[Federal Register: March 22, 2010 (Volume 75, Number =
54)]
[Notices]              
[Page 13521-13523]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]
[DOCID:fr22mr10-35]                            

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DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION


Centers for Independent Living Program--Training and Technical
Assistance

AGENCY: Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services,
Department of Education.

ACTION: Notice of proposed priority.

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    Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) Number: 84.400B.

SUMMARY: The Assistant Secretary for Special Education and
Rehabilitative Services proposes a priority under the Centers for
Independent Living Program--Training and Technical Assistance (CIL-TA
program). The Assistant Secretary may use this priority for
competitions in fiscal year (FY) 2010, using American Recovery and
Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA) funds appropriated for the Centers for
Independent Living program (CIL program) authorized under title VII,
chapter 1, part C of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended (the
Act), and competitions in later years. We take this action to improve
outcomes for individuals with significant disabilities by enhancing the
quality of independent living (IL) services provided to those
individuals and the efficiency of the delivery of those services by
CILs funded through the CIL program.

DATES: We must receive your comments on or before April 21, 2010.

ADDRESSES: Address all comments about this notice to Sue Rankin-White,
U.S. Department of Education, 400 Maryland Avenue, SW., Potomac Center
Plaza (PCP), Room 5013, Washington, DC 20202-2800.
    If you prefer to send your comments by e-mail, use the following
address: sue.rankin-white@ed.gov. You must include the term ``CIL-TA
program'' in the subject line of your electronic message.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Sue Rankin-White. Telephone: (202)
245-7312 or e-mail: sue.rankin-white@ed.gov.
    If you use a telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD), call,
toll free, (866) 889-6737.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:
    Invitation To Comment: We invite you to submit comments regarding
this notice.
    We invite you to assist us in complying with the specific
requirements of Executive Order 12866 and its overall requirement of
reducing regulatory burden that might result from this proposed
priority. Please let us know of any further ways we could reduce
potential costs or increase potential benefits while preserving the
effective and efficient administration of the program.
    During and after the comment period, you may inspect all public
comments about this notice in room 5013, PCP, 550 12th Street, SW.,
Washington, DC, between the hours of 8:30 a.m. and 4:00 p.m.,
Washington, DC time, Monday through Friday of each week except Federal
holidays.
    Assistance to Individuals with Disabilities in Reviewing the
Rulemaking Record: On request, we will provide an appropriate
accommodation or auxiliary aid to an individual with a disability who
needs assistance to review the comments or other documents in the
public rulemaking record for this notice. If you want to schedule an
appointment for this type of accommodation or auxiliary aid, please
contact the person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT.
    Purpose of Program: The purpose of the CIL program is to maximize
independence, productivity, empowerment, and leadership of individuals
with disabilities and integrate these individuals into the mainstream
of society.
    CILs are consumer-controlled, community-based, cross-disability,
nonresidential, private nonprofit agencies that are designed and
operated within a local community by individuals with disabilities and
provide an array of IL services to individuals with significant
disabilities, including the core services of information and referral,
IL skills training, peer counseling, and individual and systems
advocacy.
    Each State has established a Statewide Independent Living Council
(SILC) that jointly develops and signs the State Plan for Independent
Living with the designated State unit, monitors, reviews, and evaluates
the implementation of the State plan, and coordinates activities with
the State Rehabilitation Council and other organizations related to
issues that affect individuals with disabilities. A majority of a
SILC's members are individuals with disabilities. Other members include
CIL representatives and State agency representatives, as well as other
appropriate individuals.
    Through the ARRA, Congress has appropriated $87,500,000 for the CIL

[[Page 13522]]

program to be obligated by FY 2010. Under section 721(b)(1) of the Act,
the Department is required to reserve between 1.8 and 2 percent of the
funds appropriated for the CIL program to provide training and
technical assistance to CILs, agencies eligible to become CILs, and
SILCs with respect to planning, developing, conducting, administering,
and evaluating CILs.

    Program Authority: 29 U.S.C. 796f(b).
    Applicable Program Regulations: 34 CFR part 366.

Proposed Priority

    This notice contains one proposed priority.

Centers for Independent Living (CILs) Community-Based Training and
Technical Assistance Project

    Background: Under the CIL-TA program, the Department currently
funds three training and technical assistance grants: one is in its
final year and supports training and technical assistance to CILs and
SILCs on the issue of service delivery to young people with
disabilities as they transition from school to living independently,
and two provide general, comprehensive training and technical
assistance to CILs and SILCs, respectively.
    The training and technical assistance needs of CILs are ongoing and
evolve as new centers are funded, and existing centers add and reassign
personnel, expand, and change. The Department identifies the training
and technical assistance needs of CILs and SILCs through its review of
responses to a survey in their annual performance reports and through
its monitoring and technical assistance efforts.
    Based on this annual survey and on our ongoing monitoring and
technical assistance activities, we have determined that a significant
proportion of CILs would benefit from training and technical assistance
to improve their efforts: to develop strategies to address the needs of
underserved populations and underserved geographic areas within the
center's service area; to promote community-based alternatives to
institutionalization; to assist youths with disabilities in their
transition from school to postsecondary education, employment, and IL;
and to better serve individuals with disabilities residing in rural
areas.
    For this reason, we intend to use this priority to award a grant to
provide targeted training and technical assistance to CILs on one or
more of the following topics:
     Developing Strategies to Address the Needs of Underserved
Populations and Underserved Geographic Areas. Although CILs provide IL
services to individuals with significant disabilities within a defined
geographical area, CILs have acknowledged that often there are barriers
to serving certain populations and certain areas within the center's
service area. For example, cultural mores of particular ethnic
populations may not be supportive of interventions by ``outsiders'' to
provide independent living to individuals with significant
disabilities, and, in isolated, rural areas, it may be physically
difficult to access the consumers who live in that area in order to
provide services. Providing technical assistance to CILs so that they
can implement better strategies to overcome barriers and reach out to
serve underserved populations and geographic areas will result in
centers that are truly community-based and that adequately serve the
entire community they were intended to serve.
     Promoting Community-based Alternatives to
Institutionalization. CILs play a critical role in assisting
individuals with significant disabilities to move from institutional
settings to community-based living, or to prevent institutionalization
in the first place, by helping these individuals obtain the accessible
housing, transportation, assistive technology, and IL skills they need
to leave nursing homes and other institutional settings. Providing
technical assistance and training in this area and sharing effective
practices among CILs will enhance their current efforts to promote
community-based alternatives to institutionalization.
     Assisting Transition-age Youths to Live Independently.
CILs are working with an increasing number of transition-age youths
with significant disabilities exiting secondary schools and entering
postsecondary institutions or the labor market. Training and technical
assistance in this area will help CILs work collaboratively with the
elementary and secondary education system, colleges and universities,
employers, and vocational rehabilitation agencies to ensure that
transition-age youths with significant disabilities and their families
have the information, resources, and services they need to ensure their
success as adults.
     Providing IL Services in Rural Settings. Individuals with
significant disabilities who need IL services and live in rural
settings pose difficult challenges to CILs. For example, it is not
unusual in rural States for the CIL's cost of travelling to meet with
the consumer to exceed the cost of the services that are eventually
provided to that individual. Training and technical assistance in this
area will help CILs to utilize efficient outreach practices, including
the use of information technology whenever possible, to provide IL
services effectively in rural settings.
    Proposed Priority: This proposed priority supports a Training and
Technical Assistance Project to assist CILs in one or more of the
following important and challenging areas: developing strategies to
address the needs of underserved populations and underserved geographic
areas; promoting community-based alternatives to institutionalization;
assisting transition-age youths to succeed after secondary school; and
providing IL services in rural settings.
    To meet this priority, applicants must demonstrate all of the
following in their applications:
    (a) Evidence that the project team includes staff members with
expertise in each of the priority topic areas on which the applicant is
proposing to provide training and technical assistance;
    (b) A sound plan for providing training and technical assistance
and materials that (1) is based on rigorous research, where available;
(2) utilizes a broad range of available, accessible technologies and
methodologies; and (3) is sufficient to provide training and technical
assistance to as many CILs as possible.
    (c) An assurance that the applicant will coordinate and collaborate
with other training projects funded by the Department to ensure that
its training activities are complementary and non-duplicative and that
its dissemination activities are effective and efficient. At a minimum,
the Training and Technical Assistance Project must coordinate with
RSA's CILs Training and Technical Assistance Center.
    Types of Priorities: When inviting applications for a competition
using one or more priorities, we designate the type of each priority as
absolute, competitive preference, or invitational through a notice in
the Federal Register. The effect of each type of priority follows:
    Absolute priority: Under an absolute priority, we consider only
applications that meet the priority (34 CFR 75.105(c)(3)).
    Competitive preference priority: Under a competitive preference
priority, we give competitive preference to an application by (1)
awarding additional points, depending on the extent to which the
application meets the priority (34 CFR 75.105(c)(2)(i)); or (2)
selecting an application that meets the priority over an application of
comparable merit that does not meet the priority (34 CFR
75.105(c)(2)(ii)).

[[Page 13523]]

    Invitational priority: Under an invitational priority, we are
particularly interested in applications that meet the priority.
However, we do not give an application that meets the priority a
preference over other applications (34 CFR 75.105(c)(1)).
    Final Priority: We will announce the final priority in a notice in
the Federal Register. We will determine the final priority after
considering responses to this notice and other information available to
the Department. This notice does not preclude us from proposing
additional priorities, requirements, definitions, or selection
criteria, subject to meeting applicable rulemaking requirements.

    Note: This notice does not solicit applications. In any year in
which we choose to use this priority, we invite applications through
a notice in the Federal Register.

    Executive Order 12866: Under Executive Order 12866, we have
assessed the potential costs and benefits of this regulatory action and
have determined that it is not ``significant'' under the terms of that
Executive order.
    We have determined, also, that this proposed regulatory action does
not unduly interfere with State, local, and Tribal governments in the
exercise of their governmental functions.
    Intergovernmental Review: This program is subject to Executive
Order 12372 and the regulations in 34 CFR part 79. One of the
objectives of the Executive order is to foster an intergovernmental
partnership and a strengthened federalism. The Executive order relies
on processes developed by State and local governments for coordination
and review of proposed Federal financial assistance.
    This document provides early notification of our specific plans and
actions for this program.
    Accessible Format: Individuals with disabilities can obtain this
document in an accessible format (e.g., braille, large print,
audiotape, or computer diskette) on request to the program contact
person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT.
    Electronic Access to This Document: You can view this document, as
well as all other documents of this Department published in the Federal
Register, in text or Adobe Portable Document Format (PDF) on the
Internet at the following site: http://www.ed.gov/news/fedregister. To
use PDF you must have Adobe Acrobat Reader, which is available free at
this site.

    Note: The official version of this document is the document
published in the Federal Register. Free Internet access to the
official edition of the Federal Register and the Code of Federal
Regulations is available on GPO Access at: 
http://www.gpoaccess.gov/nara/index.html.


    Dated: March 17, 2010.
Alexa Posny,
Assistant Secretary for Special Education and Rehabilitative Services.
[FR Doc. 2010-6229 Filed 3-19-10; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4000-01-P