Rehabilitation Services-Vocational Rehabilitation Grants to States
To assist States in operating comprehensive, coordinated, effective, efficient and accountable programs of vocational rehabilitation (VR); to assess, plan, develop, and provide VR services for individuals with disabilities, consistent with their strengths, resources, priorities, concerns, abilities, capabilities, and informed choice so they may prepare for and engage in competitive integrated employment.
Last Known Status
Agency: Department of Education
Office: Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services
Types of Assistance
Uses and Use Restrictions
Federal and State funds are used to cover the costs of providing VR services, which include: assessment, counseling, vocational and other training, job placement, reader services for the blind, interpreter services for the deaf, medical and related services and prosthetic and orthotic devices, rehabilitation technology, transportation to secure VR services, maintenance during rehabilitation, and other goods and services necessary for an individual with a disability to achieve an employment outcome. Services are provided to families of disabled individuals when such services contribute substantially to the rehabilitation of such individuals who are receiving VR services. Funds can also be used to provide VR services for the benefit of groups of individuals with disabilities including the construction and establishment of community rehabilitation programs.
Rehabilitation Act of 1973, ass amended,, Title I, Part A and B, Section 100-111.
State agencies in all States (including territories/possessions) designated as the State agency to administer the VR program may receive funds with the submission and approval a VR services portion of the Unified or Combined State plan in accordance with section 101(a) of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended.
In order to be eligible for VR services, an individual must have a physical and/or mental impairment, which, for such an individual, constitutes or results in a substantial impediment to employment, and requires VR services to achieve an employment outcome.
No Credentials or documentation are required. 2 CFR 200, Subpart E - Cost Principles applies to this program.
Application and Award Process
Preapplication coordination is not applicable. Environmental impact information is not required for this program. This program is eligible for coverage under E.O. 12372, "Intergovernmental Review of Federal Programs." An applicant should consult the office or official designated as the single point of contact in his or her State for more information on the process the State requires to be followed in applying for assistance, if the State has selected the program for review.
2 CFR 200, Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards applies to this program. State VR agencies are required to submit a VR services portion of the Unified or Combined State Plan describing the manner in which they will administer the VR and Supported Employment programs in their States. The State is not required to submit any policies, procedures or descriptions related to its State Plan that have been previously approved and demonstrate that the State currently meets applicable requirements of Title I of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) and the requirements of the Rehabilitation Act, as amended by Title IV of WIOA. However, State agencies are required to update certain attachments to the VR services portion of the Unified or Combined State Plan.
Grant awards are made to State VR agencies with an approved VR services portion of the Unified or Combined State plan. States are notified of their annual allotment under the funding formula. Grant funds are withdrawn under the Electronic Transfer System.
Jul 01, 2016 State must submit a Unified or Combined State Plans, including the VR services portion of the Unified or Combined State Plan, to the Department of Labor by March of 2016 for an effective date of July 1, 2016.
Range of Approval/Disapproval Time
Approval of the Unified or Combined State Plan, including approval of the VR services portion of that plan, is governed by sections 102 or 103 of Title I of WIOA.
Appeal procedures are governed by sections 102 or 103 of Title I of WIOA, as appropriate.
Formula and Matching Requirements
Statutory Formula: Title I, Part B, sectiion 110. (29 USC 730). Funds are distributed based on population weighted by per capita income. The statistical factors for fund allocation are: per capita income 3-year average by State (Bureau of Economic Analysis estimates) and U.S. total and State population (Annual Population Estimates, Bureau of the Census).
Matching Requirements: The matching requirement is 78.7 percent Federal and 21.3 percent Non-Federal funds ffor the total of all expenditures incurred under the VR program. . This program has a maintenance of effort (MOE) requirement. The MOE level is based on the amount of the State's non-Federal expenditures under the VR program for the Federal fiscal year two years earlier; see funding agency for further details. Each State is also required to reserve and use at least 15 percent of their Federal VR State Grant award to provide or arrange for the provision of pre-employment transition services for students with disabilities provided in accordance with section 113 of the Rehabilitation Act.
This program has MOE requirements, see funding agency for further details.
Length and Time Phasing of Assistance
Funds become available for obligations for the fiscal year for which they are appropriated and may remain available for an additional year if the matching requirement is met in the year of the appropriation. Grant awards are issued biannually (1st and 4th quarter). See the following for information on how assistance is awarded/released: Electronic Transfer.
Post Assistance Requirements
Program report: Annual and quarterly reports. No cash reports are required. Progress report: Annual and quarterly reports. Expenditure reports: semi-annual financial reports (Federal Financial Report (SF-425). Performance monitoring: The Rehabilitation Act requires the conduct of annual reviews and periodic on-site monitoring of whether a State VR agency is WIOA for core programs.
In accordance with the provisions of 2 CFR 200, Subpart F - Audit Requirements, non-Federal entities that expend financial assistance of $750,000 or more in Federal awards will have a single or a program-specific audit conducted for that year. Non-Federal entities that expend less than $750,000 a year in Federal awards are exempt from Federal audit requirements for that year, except as noted in 2 CFR 200.503. Conducted by ED Office of Inspector General and by site visits of regional staff. Both are periodic but no set schedule.
Case service records for individual consumers. Financial and programmatic records must be kept for a prescribed period of three years (2 CFR part 200, Subpart D—Post Federal Award Requirements).
Fiscal Year 2014: In FY 2014, State VR agencies assisted 200,000 individuals with disabilities. Fiscal Year 2015: No Current Data Available Fiscal Year 2016: No Current Data Available
(Formula Grants) FY 14 $3,027,104,000; FY 15 est $3,052,453,598; and FY 16 est $3,121,304,640
Range and Average of Financial Assistance
In FY 2015 annual allotments to States, including D.C. and Puerto Rico ranged from $10.1 million to $301.6 million, with a median award of $41.8 million. Grants to outlying areas ranged from $0.9 million to $42.1 million.
Regulations, Guidelines and Literature
Vocational Rehabilitation Regulations (34 CFR part 361). Rehabilitation Services Policy Directives and Technical Assistance Circulars. Uniform Guidance, 2 CFR part 200.
Regional or Local Office
Carol Dobak, Department of Education, OSERS Rehabilitation Services Administration 400 Maryland Ave., S.W., Washington , District of Columbia 20202 Email: Carol.Dobak@ed.gov
Phone: (202) 245-7325.
Examples of Funded Projects
Criteria for Selecting Proposals