All 2009 minutes as one document by dar12039

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									            Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission
                     _______________________
                 State Rehabilitation Council
                       27 Wormwood Street
                            Suite 600
                        Boston, MA 02210
                          617-204-3665

This document includes SRC Meeting Minutes for 2009

March 12, 2009
June 11, 2009
Sept. 10, 2009




                                                      1
              Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission
                                _______________________
                                 State Rehabilitation Council
                                        27 Wormwood Street
                                             Suite 600
                                         Boston, MA 02210
                                           617-204-3665

Past Chairperson
Youcef “Joe” Bellil

Vice Chairperson


Secretary
Warren Magee

Members at Large
Owen Doonan
Stephen Reynolds



                            SRC Quarterly Meeting Minutes
                                  March 12, 2009
Present:

Statutory members:

Joe Bellil; Owen Doonan; Warren Magee; Barbara Lybarger; Terry McLaughlin; Maria Husted; Lisa
Chiango; Serena Powell; Stephen Reynolds; Michael Ferriter; Colleen Flanagan; Mark Borneman;
Susan Ventura; Mary M. Moore.

Ex – Officio Members:

Andrea Bader; Jenna Knight; Kevin Goodwin; Hang Lee; Carol Perlino; Francis Verville; Maryan
Amaral; Amy Partelow; Angelica Sawyer; June P. Hailer; Ventura Pereira; Lisa Matrundola; Lisa B.
Corfman;

Guest:

Robert Snierson; Maura Mone; Bob Branscomb

Staff:

Emeka Nwokeji; Ted Mello; Mary Esther Roman; Kasper Goshgarian; Joan Phillips




                                                                                               2
Agenda # 1

The SRC Past Chair, Mr. Bellil started the meeting at about 10:40am with general introductions.

Agenda # 2 Welcome remarks:

Mr. Mello, VR Plymouth office manager in the absence of Mr. Brock VR Regional Director, gave
the welcome remarks. He reported that the VR south district had a very productive year as
highlighted by the RSA report.

The district is noted for it’s high priority in collaboration with the Career Centers, the club houses
and DMH, the supported employment providers and the consumer advisory councils.

Agenda # 3 – Approved of 12/2/2008 combined quarterly meeting and retreat minutes and
notes.

Stephen Reynolds made the motion. Barbara Lybarger second the motion and minutes/notes were
voted favorably.

Agenda # 4 – State Ethics Commission Presentation

Emeka Nwokeji introduced Mr. David Giannotti, who is the Chief Public Education and
Communications Division for the State Ethics Commission since April 2008.

Mr. Giannotti made his power point presentation with the following subject headlines:

   i.   The State Ethics Commission is made up of – public Education, Legal Division /
        Department, Education and the Enforcement of the Ethics rulings.
  ii.   BRIBES – anything of value given or received, directly or indirectly to take or not take as an
        official action via QUID Pro Quo (Corruption) 0% thresholds and criminally enforced.
 iii.   Gratuities - $50 threshold and the Ethics Commission may aggregate the number of
        gratuities.
 iv.    NEPOTISM – A public employee may not in general participate in particular matters in
        which his/her immediate family, a partner, a business or organization with which he/she has
        certain affiliations or someone with whom he/she is negotiating prospective employment has
        a financial interest.
  v.    Code of Conduct: - A public official or employee shall not knowingly act in a manner such
        that a reasonable person might conclude that he/she might act with bias.
        He further explained that a State special employee may not act on the behalf of, or receive
        compensation from, a third party in connection with anything of direct, and connection with
        interest to the State; if you are a State employee, state special employee or if a municipality if
        a municipal employees.

In addition, he translated the State Ethics Commission multiple contacts financial interest in
contracts which stipulates that an employee may not have a financial interest in a contract which the
state, if a state employee, or the municipality if a municipal employee, is an interested party in
contracts to provide goods or services.




                                                                                                         3
In conclusion he provided the SRC with t he Commissions quick-tips when in doubt call (617) 371-
9500 or (888) 485-4766. Visit on the Web at – WWW.Mass.Gov/Ethics.

SRC Chair thanked David for his presentation.

Lunch

Agenda # 6 – MRC Update

Mr. Kasper Goshgarian, Deputy Commissioner in the absence of Commissioner Carr reported that
the Commissioner sent his greeting to the SRC and would be back soon.

   i.   RSA visit – Kasper reported that the RSA monitoring team is visiting MRC to review
        national related issues on how MRC delivers the public Vocational Rehabilitation goals.
  ii.   On the State Budget, Kasper reported on the impact of 9C cuts and the further reduction on
        VR funds in Fy10 Budget. Most 9C monies came out of EEP funds. $2.7 million saved
        from the EEP $6.5 million is being used to enhance the longtime employment support. Other
        Fy 10 cuts can be observed in the Homecare Assistance Program and the effects will be a
        longer waiting list.
 iii.   The Stimulus Package:
        Kasper reported that the MRC VR will be receiving additional monies from the stimulus
        package. Also, the State Independent Living Council/Centers will be getting some additional
        funds. The addition monies will total about $6million. These monies will be obligated for in
        2 year expenses. MRC stimulus package team-headed by Ms. Phillips VR assistant
        Commissioner recommended focus on untraditional VR services; such as on the Job Training
        (OJT) and others on the job experience ventures that may result to employment. The
        stimulus package is not here yet.

        Mr. Doonan asked the Commission to consider providing small business loans to increase
        interest in self employment and Home-Based self employment.

        Ms. Partelow asked the Commission to consider reducing the wait-list with some of the
        stimulus funds.

        Ms Lybarger advised MRC to give the SRC time to work on their list of options.

        June Hailer advised the Commission to purchase VR Vans to assist Consumers going to
        college and others.

        Mr. Warren Magee asked the Commission to consider adding monies in the T-22 program,
        the ICC program and the SRC functions.

        Ms. Matrundola announced that the WIB will receive a stimulus package and it would be
        good for WIB and MRC to collaborate in reducing unemployment rate for persons with
        disabilities.

        Mr. Doonan suggested re-visiting the options of offering VR transportation assistance
        services such as the Good News Garage.



                                                                                                   4
Ms. Chiango advised the commission to consider enhancing the Deaf communication access
for job interviews and feed back.

Ms. Flanagan asked if consumers from the EEP Program can benefit from the stimulus
monies.

Mr. Reynolds advised the Commission to look into the SRC conflict of interest aura because
we are loosing good talents of some of the council’s members.

Deputy Commissioner ascertained that most of the topics raised by the council are in the
works and asked the council to formalize its list for the Commission to study.

The Council formed a taskforce to work on formalizing the SRC stimulus list; headed by Ms.
Barbara Lybarger and Mr. Owen Doonan.

Ms. Lybarger – Cap Representative asked the Council to voted favorably for the commission
to add one more hearing officers to the fair-hearing team. She recommended Ms. Sarah M.
who is an attorney with nursing background for the new appointments. Motion was made by
Ms. Mary M. Moore; Seconded by Mr. Doonan and was voted favorably.

Agenda # 7 – RSA Team Visits

The SRC introduced its members before the RSA team headed by Mr. Tom Macey – regional
liaison officer/NE States.

The RSA is on a 4 year routine visit to MRC and SRC. They are here to provide technical
assistance to MRC and SRC; only after knowing how the VR program service is delivered in
the State. This monitoring visitation is to assist state VR in continuous improvement and
performance which only benefit persons with disabilities.

For the SRC, RSA team is interested in understanding how the SRC interacts with MRC and
the way SRC provides input in the MRC – VR State Plan development. This is also an
opportunity for SRC members to ask RSA question and clarification as indicated in the
annual plan reports.

Mr. Doonan affirmed that the SRC and MRC confront each other, especially when budget
constrains forces needs to change or modify regulations. In addition he asked RSA to
witness the annual consumer conference, a one day educational seminar addressing both VR
and IL trainings. This is a model to be funded by RSA said Mr. Doonan.

Ms. Jenna Knight introduced the LD/ADHD task force of the SRC; whose genesis
compliments the structural functions of the SRC. The task force has worked on VR code for
LD categories and presently working with the Independent Living Centers to educate the ILC
on how to serve persons with LD / ADHD.

Mr. Francis Verville asked the RSA to attempt to change the federal formula on the
allocating of VR funds to the States.




                                                                                             5
Ms. June Hailer asked the RSA to study the effectiveness of the ICC program and fund it. It
helps the VR Staff to do their job. She reported on the benefits of the MRC Homecare
Assistance Program and the Workings of the SRC Transportation task Force.

Ms. Lybarger acknowledged the SRC 2day retreats for Strategic Planning as highly valuable
with guiding philosophy and principles.

Mr. Magee acknowledged the value of the RSA/SRC national E-module training manual; as
a valuable tool.

Ms. MM Moore asked the RSA for clarification in SRC issues with references to SRC
membership nomination process, State Plan development and the RSA stand with the
Stimulus Package.

Ms. Lybarger explained that the ethics commission question with reference to the states
conflict of interest is highly complicated. The commission works on a case-by case basis and
it can take up to 3 months to get written answers from the commission. She also asked if the
CAP Program is entitled to get funds from the Stimulus Package.

Ms. Sawyer in addressing the RSA team asked if there are VR codes in other States for the
LD/ADHD population in the public VR.

Ms. Corfman reported on the works of the Artist with disabilities task force.

Mr. Lee asked the RSA team if there is a national initiative to reduce 20% unemployment
rate of people with disabilities.

Mr. Doonan asked the RSA team on how they see the State Rehabilitation Council as an
advocacy body? Secondly what are their perspectives of the partnership between SRC and
MRC?

Ms. Lybarger advised the RSA to revisit the e-module format; it is presently formatted in a
chronological order and she recommended changing the format to run by subject domain.

Ms. McLaughlin highlighted the need for the enhanced federal training in youth transition
planning and implementations.

Meeting adjourned at about 3:35pm

Respectfully Submitted:

Secretary – SRC.




                                                                                              6
                          Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission
                                _______________________
                                  State Rehabilitation Council
                                         27 Wormwood Street
                                              Suite 600
                                          Boston, MA 02210
                                            617-204-3665

Chairperson
Youcef “Joe” Bellil

Vice Chairperson
Serena Powell

Secretary
Warren Magee

Members at Large
Owen Doonan
Stephen Reynolds



                                  SRC Quarterly Meeting
                                      June 11, 2009

Present:

Statutory Members:

Susan Ventura PhD., Colleen Flanagan, Nick Kaltsas, Joe Bellil, Pat Sheely, Barbara Lybarger, Terri
Mclaughlin, Michael Ferriter, Lisa Chiango, Owen Doonan, Warren Magee, Commissioner Carr.

Ex-Officio Members:

Jenna Knight, June Hailer, Francis Verville, Kevin Goodwin, Carol Perlino; Ann Marie Paulson,
Maryann Amaral, Neil Sullivan, Kristen Britton, Angelica Sawyer, Andrea Bader, Betty J. King,
Amy Partelow, Kevin Goodwin.

Staff:

Sue Comeau, Carol Langevin, Robert S. Cohen, Lorraine Barra, Bart Nichols, Charles Vernon,
Richard Arcangeli, Rick Conway, Mary Esther Roman, and Emeka Nwokeji.

Guests:

Rita Sagalyn, Ruth Unger, Kathy Ettandins, Maura Mone.




                                                                                                  7
Agenda 1 General Introduction.

The SRC Chair Mr. Joe Bellil started the meeting about 10:15 am.

Commissioner Carr announced the sudden death of MRC Regional Director, Mr. George Brock.
The late Mr. Brock served the MRC for 14 years. There will be a Memorial Service celebrating Mr.
Brock’s life at 1 pm at a church in Dorchester. The SRC observed a moment of silence for Georges
passing away.

Agenda 2 Welcome Remarks

The SRC Chair introduced Ms. Lorraine Barra, North Region Director, who gave the SRC welcome
remarks. Ms Barra also gave the SRC an update of the Regional VR activities for the year. Ms.
Barra reported that approaching FY09 the region is on track to meet most of its yearly goals.

The region focused on enhancing its job placement target with 14 Job Placement Counselors
deployed statewide. Other regional initiatives include but are not limited to working with 3 active
Statewide Employers Board, partnering with EOHHS on the Assistive Technology agenda, working
collaboratively with Regional Career Centers, oversee the 5 year transitional grant for Youth with
Disabilities. The regions general motto is Jobs!, Jobs!!, Jobs!!!

The SRC Chair thanked Lorraine for the wonderful welcome remarks and report.

Agenda 3 Approval of March 12, 2009 SRC meeting minutes.

A Motion to accept the SRC March 12, 2009 meeting minutes was made, second and voted
favorably.

Agenda 4 SRC Chairs Update

Mr. Bellil announced that Ms Serena Powell, Past Vice Chair has had to resign from the Council due
to a conflict of interest. Mr. Bellil informed the Council that he had good communication with the
State Ethics Commission and they have made it clear that he (Joe Bellil) has no conflict being a
statutory member of the Council.

   o Mr. Bellil reported that the SRC Executive Committee is working with the notes from the
     SRC retreats. The Committee is looking at formulating the SRC Vision, Mission Statement
     and Core Values.
   o In summation Mr. Bellil introduced Mr. Mitchell Zahn as the new Assistant Commissioner
     for the Community Living Department.

Agenda 5 MRC Commissioner’s Update

Commissioner Carr reported that the MRC was audited and the audit report highlighted one concern
among others that our order of selection is problematic. There are a very high percentage of people
served by the MRC/VR in Priority 1.




                                                                                                      8
Mr. Kasper Goshgarian, Deputy Commissioner added to Commissioner Carr’s report and explained
the RSA’s perception of and interpretation; which is consumers on our waiting list should not be
engaged while on the waiting list.

The SRC-MRC will be setting up a team with VR Assistant Commissioner to study this issue
further.

   o There will be a second single state audit on the MRC financial system.
   o The MRC will receive about 6 million dollars in AARA stimulus funding in two phases. The
     first three million dollars must be encumbered by September 30, 2009. The MRC plans to
     hire six job placement specialists to carry out rigorous duties in the economic development
     sectors. This is where job growth in Biotech, Wind and Solar energy are anticipated. People
     with disabilities are currently not part of this new employment and market sector, said
     Commissioner Carr.
   o The six job placement counselors may be retained by the MRC after the two year AARA
     agenda.


Commissioner Carr introduced Ms. Maura Mone, who is with the Disability and Employment Policy
Group at UMass Center for Heath Policy and Research. Ms. Mone translated that the Policy and
Research group has a5 year grant, namely MICEO grant. The MRC is a partner in advancing the
grant. The grant will provide the opportunity to re-engineer the MRC-VR program. Presently
through on RFR process the grant is seeking to establish a regional collaborative map with 3 -5
organizations at about a $250,000 cost.

Other MICEO initiative and with the vision of the MRC Commissioner is to engage the organization
for Justice which will collaborate in the development of the grant work over time.

Susan Ventura asked if the grant work will have anything to do with the SRC Unserved/Underserved
population Committee work. Maura acknowledged that the MICEO grant is working in tandem with
Employment Now, an advocacy group who is promoting the State to be a model employer. The
target is to get people with disabilities work.

Ms. Barbara Lybarger and the MOD are key players in drafting the Governor’s initiative. She
announced that the Governor plans to announce his Executive Order in support of the State as model
employer at the end of June.

Commissioner Carr announced that the FY10 State Budget is fair to the MRC but speculated that
FY11 will be worse than the FY10 budget shortfalls. He establishes the sense that MRC staff morale
is low. But the MRC continues to build positive alliances with sister agencies and the Labor
department.

The SRC Chair congratulated the Commissioner for his work and reports.

Agenda 6 The MRC Ombudsman Report

Mr. Mark Cowell has been the MRC Ombudsman since July 2007. He was welcomed to the
meeting by all. Mr. Cowell reports that his main role in the agency can be envisioned as the conflict



                                                                                                        9
diffuser. He has noticed an increase in calls to his office and most of the calls are from people
wanting to know what the MRC has to offer.

In addition Mark highlighted that he utilizes the SRC/MRC consumer handbooks and refers a lot of
people to the MRC website. Furthermore, he is able to send MRC program and services brochures,
including the Home Care program, SHIP, Project Impact, T-22 program and the 11 Independent
Living Centers.

Furthermore by July 1, 2008, he received 466 inquiries/calls about 410 are definitely MRC related.
Those calls related to consumers in the VR division and are tracked to VR area offices. The key
issues are centered in those contesting the cases closed, eligibility related cases, education,
transportation payments, IEP and transfer of cases among VR area offices. These accumulated to
about 108-110 cases per year.

For the Community Living Department and DDS, key calls are concerned with; 18 for HCAP, 7 for
SHIP, 5 for Vehicle Modifications and Assistive Technology, 6 for Housing Modifications, 6 related
to DDS and 58 others. Mark reports that most of his interaction with consumers is by telephone.

The MRC appeals procedure is carried out as written in the regulations. In the first 3 quarters of the
year, received 45 requests as appealed, 5 for fair hearings and the appeals are broken down as
follows:

   o   18 on education issues.
   o   9 administrative reviews
   o   2 pending.
   o   27 are either resolved or withdrawn.

The Commissioner praised Mark as an excellent Ombudsman, a good listener who balances fairness
with compassion. The SRC asked Emeka to get copies of Mark’s report to SRC members.

Agenda 7 State Plan attachment 4.2C

Owen Doonan, Chair State Plan and Interagency Relations Committee reported that it is through the
VR State Plan attachment 4.2C that the SRC gives the MRC advice. This year the committee came
up with 6 recommendations to the MRC. These recommendations come from the work of the SRC
standing committees, task forces and Consumer regional advisory councils. These recommendations
are sent to the MRC Commissioner and his staff for their reaction and responses.

Furthermore, the Council was made to understand that 3 regional public hearings were held in
Greenfield, Lawrence and Taunton. The public was given the opportunity to make oral
presentations, written statements and individuals who are unable to attend physically, may put their
testimony in writing and mailed to the MRC Policy and Planning Department by June 19, 2009.

Agenda 8 Open Microphone

   o Amy Partelow, West Mass Advisory Council Chair, briefed the Council that the West Region
     State Plan public hearing in Greenfield was attended by the Council members.
   o Maryan Amaral, member Artists with Disabilities Task Force (AWDTF) presented the task
     force request of the MRC. The request was for the AWDTF to create a website off the SRC


                                                                                                       10
       linkages. This site is purely meant to market the artists and will require a web manager to
       update the artist’s profiles and materials. The AWDTF is asking the MRC fir approximately
       $3,000.00 for the webmaster and $1,500.00 for the web maintenance. The Commissioner
       advised representative of AWDTF to meet with the MRC webmaster for education and to
       ensure compliance with state IT contracts.
   o   Mike Ferriter, addressing the Council and revisited the SRC letter of support to the Spinal
       Cord Injury (SCI) Trust Fund. He pleaded with the SRC to modify its support letter because
       the bill was amended seeking 100% of the funds generated by the bill to go to SCI research.
       The Commissioner and the SRC Chair asked for consultation with the MRC legal
       department. The SRC Chair will follow up with the Commissioner and Emeka.
   o   Rita Sagalyn, from NAMI informed the Council that NAMI is extending its invitation and
       wants to enhance its relations with the SRC. NAMI is working on issues related to education
       and employment. Commissioner Holmes of the Department of Mental Health (DMH) has
       laid out new initiatives and directives for the agency. There are numerous opportunities
       which might be areas of good collaboration in working with the MRC and the SRC;
       especially in the area of community collaborations.
   o   Kathy T., in introducing herself to the council as coming from the state of California to
       Massachusetts in 1999. Presently she is an MRC consumer and attends the Mass. School of
       Law. She reported that she is having problems dealing with Social Security benefits, getting
       information to make an informed choice, etc. The Council’s Chair, advised her to submit a
       written statement via the State Plan attachment 4.2C public hearing comment period or send
       it to Emeka Nwokeji.
   o   Jenna Knight, thanked the Commissioner and the MRC for refunding the Learning
       Disability/attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (LD/ADHD) support group in FY10.
   o   Betty J. King, invited Kathy T. to join the SRC Underserved/Unserved population
       committee.

In a closing remark, the SRC Chair asked all the SRC Committee to deliberate on legitimate issues
relative to SRC business and maintain the SRC ethics.

Agenda 9 Annual Consumer Conference

Dr. Susan Ventura, Co-Chair of the Annual Consumer Conference Planning Committee announced
that this year’s annual conference is all set to go on June 18, 2009. The conference location will be
at Northeastern University, Curry Student Center. Dr. Fogg of Northeastern Universities
Department of Labor Economics will be the Conference guest speaker.

Ann Marie Paulson, Co-Chair thanked the Commissioner for providing the SRC and Consumer
Involvement Program the funds to conduct this years conference. She also thanked Dr. Ventura and
the Northeastern University authorities for agreeing to host the Conference again this year.

Dr. Ventura reported that the University will waive the fee for the conference site, but will charge a
minimal fee for parking, policy duties, signs, etc.

Ms. Paulson reported that about 300 people are registered for the Conference. In addition, the
Conference Workshop RFR Team has done its job and selected 16 workshops for the Conference.

The Commissioner thanked Northeastern University for their in kind contributions to the
Conference.


                                                                                                     11
Agenda 10 Consent Agenda

A motion to accept the Consent Agenda was seconded and voted favorably.

Agenda 11 Unserved/Underserved Population Committee

Mr. Warren Magee announced that he has been appointed by the SRC Chair as this Committee’s
Chair. The SRC by-law calls on Standing Committees to be chaired only by statutory members of
the council.

Warren congratulated Ms. Betty J. King for having chaired the committee for more than 8 years.

Warren reported that the committee’s agenda to hold regionally based focus groups has been
presented to Commissioner Carr. The committee awaits his approval to move forward.

Dr. Ventura supporting the Committee’s focus group agenda reported the availability to get the
agenda funded through the NIH grant. The NIH grant on NCMH disparities grant parallels the focus
group agenda. This is a 2 year grant for up to $350,000 and it is due by June 20, 2009. She
anticipated writing a proposal on behalf of her work at NU and the SRC. A research proposal
designed to reduce services related disparities in minority groups. The principal players in her
proposal will be NU, the MRC and the SRC; using the concept mapping software.

Mr. Owen Doonan made the motion to support the proposal as described by Dr. Ventura; Warren
Magee seconded the motion and was voted favorably.

Observations:

   1. Ms. Barbara Lybarger, Co-Chair SRC Stimulus Package Task Force, asked if there was a
      response from the MRC.
   2. Mr. Owen Doonan wanted the Commissioner to learn that the MRC responses to the SRC
      State Plan recommendation was not inspirational and does not speak to the future. His
      Committee would like to know what is new and different in the MRC.
   3. The SRC would advise the MRC to take the Order of Selection Studies with the SRC policy
      and regulations committees.

The meeting adjourned at about 2:20 pm.

Respectfully Submitted
Warren Magee, Secretary




                                                                                                 12
                          Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission
                                _______________________
                                  State Rehabilitation Council
                                         27 Wormwood Street
                                              Suite 600
                                          Boston, MA 02210
                                            617-204-3665

Chairperson
Youcef “Joe” Bellil

Vice Chairperson
Warren Magee

Secretary
Owen Doonan

Members at Large
                                SRC Quarterly Meeting Minutes
                                     September 10, 2009



Present:

Statutory Members:

Owen Doonan, Joe Bellil, Mark Bornemann, Pat Sheely, Nick Kaltsas, Susan Ventura, PhD, Warren
Magee, Barbara Lybarger, Colleen Flanagan, Commissioner Charles Carr

Ex-Officio Members

Amy Partelow, Neil Sullivan, Maryan Amaral, Francis Verville, Willie Parks, David Libunao, Susan
Demers, June Hailer, Kevin Goodwin, Reva Stein, Andrea Bader, Betty J. King, Liza Matrundola,
Christiana Erekosima

Staff

Lisa Weber, Emeka Nwokeji, Tim Ploof, Cheryl Marrewa, Jorge Messmer, Neil McNeil, Kate
Angelini.

Guests

Kathy Ettendip, Maria Malagutti, Laverne Howard, Maura Mone, Robert Conner,


The SRC Chair, Mr. Joe Bellil started the meeting at about 10:45 a.m. After general introductions,
Mr. Bellil introduced Mr. Neil McNeil. Mr. McNeil gave the welcome remarks in the absence of
Mr. Ed Magnini Regional VR Director.

In welcoming the SRC to the West Region Mr. McNeil recognized the West Region Area Directors
in attendance.



                                                                                                     13
The VR Regional Area Offices provide high quality VR Services to the consumer. These services
are enriched through other VR related initiatives:

   o The region hosts two transitional project’s at the Worcester and Springfield offices. This
     transitional project is a new concept geared to students with disabilities using specialized
     placement staff.
   o The American Recovery Reinvestment Act (ARRA)-stimulus money is being deployed with
     eight job placement specialists that target the employers sector.
   o Other regional collaborations in Worcester and Springfield assist with meeting regional
     employment goals. In particular the UMASS Medical infrastructure grant.

   The SRC Chair thanked Mr. McNeil for the warm welcome and remarks.

   Agenda #1 SRC June 13 th meeting minutes approval.
   Motion to approve the SRC June 13 th meeting minutes was made, seconded and voted upon
   favorably.

   Agenda #2 MRC Commissioner’s update
   The Commissioner reported that all State Agency heads have been given targets for the FY10 9C
   cuts. He assured the Council that MRC Senior Staff know where the 9C cuts will come from
   and these cuts will not affect consumers.

   In addition, he announced that the cuts in the FY11 State funds will be devastating and may
   translate to the elimination of State Programs.

   Commissioner Carr requested the Council to develop strategies with the MRC based on what
   could be offered up to produce the least impact on the consumers we serve. The Commissioner
   further advised, that via the MRC’s spend plan, which was submitted to the Secretary of
   EOHHS, MRC that he does not anticipate any cuts at this time.

   The SRC advised the Commissioner to provide them with the Agency Budget broken down to
   line items and appropriations. In doing this, the SRC asked the Commissioner to show the
   Council how the State funds are spent in all VR and CL divisions. Mark Bornemann expressed
   high interest in the agency budget breakdown and was reassured by the Commissioner that this
   information can be provided willingly.

   The Commissioner reported on the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA),
   stating that the Agency has completed its first round of economic stimulus project planning. The
   first round funds were focused on getting the agency web-based case management system up and
   working. ARRA funds were also allocated purchase over 200 notebooks/computers for VR
   counselors to complete the mobile web-based case management systems. This will greatly
   improve efficiency and outcome for counselors in the field.

   Commissioner Carr asked the VR Assistant Commissioner, Ms. Joan Philips, to report on the
   shift in hiring more VR job placement staff. Ms Philips reported that the agency VR division
   will hire about 19 VR Counselors which will be divided into 6 job placement specialists and 10
   employment specialists’ positions. These new staff members will be deployed in the field.



                                                                                                    14
Ms. Maura Mone was introduced by Commissioner Carr to report on the Mass. Disability
Employment Initiatives through the UMASS Medical School in partnership with the Executive
offices of Health and Human Services (EOHHS).

Ms. Mone reported that this initiative supports several projects to improve the State Employment
Services delivery system including the funding of 5 regional collaborative across the state, to
include one regional collaborative with the Berkshire ARC. Other regional collaborative
initiatives will be located in Metro West, Boston, Bristol and Dedham areas. These initiatives
plan to work with the SRC and Consumer Involvement, as well as with labor and workforce
development boards and the Northeastern University-Paul Harrington study group.

Ms. Philips reported that the VR department is facing a challenging but exciting time. There are
plans to make internal changes which will improve the VR service delivery system such as:

   o Change the way MRC-VR wait list is determined.
   o Improve on timelines of delivering services.
   o Using the stimulus funds to enhance the marketing of VR through changes in the look of
     our brochure. She further noted that UMASS is highly involved with our marketing and
     media strategies.

The SRC Chair thanked the Commissioner and his staff for the updates.

Agenda #3 SRC Election of the Executive Officers.
The SRC past Chair, Mr. Joe Bellil announced the workings of the SRC Joint By-Law and
Nomination Committee which was not able to provide the council with a full slate of candidates
for the SRC Executive Offices. In addition some potential or interested SRC members awaiting
statutory appointments received nominations for the SRC Executive Offices. This was
unacceptable due to By-law and RSA rule conflicts, which were so noted by the council.

The past Chair offered two options:

   1. To waiver the election today and wait for the appointments process to be completed.
   2. Seek a motion from a SRC Statutory Member who has served a minimum of one term to
      conduct an election today.

Barbara Lybarger made the motion to conduct the election today which was, seconded by
Warren Magee and voted favorably. She was asked by Mr. Bellil to conduct the floor
nomination and election via a secret ballot vote. The ballots were distributed to past and present
statutory SRC members-Joe Bellil, Owen Doonan, Pat Sheely, Warren Magee, and Barbara
Lybarger.

The nominations from the floor are as follows:

Joe Bellil-Chairperson-accepted
Warren Magee and Stephen Reynolds-Vice-Chairperson – accepted
Secretary – Owen Doonan – accepted
Members at large – Pat Sheely and Barbara Lybarger– both declined
Stephen Reynolds – stated he only wanted the vice-chairperson position and declined the
member at large nomination.


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A motion to close the nominations at this point was made and voted favorably.

Barbara Lybarger collected and tallied the ballots. The election results are as follows:
SRC Chairperson – Joe Bellil
SRC Vice-Chairperson – Warren Magee
SRC Secretary- Owen Doonan

The two member at large-positions were designated to remain vacant until the next election. A
motion was made and approved to accept the election results.

Agenda #4 SRC Mission Statement and Vision Statement
SRC Chairperson Joe Bellil introduced the SRC Executive Mission and Vision statements for the
council’s approval.
Barbara Lybarger made the motion to accept the SRC Mission and Vision statements. Owen
Doonan seconded the motion and the motion was voted favorably. A discussion followed in
which Owen Doonan highlighted that the SRC mission statement should incorporate advocacy
into the document.

Agenda #5 – Open Microphone
Pat Sheely requested that the SRC observe a moment of silence in memory of Senator Ted
Kennedy.

Maria Malaguti requested approval of an additional $1000 to complete her ICC project on hidden
disabilities.

Jenna Knight announced the availability of the LD/ADHD meeting minutes.

Betty J. King inquired about the status of those people who have been interested and applied to
become SRC statutory members.

David Libuano complimented the Commissioner for supporting the use of the ARRA funds to
purchase computer notebooks for field VR counselors.

Kathy Ettendip asked for information about the Disability Law Office and what they do.

Christiana Erekosima announced that housing advocacy and assistance needs collaboration and
trust from the MRC. Commissioner Carr acknowledged that the MRC is collaborating with
DHCD who has the housing certificates and vouchers. He emphasized that the MRC-CL
division and VR division are working on improving collaboration strategies.

Joe Bellil advised Emeka to distribute the list of consumers who are awaiting their SRC
appointments.

Agenda #6 –Unserved/Underserved Populations Committee Report
Warren Magee, Chairperson, stated they are committed to conducting 4 to 5 regional focus
groups. The next scheduled meeting of September 24 th is to clarify the role of the facilitator and
Northeastern University. Dr. Sue Ventura of Northeastern University has been invited to this
meeting to give a presentation.


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Agenda #7 SRC-VR Needs Assessment Report
Andrea Trull of the MRC’s Research and Program Evaluation department reported that the VR
Needs Assessment survey identified five areas of importance:
    Transportation. About 50% of survey respondents use public transportation
    Housing
    Financial Benefits Counseling
    Job Training and Education
    Job Search assistance
   The recommendation to the SRC is to seek information on how the ARRA stimulus fund can
   assist in addressing some of these needs.

   Andrea also reported that the agency is recommending future needs assessments to be an
   electronic survey instead of a paper survey. The electronic survey will be beta tested via
   Survey Monkey.

   Emeka Nwokeji announced that the RSA recommended a new methodology of conducting
   the needs assessment. This new method calls for outreach to unserved populations through
   middle to high school counselors.

   Dr. Ventura acknowledged that she is very familiar with Survey Monkey and promotes it as a
   successful method. Mr. Nwokeji further suggested that the SRC form a needs assessment
   task force to consider the new RSA method. The SRC prioritized the new method of
   conducting the VR needs assessment to the SRC executive agenda.

   Agenda #8 SRC Consumer Satisfaction Survey
   Owen Doonan, Committee Chair, introduced Dr. Mary Esther Rohman to report on the key
   findings of the 2008 survey. Dr. Rohman reported that 1,223 consumers responded to the
   survey and this is a 23.5 response rate. Consumer satisfaction was higher in this year’s
   survey particularly among cases that were successfully closed in competitive employment.
   In addition, unsuccessfully closed cases were less satisfied in regard to choice of services and
   lack of consumer control over their IPE.

   The council highlighted that the report was not made available to the council members in
   advance of the meeting. Joe Bellil asked Emeka Nwokeji to make sure the report was
   disseminated electronically to all members.

   Joe Bellil thanked the ex-officio members for their presence and interest. The meeting
   adjourned at 2:30PM

   Respectfully submitted

   Secretary, Owen Doonan




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