Meeting Minutes – March 21, 2012


Colorado SILC

March 21, 2012

Hyatt Place Garden of the Gods, Colorado Springs    9:00 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.

Approved: May 16, 2012


Members present: Debbie Petersen, Julia Beems, Anna French, Larry Williams, Martha Mason, Buna Dahal, Hope Krause, Joe Anzures

DVR staff: Joel Pavelis, Kelley Hartmann, Sue Fager, Rebecca Johnson

Guests: Dixie Herring, Val Jones, Patricia Yeager, Christopher Roe, John Wooster, Ian Engle, Beth Danielson, Billy Allen

Staff: Judy Neal


Call to Order and Introductions:

Debbie Petersen, Chair, opened the meeting and asked participants to introduce themselves. She announced that Autumn Gold had withdrawn her application due to new job duties, and had recommended her colleague Chris Roe as a potential member. Debbie also told the SILC that nominations for officers would not be made until new and renewing members were officially appointed by the governor. At that time, the SILC will vote by email.


Approval of Minutes:

Anna French made a motion to accept the minutes of the January SILC meeting. Julia Beems seconded the motion. The minutes were approved with two changes; a typo in Martha’s name on page 2 and additional information from Sen. Aguilar’s presentation.


DVR Report:

Sue Fager reported that an updated list of CILs that includes new directors and new addresses had been added to our folders. She announced that Patricia Zieglar is the new executive director at Atlantis, but DCIL still has an interim director.  The remaining Part B funds for FY 12 have arrived, and option letters will be sent to the centers. The new application for State Independent Living Services (SILS) is ready to send. The packets will be sent next week and due back to DVR by April 20. Contracts are expected to be approved by May 7 and due back, with signatures, by May 14th. The revised IL rules have been approved in pre-board and will go to the Human Services Board on April 16th.  Sue told the SILC that all of the centers’’ corrective action plans had been submitted.


SILC Coordinator Report:

Judy Neal said that most of the previous month was spent planning the March meeting, including the budget analysis.


ACCIL Report:

Larry Williams reported that there are many changes that are currently affecting the ACCIL. He believes that this is an opportunity for centers to evaluate their status and find new ways to provide quality services. He is hoping that the manual that John Wooster is writing will help CIL staff provide consistent services across the state. He suggested that a statewide training for staff, when the manual is complete, would be helpful.  Sue Fager commented that the CIL Suite workgroup was working on a similar project, and suggested that John and Dixie may want to coordinate their efforts.


SRC Report:

Debbie talked about the DVR needs assessment process. They have created eight separate surveys, each targeting a different audience, based on function. She suggested that the SPIL committee may want to use a similar approach.


Financial Report:

Judy Neal reported that, based on the February finance report, the SILC had spent $18,540, leaving a balance of $29, 510. The expenditures on this report reflect those that have posted to the state accounting system. Based on the SILC’s check register, we have committed to spend $21,159, as of the date of the meeting.


Hidden Talents

Judy conducted an exercise to discover the unknown skills and talents of our members. Each participant listed three things that the SILC would not likely know. The cards were gathered and members guessed who had submitted them. We discovered that our SILC members have many useful skills that may be called upon in the future.


Committee Reports:

Membership: Sue has written additional justifications for renewing members and has resubmitted the membership packet. The SILC will consider Chris Roe, from Division of Housing, as a potential member to replace Autumn Gold.

Public Policy: Anna reported that the committee has moved from brainstorming to focusing in on specific aspects of transition. A plan is being made to follow an individual through the transition process to determine whether barriers to community living are still an issue. Anna suggested that committees develop their own budgets for the upcoming fiscal year. She is expecting some costs associated with doing a “Meet and Greet” at the Capitol.

SPIL: Julia talked about the first meeting of the committee. The SPIL timeline and the role of the committee were the primary topics. The committee discussed having each center conduct a focus group, survey, or event to gather information for the new SPIL. The information gathering process will then focus on meeting with disability-specific organizations, and look for ways to locate unserved or underserved eligible consumers. Joe Anzures suggested that we gather surveys and assessments that have already been conducted by other groups.

Finance: Judy talked to the SILC about projected costs for the next three months. Based on estimates, the SILC will likely have a surplus of funds to spend. The estimated amount is $17,887. Suggestions for purchases were made by council members. These included:  statewide training for CIL staff; equipment accessories; extra bulb for projector; and website training. A subsequent suggestion was to hire a writer/graphic designer to reorganize the SILC’s issue briefs. All suggestions will be researched by the executive committee and purchases voted on by the SILC.


Center Spotlight:

Dixie Herring, Director of Independent Living at The Independence Center, told the SILC about the growth of TIC’s independent living program.  In addition to restructuring the program and hiring new staff with disabilities, TIC staff has undergone intensive training in goal writing, independent living plans and IL philosophy .Upcoming training includes assistive technology and motivational interviewing. TIC has taken the lead with the CIL Suite User’s Group and has found this to be a good forum for discussing IL services.  Dixie told us about the center’s first annual disability pride parade which attracted 90 people from the local disability community. Other plans for TIC include town hall meetings, a disability benefits position, hosting the ATP accessible house, coordinating a rep payee program outside of the center, and working with FEMA on emergency preparedness.


Old Business: There was no old business to discuss.


New Business: There was no new business brought forward.



Rebecca Johnson was recognized for her service to the SILC. Rebecca is moving from the Operations Support Unit at DVR to the Training Unit. She will no longer be assisting the SILC with setting up our meetings, developing financial reports, or preparing reimbursements. She has taken great care of the SILC, and she will be missed.


SILC Basics:

Judy made a presentation concerning the SILC’s role in the development of the State Plan for Independent Living (SPIL).  She highlighted components of Section 705 of Title VII that mandate the SILC’s responsibilities to jointly develop the SPIL with the DSU. The SPIL must include a description of the statewide network of centers, coordination with other state agencies, relationship between the SILC and DSU, funding for IL services, goals, objectives, and timelines. Additionally, RSA has instructed that “network of centers” must include criteria for opening a new center and a process for redistribution of funds in the event that a center closes.


Deaf Ambassador Program Update:

Billy Allen, former SILC member, reported on the progress of this program that allows qualified staff from several centers to provide an introduction to deaf and hard of hearing consumers for IL staff who are not proficient in ASL. After the initial meeting, the consumer will work directly with the IL staff in his or her CIL area. At this time, the state has been divided into three service areas that are covered by staff from CFD in Pueblo, DRS in Fort Collins, and TIC in Colorado Springs. It is expected that staff will spend approximately five hours per month working with deaf and hard of hearing consumers from other centers.


Public Comment: Dr. Patricia Yeager, CEO of  The Independence Center, acknowledged Dixie Herring for her excellent work in developing the IL program at TIC. Patricia wanted the SILC and guests to understand that the activities of the TIC IL program are primarily funded by the center’s home health services. Because all centers do not have those funds available, the SILC cannot expect to see significant changes or increase of services in other centers. It is her suggestion that the SILC use TIC as a model to educate the legislature about the level of IL service that could be provided if there are more state funds for IL.


SPIL Launch:

SILC members, joined by several ACCIL members reviewed the mission statement from the current SPIL to set the stage for launching the development of the next SPIL. All participants were asked to make a list of five things they wanted to see in the new SPIL. These items were recorded on a flipchart, and then ranked by the group.  A shorter list of things they didn’t want to see in the SPIL was developed and ranked. At the end of the activity there was a lively discussion about expectations, ideas for training and funding, and ways that we can work together to achieve our IL goals.


Adjourn:  The meeting was adjourned at 3:30 p.m.