Minutes — November 2017 Committee of the Whole Meeting

2017 Council and Committee Meetings


Council Members Present

  • Mary Durheim, Council Chair
  • Hunter Adkins
  • Patty Anderson, DRTx
  • Kimberly Blackmon
  • Kristine Clark
  • Gladys Cortez
  • Kristen Cox
  • Stephen Gersuk
  • Sara Kendall, TWC — Vocational Rehabilitation
  • Rachel Jew, DSHS — Maternal and Child Health
  • Scott McAvoy
  • Meagan Orsag, A&M CDD
  • Michael Peace
  • Amy Sharp, UT CDS
  • David Taylor
  • Lora Taylor
  • Richard Tisch

Council Members Absent

  • Lisa Akers-Owen, HHSC — Older Americans Act
  • Mateo Delgado
  • Ruth Mason
  • Dana Perry
  • Brandon Pharris
  • Ron Roberts, TEA — IDEA
  • Jami Snyder, HHSC — Medicaid
  • John Thomas

Guests Present

  • Jan Brown
  • Ted Johnson
  • Bob Kafka
  • Stephanie Martinez
  • Chris Masey
  • Karen McKinnon
  • Alexandra Noble
  • Sami Rahman
  • Robert Schier III
  • Rona Statman
  • Tiffany Williams

Staff Members Present

  • Beth Stalvey, Executive Director
  • Joanna Cordry
  • Cynthia Ellison
  • Danny Fikac
  • Ashley Ford
  • Linda Logan
  • Jessica Ramos
  • Joshua Ryf
  • Koren Vogel

Call To Order

The Committee of the Whole of the Texas Council for Developmental Disabilities convened on Thursday, November 2, 2017, in the Chennault Room of the Hilton Austin Airport, 9515 Hotel Drive, Austin, TX 78719. Council Chair Mary Durheim called the meeting to order at 9:34 AM.

  1. Introductions
    Council members, staff and guests introduced themselves.

  2. Public Comments
    ADAPT of Texas Organizer Bob Kafka discussed the importance of voting for people with disabilities and efforts of the Texas Disability Project (TDP). The mission of TDP is to outreach, educate, and disseminate information to people with disabilities, family members, supporters, professionals, the general public, and policymakers on issues affecting the integration of people with disabilities of all ages into every aspect of community living. TDP designed Register, Educate, Vote and Use Your Power (REV UP) Campaign in 2015 to get more people with disabilities and their supporters registered and voting. REV UP also seeks to engage candidates and the media on disability issues. TDP and REV UP are non-partisan. The American Association of People with Disabilities (AAPD) is working to replicate Texas’ voting efforts and aims to spread REV UP across the country.

    In August 2018, TDP will host its second Texas Disability Issues Forum in Austin. The forum is an opportunity for voters with interests and concerns about issues affecting Texans with disabilities to learn about the positions and potential policies of candidates from the Republican and Democrat parties, running for the top three statewide offices (Governor, Lieutenant Governor, and Attorney General) and U.S. Senate.

  3. Updates on Disaster Relief Collaboration Related to Hurricane Harvey
    Executive Director Beth Stalvey discussed efforts to provide relief for individuals with disabilities following Hurricane Harvey. Following Council approval of $200,000 in funding for a Cross-Council Collaboration in this area, TCDD has entered into an agreement with the Arc of Texas to administer funds for this venture. The Maryland DD Council has also contributed $15,000 along with $9,500 from iTACC to document lessons learned from this effort. The Arc of Texas will work with local organizations in the areas impacted by Hurricane Harvey to identify individuals with disabilities and their families who have unmet needs following the storm.

  4. Discussions on First Responders who Interact with People with Developmental Disabilities
    Planning Director Joanna Cordry discussed the need for training for first responders in their interactions with people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD). She identified law enforcement, firefighters, emergency medical services personnel and other rescuers as well as 9-1-1 operators, victim services providers and legal services providers as individuals in need of training. These individuals may not know how to support a person with a disability, recognize disabilities — especially “invisible” disabilities, or understand and individual’s communication.

    Cordry reviewed previous initiatives in Texas such as “tip” cards or phone apps for first responders and some local trainings provided by Local IDD Authorities. Cordry also reported on a training provided by the National Center on Criminal Justice and Disability that creates Disability Response Teams and trainings provided by Niagra University.

    Council members discussed their own interactions with emergency situations and agreed that the Council should explore options for developing further training in Texas.

  5. Discussions on Meaningful Day: Community-Based, Person-Centered Activities for People Who are Not Employed and Not in School
    Planning Director Cordry and Public Policy and Communications Assistant Ashley Ford discussed the different services and options for individuals with IDD who are not employed and not in school to participate in meaningful activities throughout their day. Cordry reviewed the TCDD state plan objective that addresses this issue and Ford discussed language from the Developmental Disabilities Act that calls for recreational, leisure and social opportunities in the most integrated settings. They reviewed the policies and practices that are necessary to support this concept.

    Council members discussed the potential for projects that would support meaningful day activities. Members agreed that projects in the areas of lifelong learning activities, social activities, community participation, and volunteer activities should be further explored

  6. Fiscal Year 2017 to Fiscal Year 2021 State Plan Updates
    Planning Director Cordry reviewed minor proposed revisions to the FY 2017 to FY 2021 State Plan. These revisions allow for expansion of transportation projects, add workplan activities to the DD Network Partners project on the impact of Medicaid, and allow for other projects such as first responder training and meaningful day activities.

    MOTION: To accept revisions to the FY 2017 to FY 2021 State Plan as presented.
    MADE BY: Lora Taylor
    SECOND: Kris Clark
    The motion passed unanimously


Council Chair Durheim adjourned the Committee of the Whole at 12:39 pm.

Beth Stalvey, Secretary to the Council