NC Council on Developmental Disabilities
Executive Committee Minutes
Date: October 19, 2020
Time: 10:00 AM – 11:20 AM
Members Present: Allison Dodson, Kerri Eaker, Cheryl Powell, Ryan Rotundo, Nessie Siler, Dan Smith
Members Absent: Myron Gavin
Staff and Council Members Present: David Ingram, Melissa Swartz, JoAnn Toomey, Yadira Vasquez, Talley Wells, Travis Williams, Philip Woodward, Letha Young
I. Call to Order
Kerri Eaker called the meeting to order and thanked everyone for joining the meeting and for their service. Kerri asked the members to share what they would like to see happen in the coming year. Ryan would like to see continued action on our current initiatives and the Registry of Unmet Needs. Dan would like to see us maintain long-term success on our initiatives. Allison has really enjoyed the Five-Year State Plan process and hearing from all citizens in need and how we mobilize to respond to those direct needs. She really appreciates being part of this team and having a seat at the table. Cheryl is very interested in doing more public policy and being involved in the best way we can. Nessie wanted to join Cheryl in what she said because she has sat through several of the public policy meetings and is ready to go!
Kerry next asked staff to share. JoAnn is ready to see where the Council is going to go with the next Five-Year State Plan. Yadira would like to see where the initiatives are going to go and for everyone to be able to get back to coming into the office to work. Talley would like us to be able to spend the money that’s currently available and looks forward to an interesting year. David is looking forward to getting the Five-Year State Plan accomplished and for public policy to continue and to have a different approach. Philip wants to see our state give parents who are frustrated over supported living and feeling like NC is against them, to give them some sliver of hope and that our Five-Year State Plan will be able to help get us there. Travis looks forward to continuing the movement of the state more toward employment for people with disabilities. Melissa asked to just observe the meeting for now.
II. Approval of Minutes
The draft minutes for the September 21, 2020 Executive Committee meeting was discussed and considered for approval.
MOTION: Allison Dodson made a motion to approve the September 21,2020 minutes. Dan Smith seconded the motion. The motion was approved unanimously.
III. Executive Director Update
Talley Wells said he is always happy to have individual discussions and/or meetings about how to keep everyone involved in the Council and with funding decisions. We need some solid ideas on how to spend the money and cannot bid it all out in order to spend it well over the next year. Some ideas are to hire a part-time person/mentor for public policy and we are in the process of developing a job description and finalizing who we feel comfortable to hire.
Peer Support is going to go back to the Community Living Committee. A lot of questions have been answered by NACDD and Optum. Some of the questions are how to make this sustainable and keep people trained and able to get a job, among other things. There is a lot of interest from the self-advocacy community and it’s a fairly strong program.
NCEN is planning to have a proposal for the February meeting for additional investments. There have been discussions on their wins and their interest in public policy. There is some conference money available that NCEN might be interested in.
Transition Planning was also mentioned. There was a call with Alan Bergman who is a national expert on transitions and there will be another call with him soon to discuss some kind of investment with a local agency for transition planning for when you are in school and transition to employment is part of the plan.
Outreach to the Latinx disability community, with some of the funds from Puerto Rico, has been an idea to invest. We want to meet with some of those folks and delve into that idea more and decide who would be best to bring this forward.
Roommate matching has been another idea that has come forward. The states of Washington and Minnesota have had some technology to help people with I/DD have a roommate and if they have a Medicaid waiver how it would be enhanced by having a roommate. The Supported Living folks are very interested in this and Philip Woodward is doing a good job at finding more information about this.
Talley summarized that that is where we are with the additional funds we have and there is a September, 2021 deadline to have this money out the door. It’s a great time to do this work and to have the enthusiasm and energy with everyone.
Updates on where we are now – we are 19 days into our Registry of Unmet Needs initiative. Christina is doing a great job already and the department is getting involved. They have presented already with the group Danielle Matula is involved in - the Governor’s Council on Exceptional Children and got to talk to a lot of people on the call and how it relates to children and LME/MCOs. He feels very good about our first 19 days!
Public Policy next steps: We have had a lot of energy with these calls – from other EDs in other states and self-advocates and how we have many roles to play and how to take next steps in a way that is measured and thoughtful and do what we are supposed to do in educating on public policy. Talley will be meeting with Chris Egan and Kerri to discuss more about what we are doing on this and how these issues align with the department.
Talley is also involved in one of the biggest controversies in the nation. The issue is law enforcement in schools. He has been put on the Governor’s Taskforce on Racial Equity in Criminal Justice. The group he is in is mostly with law enforcement. He is involved with the data and the school justice partnerships and juvenile courts. There was a listening session on Friday and a lot of people were there to speak out during the public comment session to say that the group he is on are not doing enough and whether or not we should make a statement on if there should be law enforcement in elementary schools. It is becoming a real issue and important conversations are happening.
Kerri wants to keep Medicaid Transformation at the forefront and Talley agrees. With the extra funding we have, we may want to consider this and to also invest more dollars in ABLE.
IV. Financial Report and Expenses/Match Update
Yadira Vasquez reviewed the financial reports for NCCDD. There is currently $254,710 available now and $237,208 FFY 2022 which begins October 1, 2021. The increase in current available funds is due to unexpended funds in travel, Council meetings and rent and may need to be re-adjusted again due to COVID-19. She asked the members if there were any questions.
Dan Smith noted that the match appeared to be low for the Leadership Training initiative. Yadira explained that Disability Rights NC has been contacted and they plan to show the majority of their match toward the end of their contract year. Kerri appreciated Dan monitoring the expenses so closely and everyone acknowledged Yadira for her hard work in keeping the Council’s federal fiscal years and spending under control.
V. Council Meeting/Member Survey Review
The members reviewed the draft November Council Meeting Agenda and agreed it was good to go and be distributed.
VI. Conference Funding Requests
None at this time.
VII. Ad Hoc Committees/Updates
David reminded the members that the Five-Year State Plan Ad Hoc committee met on the 9th and will meet again this coming Friday to review tables and graphs. There will be an exercise at the November meeting where members can put their pretend money where they’d like to see investments by the Council and what goals and objectives to work on for putting into a draft plan for the February Council meeting. Survey results will be sent out to the committees. Cheryl and Allison asked that a summary/visual presentation be done – possibly color coded by committee. Talley suggested a top five be created.
VIII. Personal Services Contract Review/Approval
None at this time.
Kerri Eaker asked the current standing committee chairs if they would like to continue to serve another year. They all expressed their interest to continue serving in that capacity for 2021. A motion to accept the Executive Committee’s recommendation for the 2021 NCCDD standing committee chairs will be presented at the November Council meeting.
Talley said that he is continuing to reach out to Council members individually and looks forward to meeting with everyone.
MOTION: Ryan Rotundo made a motion to adjourn the meeting. Dan Smith seconded the motion. The motion was approved unanimously.