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November 2015 Highlights

PROJECT WIDE NEWS


Announcements

ACL’s Office of Grants Management (OGM) Obligation and Liquidation Deadlines
OGM will extend the obligation and liquidation deadlines in PMS as follows:

  • FY 2014 SGAT awards (90AG)-The deadline to obligate FY 2014 SGAT awards is September 30, 2016, and the deadline to liquidate the remainder of FY 2014 funds is December 30, 2016.
  • FY 2015 SGAT awards (90AG)-The deadline to obligate FY 2015 SGAT awards is September 30, 2016, and the deadline to liquidate the remainder of FY 2015 funds is December 30, 2016.

Please respond to Robert.Groenendaal@acl.hhs.gov for information about FY 2014 drawdowns in the PMS.

RESNA Catalyst Project and ATIA Announcements

  • Reaching Out to AT Act Programs for Input for ATIA 2016 Webinar Series
    The Assistive Technology Industry Association (ATIA) is planning its webinar series for the upcoming year and would like to know of any requests or feedback from the AT Act Programs on topics, speakers, or products to consider. The RESNA Catalyst Project is an important partner and subscriber with ATIA Webinars so we want to invite your input as we plan for next year. Please send any and all feedback to Caroline Van Howe, COO, ATIA at: cvanhowe@atia.org.
  • Are You Interested in Presenting on an ATIA Webinar?
    If you have attended any of the ATIA Webinars, you know they are an excellent source of information on AT products, apps, best practices, and implementation ideas. If you are interested in sharing your expertise and experience by presenting an ATIA Webinar, please contact Caroline Van Howe at cvanhowe@atia.org. Webinar speakers receive compensation for presenting.
  • Want to Take Advantage of Free ATIA Webinars?
    ATIA and the RESNA Catalyst Project will continue to offer live and archived webinars to all AT Act Entities. With RESNA Catalyst Project support, ALL AT Act Entities receive complimentary UNLIMITED access to ATIA webinars! Use access code CATUNL16. To learn more and sign up for all ATIA live and archived webinars, visit: http://atia.org/i4a/pages/index.cfm?pageid=4350.

Upcoming Events

Catalyst Webinars Scheduled for all AT Act Programs-Save the Dates
The RESNA Catalyst Project has been working to develop several webinars for FY 2016. First, the RESNA Catalyst Project, Neighborhood Legal Services, and the National Disabilities Rights Network will be conducting a webinar series beginning in November. Each of the webinars in this series will begin at 2p.m. EST, run for 90 minutes in length, will provide CART service, and offer CEUs. The following are save the dates and webinar titles:

  • December 9, 2015: Funding AT for Blind to Support Work and Independence, register at: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/7503551502939632129
  • January 27, 2016: AT and Voting Access

  • March 16, 2016: Meeting the AT Needs of Older Americans in their Homes and in Facilities

Second, Tony Gentry, Associate Professor, Director, Assistive Technology for Cognition Laboratory, with Virginia Commonwealth University will be providing an update on Cognitive Aids for People with Brain Injury on February 17, 2016. This webinar will begin at 3p.m. EST, run for 90 minutes in length, will provide CART service, and offer CEUs. Look for information on how to register for all webinars soon. In the meantime, save the dates today!

RESNA Catalyst Project Technical Assistance Plan for FY 2016
Last month, RESNA Catalyst Project Staff met with AFP and SGAT Steering Committees to go over Catalyst’s Technical Assistance Plan for FY2016. Each Committee provided feedback, which was incorporated into the final Plan. Catalyst would like to thank the following AT Act Program Personnel for their time and support: Roger Levy (TX), Lisa Rosano (NY), Laura Plummer (WI), Alan Knue (WA), Tammy Koger (NC), Marilyn Hammond (UT), Teresa Favuzzi (CA), Dave Matheis (KY), Tracy Beck (PA), Holly Windorski (NE), Kim Cantrell (CA), Sandy Prince (VA), Jack Brummel (WA), and Rob Groenendaal (ACL). If you would like a copy of the Plan, contact Paul Galonsky, pgalonsky@resna.org.

STATEWIDE AT PROGRAMS


Announcements

Christopher Reeve High Impact Quality of Life Grants
The Application period for the High Impact Quality of Life grants ended on November 30, 2015. The Application review period is between December 1, 2015 and January 6, 2016, and decisions will be announced on January 13, 2016.

Governor Proclaims November as Assistive Technology Awareness Month in Pennsylvania
Governor Tom Wolf of Pennsylvania proclaimed that November is Assistive Technology month throughout the state. To celebrate Assistive Technology Awareness Month in Pennsylvania, Pennsylvania's Initiative on Assistive Technology (PIAT) hosted an AT Expo on November 20, 2015. People who attended were able to discover the latest assistive technology for communication, learning, telecommunication, independent living, and employment accommodation. To read the Governor’s Proclamation, visit: http://disabilities.temple.edu/news/topstories/201511/ATmonth201511.shtml#text1. Congratulations to the state of Pennsylvania and to PIAT!

SGAT Act Program Contact Sheet Update
As in all years, the RESNA Catalyst Project will begin to update SGAT Program contact sheets, which will include all contact information for SGATs. In the next couple of weeks, look for an email from Paul Galonsky asking each SGAT Director to update their Program’s contacts. In January, 2016, these sheets will be available to all AT Act Programs, the public, Federal offices, as well as on the RESNA Catalyst Project’s consumer webpage, www.findatnow.org.

Recent Events

CATADA Teleconference/Webinar: State AT Program Data Entry
Monday, November 9, 2016
This CATADA teleconference/webinar provided information about a new data system that SGATs can access while ACL completes their version of the MIS application. For additional information, contact Diane Golden, diane.golden@ataporg.org.

Webinar: Revisions to the Quality Indicators Manual for Device Loan
Tuesday, November 10, 2015

This webinar shared the Quality Indicators Manual for Device Loan revisions with all SGATs and allowed for additional comments and revisions from all programs. The webinar was recorded and archived on the RESNA Catalyst Project’s Website at: http://www.resnaprojects.org/statewide/webedarchive.html. Look for the revised Manual at www.resnaprojects.org/statewide/quality/ATQIManual.doc.

PAAT PROGRAMS


Announcements

New Publication: Funding Assistive Technology through State Medicaid Programs
Co-authors, Maureen O’Connell, Esq., Southern Disability Law Center & James R. Sheldon, Esq., National AT Advocacy Project developed his AT funding manual. The publication includes extensive citations to law, regulation, policy, and case law in 138 footnotes. In addition, the publication includes a discussion of nearly all legal issues likely to be encountered in Medicaid AT advocacy, with a four-page summary of AT-related state and federal court decisions from the past 25 plus years. This publication will be posted on the National AT Advocacy Project’s Website by December 1, 2015. To download, visit: http://www.nls.org/Disability/NationalAssistiveTechnologyProject. Links will be at the top of the webpage and under “What’s New”.

Training Delivered in Anchorage, Alaska, November 17-18, 2015
Jim Sheldon of the National AT Advocacy Project and Ron Hager of the National Disability Rights Network, delivered this interactive, two-day training. The training was co-presented to Disability Rights Alaska Staff and invited guests, Assistive Technology Alaska (ATLA, the Statewide AT Program) and Alaska’s Work Incentives Planning and Assistance (WIPA) Project. After a discussion of the AT device and AT services definitions and what qualifies as a PAAT activity, presentations were given on AT funding through special education programs, state vocational rehabilitation agencies, Medicaid and Medicaid waivers, and the Social Security/SSI work incentives (including the SSI PASS plan). In addition, a discussion ensued of alternative funding sources, with Disability Rights Alaska, ATLA, and the WIPA Project sharing information on Alaska-specific funding sources and practical issues unique to their state.

ALTERNATIVE FINANCING AND TELEWORK LOAN PROGRAMS


Announcements

Data Submission for AFPs and Telework Update
Please continue to be patient with your data submission for FY2015, as ACL has not yet finalized a system for data submission. As we have more information we will immediately share with all programs. Thank you.

Technical Assistance Plan for 2015-2016!
Keep your eyes on your inboxes for a copy of the RESNA Catalyst Project’s TA plan for the coming year.

Revisions to AFP Contact Sheets
By now, all AFP Program Directors should have received a request for updates to program contact information. If you have not yet responded with updated information to jasonluciano@resna.org, please do so soon so we can continue to provide accurate AFP contact information. Thank you!

Recent Events

New Loan Director Series – November 18, 2015
The RESNA Catalyst Project started the New Loan Directors series in November. This series began with a discussion on outlines and structures for moving forward, and will resume in January, 2016. If you have an interest in participating please contact jluciano@resna.org.

New Grantee Call – November 19, 2015
The next monthly call bringing together the new AFP grantees was held in November. These calls are for those programs receiving funding under the recent competitions to discuss unique opportunities and challenges presented to new AFP grantees.

Upcoming Events

Loan Directors Open Forum Call – December 8, 2015, 3-4:00p.m. Eastern
RESNA Catalyst Project Director, Joey Wallace will host an all Loan Program Directors Forum in December. This call will focus on issues of concern and interest for all loan programs, and everyone benefits from the active participation programs bring to the discussion. Please join us by calling in at 1-800-211-4163, with pass code 57 48 484#

New Grantee Call – December 17, 2015, 4-5:00p.m. Eastern
The next monthly call bringing together the new AFP grantees will be held December 17, 2015, 4:00 p.m. Eastern. These calls are for those programs receiving funding under the recent competitions to discuss unique opportunities and challenges presented to new AFP grantees.

New Loan Director Series – January 13th, 2016, 3-4:00p.m. Eastern
The RESNA Catalyst Project will continue the New Loan Directors series on January 13, 2016, 3:00p.m. Eastern. This series will involve discussions and presentations on topics of interest as identified by invited participants. If you have an interest in participating please contact jluciano@resna.org.

OTHER RESOURCES

Mid Atlantic ADA Webinar: Effective Practices for Employment Preparation and Support for Youth with Disabilities
Thursday, December 3, 2015, 2:00-3:30 p.m. Eastern
For many, employment is both an intervention and an outcome. Research has shown that one of the key indicators of whether youth with disabilities have succeeded in the transition from school to adult life is whether or not they are employed after they leave high school. This presentation will address why we should presume all youth can be employed through stories and discussion of the latest professional research. To register for this free webinar, visit: http://www.adainfo.org/training/webinar-effective-practices-employment-preparation-and-support-youth-disabilities.

POWER Mobility Video for Kids
Help raise the profile of research for kids using power wheelchairs by viewing this new video on YouTube and sharing it with others. The video and research focuses on how power wheelchairs make a difference in the lives of kids who use them: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BPyNOCp2N_U&list=PLxWz0fEGuv6oBzjm34lYd2ykUH8IoXkCX&index=13.

AT Radio & Podcasts in Indiana
INDATA has launched an internet radio station. AssistiveTechnologyRadio.com broadcasts 24/7 and includes a wide variety of AT programs. Programs include INDATA’s two podcasts as well as various AT training sessions. To view and listen to the growing list of episodes, visit: http://www.eastersealstech.com/on-air/. INDATA will include audio content from other AT projects. To submit radio content or to learn more about INDATA's AT radio and podcasts contact Wade Wingler at wwingler@eastersealscrossroads.org.

Follow the RESNA Catalyst Project on Twitter today!@ResnaCatalyst
The RESNA Catalyst Project now has a Twitter feed on the homepage at www.resnaprojects.org.  Twitter is an online social networking and microblogging service that enables users to send and read "tweets", which are text messages limited to 140 characters.

Follow what is happening with the RESNA Catalyst’s Online Calendar
The RESNA Catalyst Project’s event calendar is on the homepage atwww.resnaprojects.org.  This interactive calendar allows individuals to access information on upcoming events as well as visit recent ones. Most events reported in these Highlights Newsletters will now be a simple click away to download, register, and share!

Product Disclaimer

AT product information contained above is distributed by the RESNA Catalyst Project for informational purposes only.  Endorsement or recommendation is neither intended nor implied, and the RESNA Catalyst Project, RESNA, RESNA employees, collaborators, and partners take no responsibility for individual decisions, and shall bear no liability for any loss or damages resulting from the use of this information.

The RESNA Catalyst Project provides technical assistance to Statewide Assistive Technology Programs, Alternative Financing Programs & Access to Telework Programs, and Protection and Advocacy for Assistive Technology Programs. RESNA, the Rehabilitation Engineering & Assistive Technology Society of North America, is the premier professional organization dedicated to promoting the health and well-being of people with disabilities through increasing access to technology solutions.

This newsletter is produced by the RESNA Catalyst Project under a grant funded by the Administration for Community Living (ACL), U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (ACL/HHS) through the Assistive Technology Act of 1998, as amended.  The information contained herein does not necessarily reflect the position or policy of RSA/ED or RESNA and no official endorsement of the materials should be inferred.

Contact Information:  RESNA Catalyst Project, 1700 North Moore Street, Suite 1540, Arlington, VA  22209-1903; (703) 524-6686 (voice), (866) 342-6572 (voice), (703) 524-6630 (FAX), (703) 524-6639 (TTY).  Email:  catalyst@resna.org; Website:  http://www.resnaprojects.org.