Minutes — February 2019 Committee of the Whole Meeting

2019 Council and Committee Meetings


Council Members Present

  • Mary Durheim, Council Chair
  • Kimberly Blackmon
  • Kristine Clark
  • Gladys Cortez
  • Kristen Cox
  • Andrew Crim
  • Mary Faithfull, DRTX
  • Ivy Goldstein, DSHS
  • Jennifer Hines, TWC
  • Scott McAvoy
  • Michael Peace
  • Amy Sharp, TCDS
  • Lora Taylor
  • John Thomas
  • Richard Tisch
  • Dana Williamson, HHSC/Medicaid
  • Wes Yeager, HHSC/Older Americans Act

Council Members Absent

  • Hunter Adkins
  • Mateo Delgado
  • Ruth Mason
  • Meagan Orsag, A&M CDD
  • Dana Perry
  • Brandon Pharris
  • Justin Porter, TEA
  • Guests Present
  • Ricardo Atkinson
  • Belinda Carlton
  • Stephanie Martinez
  • Lauren Rangel
  • Coline Sperling
  • Christa Walikonis
  • Audrey Young
  • Staff Present
  • Beth Stalvey, Executive Director
  • Martha Cantu
  • Joanna Cordry
  • Scott Daigle
  • Cynthia Ellison
  • Danny Fikac
  • Ashley Ford
  • Robert Garcia
  • Linda Logan
  • Joshua Ryf
  • Koren Vogel


Call to Order

The Committee of the Whole of the Texas Council for Developmental Disabilities convened on Thursday, February 7, 2019, in the Ballroom D-E of the Embassy Suites Austin Central, 5901 North IH-35, Austin, TX 78823. Council Chair Mary Durheim called the meeting to order at 9:10 AM.

  1. Introductions
    Council members, staff and guests introduced themselves.
  1. Public Comments
    No public comments were offered.
  1. State Plan Update
    TCDD Systems Change Specialist Danny Fikac provided an update on the consolidation of objectives in the FY 2016 – FY 2021 TCDD State Plan. He explained that the nine objectives contain all the previously documented activities but align with federal reporting requirements. He provided an example the expected of the outputs and outcomes from an activity and showed how data is collected and then reported as performance measures.
  1. State Agency Representatives Quarterly Activities Update
    Texas Center for Disability Studies (TCDS) representative Amy Sharp reported that they are seeking a director for the Texas Technology Access program. She also discussed activities conducted through the Texas Sibling Network project funded by TCDD and community outreach activities sponsored in conjunction with Baylor College of Medicine.
  3. Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) Title XIX/Medicaid representative Dana Williamson discussed the agency’s Legislative Appropriations Request (LAR) which included increased funding for Medicaid Waiver Services. She provided documentation for members with the funding requested so that numbers could be referenced if desired during the members’ visits with legislators.
  5. HHSC Older Americans Act alternate representative Wes Yeager introduced himself as it was his first meeting. He discussed his role at his agency.
  7. Audrey Young, serving as the interim director of the Children with Special Health Care Needs attended the meeting with Department of State Health Services Title V/Maternal and Child Health representative Ivy Goldstein. Young explained Title V funding as a federal block grant and not dependent on Texas legislative appropriations. She noted that they are currently conducting the needs assessment for FY 2020 which covers a five-year time period and consists of surveys, focus groups and key interviews. Goldstein reported on activities related to medical home and transition services.
  9. Texas Workforce Commission representative Jennifer Hines discussed initiatives related to pre-employment services.
  11. Disability Rights Texas representative Mary Faithfull reported on the Disability Policy Consortium Issues Brief document and noted that members could use that as a resource when making legislative visits.
  1. Public Policy Priorities and Advocacy Strategies
    Public Policy Director Scott Daigle provided an update on activities within the Texas Legislature. He discussed leadership priorities, committee assignments, and the appropriations bill including state agency LARs. Daigle also reviewed the TCDD Public Policy Priorities and gave tips for members to remember as they meet with legislative staff.
  3. Council members divided into small groups to rehearse their stories and talking points for the TCDD Meet and Greet event at the Capitol. Members prepared for questions and discussion on the priority areas for which they would participate.
  1. Guardianship Reform and Supported Decision-Making Legislative Agenda
    Guardianship Reform and Supported Decision-Making (GRSDM) Workgroup Coordinator Belinda Carlton discussed the history of guardianship reform and advances in supported decision-making activities during the 84th and 85th Texas Legislatures and provided updates on priorities for the 86th Texas Legislature. Priorities include:
    • Expanding the Guardianship Abuse, Fraud, And Exploitation Deterrence Program pilot to a statewide program,
    • Changing the term “ward” to “person with a guardian”,
    • Changing the basis for guardianship from determination of incapacity to determination of functional capacity
    • Improving representation by attorney ad-litem
    • Amend the definition of services and supports
    • Delete intellectual disability as basis for guardianship
    • Remove requirement for guardian approval before a forensic exam of a sexual assault survivor


Council Chair Durheim adjourned the Committee of the Whole at 11:50 AM.