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8 CSR 70 - 1.020 Assistive Technology Loan Program
PURPOSE: This rule establishes the standards and procedures for the provision of a statewide low-interest loan program providing financing to eligible persons for purchasing assistive technology devices and services. This rule implements section 191.862 through 191.865.
- Program Title. The assistive technology loan program established in 191.862 through 191.865 shall hereinafter be referred to as "Show-Me Loans".
- Definitions. As used in this rule, except as otherwise required for the context, the following terms have the meanings ascribed:
- Assistive technology device- is equipment or an item to help maintain, increase, or improve the independence, or functional capabilities of an individual with a disability. The program will facilitate loans to purchase a broad range of assistive technology.
- Assistive technology service- is a service that directly assists an individual with a disability in the selection, acquisition, or use of an assistive technology device. Such term includes, but is not limited to:
- The evaluation of the needs of an individual with a disability;
- Selecting, designing, fitting, customizing, adapting, applying, maintaining, repairing, or replacing of an assistive technology device;
- Coordinating with other therapies, interventions, or services with assistive technology devices;
- Training or technical assistance for an individual with a disability, or, where appropriate, the family of an individual with a disability;
- Training or technical assistance to professionals, employers, or other individuals who provide services to, employ, or are otherwise substantially involved in the major life functions of an individual with a disability.
- Individual with a disability- is an individual who meets the definition of an individual with a disability as defined in the Americans with Disabilities Act or an individual who is eligible for any of the State of Missouri disability related programs.
- Council- is the Missouri Assistive Technology Advisory Council.
- Program- is the Show-Me Loans Program.
- Eligible Applicant- is an individual seeking a loan to assist one or more individuals with disabilities obtain an assistive technology device or service;
- Adjusted Gross Income- is the amount claimed as adjusted gross income on an applicant's most recent federal income tax return.
- Program administrator- is staff of Missouri Assistive Technology or other entity so designated by the Missouri Assistive Technology Advisory Council.
- Applicant Eligibility.
- Eligible Applicants shall:
- Be residents of Missouri;
- Be seeking a loan that will assist an individual with a disability obtain an assistive technology device or service;
- Meet program standards established by the Council.
- The program administrator may determine an applicant is ineligible for the program when the applicant has defaulted on a previous loan made through the program or violates any provisions of the program, or ceases to meet the requirements of these rules or of any standards or policies established by the Council.
- Eligible applicants shall have an annual adjusted gross income that does not exceed $60,000 for an individual or an individual plus a second exemption, spouse or dependent. For each additional dependent claimed, $5,000 shall be added to the $60,000 base level.
- Assistive Technology Eligible for Loan Funds.
Allowable devices shall include, but not be limited to:
- Wheelchairs, motorized scooters and other mobility aids;
- Braille equipment;
- Hearing aids and other assistive listening systems;
- Augmentative communication systems;
- Environmental control units;
- Computers and adaptive computer peripherals;
- Building modifications for accessibility;
- Motor vehicle modifications for accessibility.
Motor vehicles such as automobiles, vans, or trucks are not eligible items for loans. Building modifications for homes are limited to the cost of the modifications. Loans are not permitted toward the purchase of a home.
- Loan Standards.
- Interest Rates. As a Special Purpose Credit Program under Section 8 of Regulation B of the Equal Credit Opportunity Act, the loan program may base interest rates on economic need rather than credit risk factors. The Council shall establish an interest rate formula for borrowers based on individual payment abilities. The interest rate for individuals with a gross annual income of $30,000 or more shall not exceed the prime interest rate. The interest rate for individuals with a gross annual income of more than $15,000 but less than $30,000 shall not exceed one percentage point below the prime interest rate. The interest rate for individuals with a gross annual income of $15,000 or less shall not exceed two percentage points below the prime interest rate. The interest rates for loans shall be lower than comparable commercial lending rates. Loans may be made with no interest.
- Repayment Periods. The Council shall establish repayment periods for borrowers based on the ability to pay. Loan repayment periods shall not exceed ten years.
- Loan amount. The maximum loan amount per applicant for fiscal year 2002 shall be $10,000. Thereafter, the Council shall have the authority to review and adjust the maximum loan amount.
- Other. The Council shall establish standards at the beginning of each year for matters necessary to implement the program. These standards shall include, but not be limited to, requirements for security or collateral for loans, and limits on the numbers and amounts of loans to assure the continued solvency of the loan program fund.
- Application Procedures. Individuals shall apply for the program, on forms approved by the program administrator, that include:
- Applicant name, home and mailing address, home and work phone, and Social Security number.
- If the applicant does not have a disability, a description of the applicant's relationship to the individual with a disability, the name of the person with a disability, if different from applicant; and the type of disability.
- Whether the applicant is applying as an individual or with a co-applicant;
- Identification of the assistive technology that the applicant plans to purchase; a description of how the assistive technology will improve the life of the person with a disability; the cost of the assistive technology; amount of loan requested; and the name, address and phone number of the vendor, contractor, or individual from whom the assistive technology will be purchased.
- Certification by the applicant that they authorize the program administrator to check the applicant's credit, make all inquiries necessary to verify the accuracy of the information provided, and share all financial, credit, and other pertinent information with required entities for the sole purposes of loan approval and loan maintenance.
- Whether the applicant rents or owns housing; name of landlord or mortgagor; monthly rent or mortgage payment; years and months living at current address and at previous address; name, address, and phone number of current employer; amount of gross monthly income from employment; source and monthly amount of income other than employment; name, address, and phone number of previous employer; years and months at current employer and previous employer; position or occupation at current employer and at previous employer; whether the applicant has a checking or a savings account; the bank name that holds the checking or savings account; and the names, addresses, phone numbers, and relationship to the applicant of the two closest living relatives not living at applicant's address. If there is a co-applicant, all information in (6) is also required for the co-applicant including a spouse if the spouse is contractually liable for repayment or if the applicant is relying on the income of spouse for approval of credit.
- Information about the applicant's current financial obligations including, but not limited to: financial institutions, department stores, credit cards, leases, unpaid taxes, alimony and child support. The applicant shall include information including the responsibility of the applicant and any co-applicant, the name of creditors, current outstanding balances, monthly or other term payments.
- Information required by federal or state statute.
- A statement to be signed by the applicant verifying the truthfulness and accuracy of all information submitted.
- In addition to information required on the application, applicants shall supply any additional information and supporting documentation which the program administrator deems reasonably necessary to determine the applicant's eligibility to receive a loan through the program.
- Application Review Procedures.
- Initial Application Review- Upon receipt of an application, the program administrator will perform an initial review to verify that the applicant is seeking a loan for assistive technology for an individual with a disability. The program administrator will perform an initial review of the applicant's creditworthiness, ability to repay the loan, and ability to meet the eligibility criteria established by the Council.
- Loan Application Review- Following initial application review, the application will be submitted by the program administrator for approval or denial by the loan application review committee.
- The loan application review committee shall consist of no fewer than five members and no more than eleven members. At least one member shall be a Missouri Assistive Technology Advisory Council member. A majority of members shall be individuals with disabilities or individuals who have a family member with disability. The Council shall appoint loan application review committee members for three year terms.
- The loan application review committee shall approve or deny loan applications based on the eligibility criteria and financial standards established by the Council.
- Approved Loan Processing-
- The program administrator shall prepare a resolution on behalf of the Council that will serve as an invoice for payment purposes upon approval of a loan application.
- The program administrator shall submit by FAX the resolution and all other necessary paperwork to immediately transfer funds from the Assistive Technology Revolving Loan Fund to the entity initiating the loan.
- Denied Loan Processing- The program administrator shall notify the applicant in writing following the denial of a loan application. The notification shall include information about how to appeal the denial decision.
- Appeals Process. Applicants may appeal any disapproval of a loan application by filing a written appeal with the Missouri Assistive Technology Advisory Council. No specific form shall be required. The council may hear appeals during any regularly scheduled council meeting or may call a special meeting of the council for such purpose. The council's decision regarding approval or denial of a loan shall be final.
- Fraud. If an applicant supplies false information or obtains a loan through misrepresentation of facts on the application, the program administrator may demand return of the item(s) for which the loan was provided and may declare such applicants ineligible for future loans.