MINUTES of the Board of Directors of CNY Works, Inc., held on Wednesday, October 25,
2006, at 8:00 A.M. at 443 North Franklin Street, Lower Level, Syracuse, New York 13204:
PRESENT ABSENT STAFF GUESTS
Colella, Anthony Atkins, Mike Agostini, Robert Budge, Tania (Testone Marshall
Coria, JoAnn Brynien, Kenneth Coughlin, Mary Joan & Discenza)
Di Blasi, James Dowdell, Jesse Fellows, Roger Evans, Gregg (Testone Marshall
Hill, Carol Falcone, Neil Martinez, Manny & Discenza)
Kotz, Kathy Fellows, James Pitt, Heather Draper, Sue (Cardinal Health)
La Grow, Kevin Harper, William Schnobrich, Andrea Hoke, Brian (Bentley & Hoke)
MacKool, Linda Higgins, Marilyn Sealy, Lenore Pete, Kathleen (NYS Department
Mayne, Janice Lott, Reverend Bill Sticco, Sue of Labor
Meinking, Rebecca Pulver, Mark Wilson, Lori Sorbello, Joseph (NYS
Napier, Donald Rapp, Kathy VanGelder, Jocelyn Department of Labor)
Owens, Kelli Stack, Barbara
Reed, Marvin Sydow, Dr. Debbie
Ryan, William Towsley, William
Sandle, Gail Wolgemuth, Diana
I. Call to Order
James DiBlasi, Chairperson, called the meeting to order at 8:05 A.M. A quorum was present.
Jim DiBlasi welcomed Carol Hill, Assistant to the President of the Greater Syracuse
Chamber of Commerce, as a new member of the Board.
III. Approval of Minutes: August 23, 2006
The time of the meeting was incorrectly listed in the first paragraph of the Minutes as 7:30
A.M.; the meeting time was 8:00 A.M.
Don Napier entered a motion:
To approve the Minutes, with the meeting time changed to 8:00 A.M., as described above,
from the Board meeting of August 23, 2006.
Gail Sandle seconded the motion. The motion was carried unanimously.
IV. Presentation: Program Year 2004 Audit – Gregg Evans, Testone Marshall & Discenza
Board members received the CNY Works audited financial statements and Program Year
2004 Audit Report, recently completed by Testone Marshall & Discenza. These documents
will be maintained with the official record of this meeting.
Gregg Evans, representing Testone et al, used the financial statements and written report as
background and provided the Board with a summary of the audit:
Testone Marshall & Discenza is currently conducting the field work for CNY
Works’ Program Year 2005 audit.
The Audit Report that the Board is reviewing today is for the period ending June
The Financial Statements, Page 1, provide the independent auditor’s opinion of
CNY Works’ financial statements, and report that the statements fairly represent
CNY Works’ financial position.
Kathy Kotz entered a motion:
To accept the Audit Report and the financial statements, as presented by Testone
Marshall & Discenza, of CNY Works for December 31, 2005 and 2004.
Rebecca Meinking seconded the motion. The motion was carried unanimously.
V. Presentation: CNY Works’ Website – Brian Hoke, Bentley & Hoke
Brian Hoke, owner of Bentley & Hoke and CNY Works’ web developer, provided the Board
with a presentation of CNY Works’ newly recreated website. Brian Hoke showed the site to
the Board and reported:
The new website has been live since October 24 at 7:00 P.M.
The primary goal of the new site was to improve customer services and to give
CNY Works’ staff the ability to easily update the site.
The new site has more information and the information is organized better.
The site is visually interesting and aesthetically pleasing.
CNY Works serves a wide range of constituents, and the website is designed to
appeal to that variety of people.
Photographs used on the site are authentic; having been taken by Roger Fellows,
DoES supervisor; and help to lend credibility and authenticity to the site.
There is more information displayed at the site and the information is more
organized than it had been in the past. It is also easier for site visitors to obtain
information from the new site.
Web content is managed through an application, Multi-Leaf. A limited number
of staff will have access to the content management software so that the site will
be properly managed. Currently, Heather Pitt and Roger Fellows are the only
staff authorized to make changes to the site.
Lenore Sealy encouraged Board members to provide feedback on the website. Heather Pitt
added that there is a link on the site, firstname.lastname@example.org, where anyone can leave a
suggestion about the website.
VI. Executive Committee Report - Jim DiBlasi
The Executive Committee met on October 18, 2006. Board members received a copy of the
Executive Committee Notes (goldenrod sheets) – includes WIA Performance Summary
Report, PY 2005 (Annual), CNY Works’ Revised Meeting Schedule, Program Year 2006,
CNY Works Board of Directors (contact list), Journey 2 Jobs Community Conversation Two
(blue sheet) and J2J Areas of Concern: Information Chart. These documents will be
maintained with the official record of this meeting.
Jim DiBlasi reported to the Board on behalf of the Executive Committee. Using the
Executive Committee Notes and supporting materials, referenced above, as background, Jim
1. Audit Committee
The Audit Committee will provide this report later in the meeting.
2. Workforce Summit
The Workforce Summit will take place on Thursday, March 29, 2006. Ed Barlow will be
the keynote speaker. Gail Sandle will report on this item later in the meeting. Any Board
member who wishes to receive further information on the Summit should contact Lenore
VII. Finance Committee Report – Don Napier
The Finance Committee met on October 11, 2006. The Board received copies of CNY Works
Budget vs. Actual through 8/31/06 (with footnotes) and Consolidated Balance Sheet October
5, 2006, CNY Works, Inc. These documents will be maintained with the official record of
Don Napier reported to the Board on behalf of the Finance Committee. Using the
documents, referenced above, as background, Don Napier reported:
In light of the Board’s recent establishment of the Audit Committee, the Finance
Committee began to consider its role/charter as compared with the role of the
The CNY Works Budget vs. Actual shows the budget, as previously approved by
the Board. The budget was approved at a time when CNY Works anticipated a
26% cut in WIA funding for PY 06. In reality, CNY Works’ PY 06 WIA funds
were cut approximately 11%. Thus, CNY Works has spent a smaller proportion
of its available funds than had been planned through the adopted budget. The
NYS Department of Labor has increased its pressure for CNY Works to increase
its rate of spending to achieve the requirement that at least 70% of the current
year’s WIA grants be expended by the end of the program year.
The Finance Committee is interested in having new members. If there are any
Board members interested in learning about the financial details associated with
the grants, they should consider becoming a Finance Committee member.
Bob Agostini, CNY Works’ Chief Financial Officer, has offered to provide
interested Board members with an in-depth session, explaining CNY Works’
financial processes and procedures.
Testone Marshall and Discenza stated that CNY Works is one of the most
complicated not-for-profit organizations that there is.
VIII. Audit Committee Report – Don Napier
Don Napier reported to the Board on behalf of the Audit Committee. He reported:
The Audit Committee had its first meeting on October 18, 2006.
The Committee agreed that it would be more appropriate to have another member
of the Audit Committee serve as Chairperson, rather than Don Napier who is the
Board Treasurer and Finance Committee Chairperson.
The Committee discussed its charter with Testone Marshall & Discenza.
The Committee developed a draft charter to clarify the Audit Committee’s role
and responsibilities. Some of the Committees responsibilities will include: audit
process, selection of auditors and scope of each audit. The Committee will
publish its charter as soon as possible.
Bob Agostini will respond to the PY 2004 Audit. The Audit Report’s
management letter outlines some of the issues that CNY Works has already
resolved. There are a few outstanding items that CNY Works needs to address.
The Committee will meet to review the details of the PY 2005 Audit Report. The
Committee will present the Audit Report to the Board it the next meeting.
IX. Youth Council – Andrea Schnobrich
The Youth Council met on Friday, September 17, 2006. Board members received a copy of
the minutes from the Youth Council. Andrea Schnobrich, CNY Works’ Youth Services
Manager, reported to the Board on behalf of the Youth Council.
Using the Youth Council Minutes as background, Ms. Schnobrich reported:
1. Partnership for Youth
CNY Works will participate with the Onondaga County Department of Aging and
Youth and Syracuse University’s Leadership Institute in a grant, a Partnership for
Five-year initiative to serve high risk, WIA-eligible youth, aged 17 to 21 years old.
Program will provide individualized services to assist those youth who are most in
need, and often not adequately served through traditional workforce programs.
Youth targeted by the project will include: runaway and homeless youth, those
involved in the juvenile justice system, youthful offenders, foster care youth
(including unaccompanied refugee minors) and those in need of general youth
Services may include activities that support emotional, vocational, educational and
other needs that can help individuals reach their individual goals.
2. CNY Works’ Youth Program Design
The Workforce Investment Act introduced significant changes for youth
programming at the local level.
Focus on youth development activities that will reinforce positive social skills in
Legislation mandates strong ties with the business community, not only as employers,
but also in an expanded role as advisors, funders, trainers and economic developers.
WIA youth program increases emphasis on academic learning as it connects to the
WIA requires a stronger focus on out-of-school youth.
Services must have longer-term services to assure youth attachment to and
advancement within the labor market.
All Workforce Investment Act (WIA) youth programs must include ten program
Each youth must be assessed to determine which (one or more) program elements
will help the individual youth attain his/her workforce goals.
3. Request for Qualifications
CNY Works recently developed a Request for Qualifications (RFQ) for youth
program services to help fortify the ten elements available for local WIA youth
Any entity that could provide WIA-eligible youth services through one or more of the
ten program elements could potentially become a vendor through the RFQ.
Vendors will provide services to youth through a fee-for service approach.
Some of the entities who have responded to the RFQ include Aurora, OCM BOCES,
Onpoint for College, Syracuse University’s Leadership Institute, Huntington Family
Center and the Syracuse City School District.
The Youth Council is currently reviewing the proposals and following up with
vendors when there are additional questions.
CNY Works is also working with other vendors to develop RFQ responses to ensure
that CNY Works has developed a strong variety of services and activities that fulfill
the required ten WIA program elements.
4. Operational Planning
CNY Works’ Youth Team developing operational plan to ensure that youth service
design accomplishes the WIA youth program goals.
Youth team operational planning meeting held on Tuesday, October 24, 2006. Kathy
Hanna facilitated the meeting.
X. Executive Director’s Report – Lenore Sealy
Lenore Sealy reported the following:
1. State Issues
a. CNY Works’ PY 05 Performance
See WIA Performance Summary Report, PY 2005 (Annual), attached to Executive
CNY Works failed four (out of 17) of its performance standards for PY 2005 -
Dislocated Worker Earnings Change and three Youth – Older Youth Entered
Employment, Older Youth Earnings Change and Older Youth Credential
Attainment Dislocated Worker
Carrier’s 2004 dislocation had a huge impact on the Dislocated Worker Earnings
Change measure. The individuals included in the exit cohort for this measure
obtained employment at a significantly lower wage than what they had been
earning while they were employed at Carrier. Although these individuals were
primarily trained through Trade Act funds, CNY Works was required to enroll
each one in WIA, and therefore the individuals were counted in the WIA
The other performance measures that CNY Works failed were in the WIA youth
programs. Earlier in the year when it became apparent that youth performance
was floundering, CNY Works decided that it needed to redefine how youth
services are delivered. Performance largely drove the decision to redefine and
reorganize how CNY Works delivers these services. Hiring Andrea Schnobrich
as Youth Services Manager was the first step in that change. She was promoted
to provide a new direction for CNY Works youth services. WIA youth services
are much more than a summer program; they are a year-round workforce
development program for youth.
There is back-up detail on all the performance issues if any Board members are
interested in learning more about these issues.
The Programs and Services Committee will be working with staff to consider
means of improving program performance.
With common measures CNY Works performance will be measured in different
ways. With this first year of functional alignment and common measures, the
State will not impose its sanction policies for failing a performance standard for
two consecutive years.
b. CNY Works’ Spending
CNY Works spending is less than the 70% threshold sought by the NYS
Department of Labor. CNY Works has not spent its WIA funds as aggressively
as the State would like. The State requires that each local area spend a minimum
of 70% of its grant in the current year; CNY Works is not on track to do that.
CNY Works carried over a large surplus from PY 05 into PY 06, and must fully
expend its PY 05 funds before it begins to use PY 06 funding.
At the direction of the Board, CNY Works has initiated policies and procedures to
ensure that WIA funds are being spent appropriately with proper internal controls.
Additionally, CNY Works will use WIA funds to support the greater workforce
development needs of the community.
c. Workforce Summit – Gail Sandle provided the Board with the following update of
the workforce summit.
The first Community Conversation, The Workforce Challenge, took place on
October 4, 2006. It was a very exciting session with standing room only. The
speakers were John Twomey, Executive Director of NYATEP, and Lou Jean
Fleron, Economic Initiatives Director at the Institute for Industry Studies, Cornell
The second community conversation, Career, Technical and Incumbent Worker
Training, will be held on Friday, October 27, 2006 at OCM BOCES’ Career
Training Center. (The blue sheet on the left-hand side of the Board member
folder is an invitation to this community conversation.) The community
conversation will discuss career and technical education for high school students,
adult training for skills development and new employment; and incumbent worker
training to improve skills among employed workers.
The first community conversation set the stage for the upcoming Summit on
March 29, 2007. Ed Barlow, Futurist, will be keynote speaker of the Summit.
Mr. Barlow is a very compelling and exciting speaker.
Most other local workforce areas have held Workforce Summits. The Planning
Team of this Summit is trying to develop a regional focus by inviting workforce
development, economic development, education and business representatives of
Cayuga, Madison, Oswego and Cortland Counties.
Two charts are included in the packet of Board meeting materials – J2J Areas of
Concern: Information Chart and the Journey 2 Jobs (industrial clusters matrix).
Rebecca Meinking stated that the construction trades should be listed as an
industrial cluster. This suggestion will be brought back to the Summit Planning
There are three Post Standard articles, written by Charley Hannagan, about the
Summit and community conversations included in the Board meeting materials.
The CNY Works Board Meeting Schedule (Revised October 25, 2006) and the CNY Works
Board of Directors October 25, 2006 are included with the Board member’s materials.
Rebecca Meinking entered a motion to adjourn the meeting. Kathy Kotz seconded the
motion. The motion was carried unanimously.
The meeting ended at 9:17 A.M.
XIII. Next Board Meeting: Wednesday, January 17, 2007
Location: CNY Works
443 North Franklin Street, Lower Level
Syracuse, New York 13204
Topic: Audit Report – PY 2005
Lenore S. Sealy