervisor                             Elizabeth Sims, Supervisor                MELVIN CRAWFORD, Manager
201-996-8970, 201-996-8880/FAX                        732-937-6300, 732-937-6358/FAX            HELEN LIU, Supervisor
201-487-6348/TTY                                      732-545-8147/TTY                          609-292-2940, 609-984-3553/FAX                                      609-984-1568/TTY
NJ Transit Contact: Donalette Miller                  NJ Transit Contact: Richard Rodd
                                                                                                NJ Transit Contact: Trisha Ray Williams
HACKETTSTOWN (Sussex, Warren)                        PATERSON (Passaic)                         WESTAMPTON (Burlington)
223 Stiger Street, Suite A, 07840-1217               370 Broadway, 3rd Fl., Room 305, 07501     795 Woodlane Road, 08060
SCOTT MCGILL, Manager                                ROSEMARY PETRIZZO, Manager                 EDWARD GREEN, Manager
908-852-4110, 908-813-9745/FAX                       DEBRALU HAGERMAN, Supervisor               FERNE ALLEN, Supervisor
908-852-0213/TTY                                     973-977-4285, 973-279-5895/FAX             609-518-3948, 609-518-0212/FAX                             866-376-7356/VP                  
                                                              NJ Transit Contact: Yvette Gibson
                                                     NJ Transit Contact: Karen Brown
                                                                                                WILDWOOD (Cape May)
                                                                                                3810 New Jersey Avenue, 08260
                                                                                                KEITH MCDERMOTT, Manager
                                                                                                HARRIET PASSARELLI, Supervisor
                                                                                                609-523-0330, 609-523-0212/FAX
                                                                                                NJ Transit Contact: Karen Sandora


To top