In accordance with the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA), the DOR received $61.8 million in federal stimulus funds for its programs. This includes $56.5 million for vocational rehabilitation (VR), $1.6 million for independent living (IL), and $3.7 million for older blind programs (OIB).
The VR ARRA funds constitute a large one-time infusion of VR state grant funding that offers the opportunity to make short-term program improvements that provide long-term benefits. To date, this has included:
Jobs Created or Retained
Two-hundred forty-eight (248) Full-Time Equivalent jobs have been funded through ARRA. This includes: Retired Annuitants, Student Assistants, Senior Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor (SVRC) graduate student interns and limited term appointments SVRC-QRPs (Qualified Rehabilitation Professional) within the DOR. Also included are DOR Cooperative Partners, Community Rehabilitation Programs (CRP), Independent Living Centers and Older Blind Programs that have ARRA funded staff.
Enhanced and Expanded Consumer Services
Community Rehabilitation Programs and Public Partner Agencies
Over $20 million has been awarded CRPs and Cooperative Partner agencies to make program improvements and to provide enhanced and expanded services to consumers. Currently the DOR has 160 ARRA cooperative contracts and 36 ARRA CRP contracts.
On the Job Training and Self Employment
Approximately 653 on-the-job training contracts have been developed and are in process and over 31 small business opportunities have been created with 52 successful employment outcomes.
Fifty (50) DOR Counselors are participating as Mobile Counselors to assist in the expansion of employment services to unserved and underserved populations.
In May 2010, VR services were opened for 400 consumers on the waiting list, and 151 Individualized Plans for Employment (IPE) were written. Thirteen of these have already achieved successful employment outcomes.
Business Enterprise Program
Nine new BEP facilities are in process, with six of the nine already completed. These are new employment opportunities for consumers who are blind and visually impaired, as well as employees they will hire.
Orientation Center for the Blind
This Project includes: improved training facilities; a conferencing center; dorm improvements, including the addition of studio apartments for independent living; accessibility improvements; seismic upgrades; and installation of an elevator to enable access to the second floor of the dorm.
Architectural drawings were completed and DGS awarded the contract in July 2010.
Construction will be completed by September 30, 2011.
Eleven (11) conferencing endpoints have been installed in DOR districts and are being tested throughout the state. DOR anticipates bringing them online in December 2010.
There are 40 SVRCs/Rehabilitation Supervisors enrolled in Council on Rehabilitation Education (CORE) accredited Master’s Degree programs, three of whom have already graduated.
Over 465 participants have benefitted from 18 ARRA-funded DOR staff training opportunities on the following topics:
Autism Spectrum Disorder (9 trainings);
Diversity in the Workplace (5 trainings);
Diffusing Difficult Situations (3 trainings); and
Information Mapping training (1 training)
In partnership with California State University (CSU) Sacramento, the DOR has hired 65 paid rehabilitation counselor interns in DOR offices throughout California which provide direct services to consumers.
In May 2010 DOR's Deaf and Hard of Hearing Services Section provided Support Services Assistant Interpreter (SSAI) Skills Training for 28 participants.
One-hundred forty-eight (148) DOR counselors and other staff are increasing job skills through ARRA-funded upward mobility training opportunities. This training will improve DOR's capability to provide services to consumers.
SRC in 2010
About the State Rehabilitation Council
The Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended in 1998 (the Act), requires that consumers, advocates and other representatives of individuals with disabilities be integral to the administration and oversight of a state's vocational rehabilitation services. In California, this mandate is fulfilled by the State Rehabilitation Council (SRC), established in accordance with Section 105 of the Act. The Governor-appointed SRC consists of a diverse membership interested in, and representative of, Californians with disabilities. It is the mission of the California SRC, in partnership with the DOR, to assure that all Californians with disabilities are represented, informed, and empowered; receive necessary, sufficient and timely individualized services; and that these services are excellent and lead to meaningful employment.
It is the role of the SRC to review, evaluate and advise the DOR regarding its specific and overall performance and effectiveness. This role is carried out to ensure the highest level of service delivery, employment outcomes, and consumer satisfaction possible. In partnership with the DOR, SRC develops, agrees to, and reviews State Plan goals and priorities, and evaluates the effectiveness of vocational rehabilitation services provided under the Act. SRC also advises and assists the DOR in the preparation of the plans, reports, needs assessments and evaluations required by the Act.
State Rehabilitation Council Members
The SRC ended FFY 2010 with no vacancies in the mandated representation. The following individuals served during FFY 2010, representing the categories mandated under 29 United State Code (USC) Section 725(b):
One representative of the Statewide Independent Living Council established under Section 705 of the Rehabilitation Act (the Act)
Teddie-Joy Remhild, Burbank: Appointed September 23, 2010, to replace Rycharde Martindale Essington, Claremont, who resigned March 4, 2010
One representative of a Parent Training and Information Center established pursuant to section 671 of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA)
Jane Floethe-Ford, San Jose: Appointed December 17, 2009
One representative of the Client Assistance Program (CAP) established under section 112 of the Act
Steve Klemin, Seal Beach: Reappointed December 17, 2009
One qualified Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor (as DOR staff, this representative serves in an ex-officio, non-voting capacity)
LeNae Liebetrau, Santa Cruz: Appointed December 17, 2009
One representative of Community Rehabilitation Program service providers (CRPs)
David DeLeonardis, Sacramento: Appointed September 23, 2010 to replace Joseph Mitchell, Fontana, whose term expired September 7, 2010
Four representatives of business, industry and labor
Nanci Linke-Ellis, Santa Monica: Appointed September 23, 2010 to replace Adam Shandrow, Lakewood, whose term expired September 7, 2010
Urban Miyares, San Diego: Appointed September 27, 2010 to replace Jeff Eben, Clovis, who resigned July 9, 2010
Stephanie Murphy, La Mesa: Reappointed December 17, 2009 (Treasurer)
Milt Wright, Northridge: Appointed January 26, 2010
Two representatives of disability advocacy groups representing individuals with physical, cognitive, sensory and mental disabilities and representatives of individuals who have difficulty representing themselves due to their disabilities
Robert Hand, Coarsegold: Reappointed September 23, 2010 (Vice-Chair)
Giang Nguyen, Clovis: Appointed October 22, 2008
Current or former vocational rehabilitation services applicants or recipients
Brian Connors, Sacramento: Appointed October 22, 2008 (Chair)
One representative of the American Indian Vocational Rehabilitation Projects carried out under Section 121 of the Act
Vaughn Pena Sr., Ukiah: Appointed December 17, 2009
Jill Larson, Loomis: Appointed July 20, 2010
One representative of the State Workforce Investment Board
Ken Quesada, Sacramento: Appointed September 27, 2010, to replace Gayle Pacheco, Walnut, whose term expired September 7, 2010
Anthony "Tony" Sauer, Grass Valley
State Rehabilitation Council Structure
The State Rehabilitation Council is led by the Executive Planning Committee (EPC). The EPC consists of the SRC Officers and Committee Chairs. In June 2010, the SRC adopted a new Committee structure that aligned its Committee responsibilities with its mandates under the Act. All SRC members serve on one of two Committees – Planning and Policy Development (PPD) or Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E). The SRC’s federal mandates are divided between the two committees based on whether they are prospective (planning) or retrospective (evaluation). Since the majority of the SRC’s mandated functions are cyclical in nature and move from planning to evaluation and back again, this approach allows all SRC members an active involvement in fulfilling its mandated responsibilities.
The SRC/DOR Partnership