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NIDRR Legislation and Policy Page


Information on this page is designed to help you understand the law, regulations, and planning documents that enables NIDRR to do what it does.

The Creation of NIDRR and Its Legislative Mandate

The National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research (NIDRR) is a federal government agency that came into existence in 1978 within the U.S. Department of Education, and continues to operate today under a federal law known as Title II of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973. This law became part of the United States Code (USC) and NIDRR's mandate and mission is described in Title 29, Chapter 16, Subchapter II, Section 762. To view the contents of this section of the US Code from the Office of the Law Revision Counsel, U.S. House of Representatives, click here.

The Basic Business of NIDRR According to Its Legislative Mandate

The core business of NIDRR is to award grants and contracts to "states and public or private agencies and organizations, including institutions of higher education, Indian tribes and tribal organizations." These entities are then supposed to use this money to plan and conduct research, demonstration projects, training and related activities designed to:

  • "Develop methods, procedures, and rehabilitation technology, that maximize the full inclusion and integration into society, employment, independent living, family support, and economic and social self-sufficiency of individuals with disabilities, especially individuals with the most significant disabilities; and

  • Improve the effectiveness of vocational rehabilitation and other rehabilitation services. Source: 29 USC Section 764.

The Rules that Help Translate the Intent of the Law Into Agency Operating Guidelines

The Code of Federal Regulations (known as CFR) are the rules that help translate the intent of a Law into broad agency operating guidelines. The National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research (NIDRR) has its own set of Code of Federal Regulations that describe how our research funding mechanisms should operate. A bullet list of these regulations is listed below by research funding mechanism:

ED General Administrative Regulations (EDGAR): The Rules Funded Grantees Must Follow

Requirements and Status of the 2013-2017 Long-Range Plan

The legislative requirements governing NIDRR's Long Range plan are described in 29 U.S.C. § 762(h)

As directed by the legislative requirements, NIDRR has published its Final Long-Range Plan for Fiscal Years 2013-2017 in the Federal Register

Note: View NIDRR's previous long range plan (NIDRR's Notice of Final Long-Range Plan for Fiscal Years 2005-2009 in the Federal Register.

Note: Check out the related legislation page on the program side of the ED OSERS NIDRR website

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Last Modified: 06/17/2013