Senior Community Service Employment Program

South Dakota Department of Labor

Program Year 2006

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PART 1 – PROJECT NARRATIVE Grant Year July 1, 2006 – June 30, 2007
SECTION 1 – STATE SENIOR EMPLOYMENT SERVICES COORDINATION PLAN:
How grant application supports the State Senior Services Coordination Plan.

The goals and objectives outlined in the State Senior Services Coordination Plan were used as a guide in developing this proposal. Any adjustments needed within the state in regard to service levels were taken into consideration for work to be done in the 20062007 Grant Year.

The issue of placing the older worker and how that can be accomplished is addressed with steps and plans to make that happen.

SECTION 2 – TECHNICAL APPROACH A. Plan of Action
The South Dakota Department of Labor (SDDOL) will adhere to the guidelines established for project operations by Title V of the Older Americans Act of 2000, as amended, the Older Worker Bulletins (OWB) issued by the U.S. Department of Labor, and other provisions incorporated by this agreement. SDDOL plans to operate the SCSEP through a Sub-Grant Agreement with Experience Works, Inc. SDDOL maintains accountability and oversight responsibility for operation of SCSEP.

(1)

Recruitment and Selection of Participants The SCSEP will be operated primarily in rural areas. Many eligible rural seniors live in isolated communities and are difficult to recruit using traditional recruitment methods. Consequently, key local organizations, churches, and community leaders will be

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contacted for assistance in identifying individuals with limited income who are 55 and older in need of SCSEP services. A strong outreach effort will coincide with cooperative relationships that have been established with aging, employment and training, and social service organizations. Persons who have been, or who currently are enrolled on the SCSEP, and former and current Host Agencies, will be encouraged to assist with recruitment. Brochures, posters, news releases, videotapes, and other public information materials to assist in recruitment efforts will also be developed.

When practical, vacancies will be listed in local Career Centers. Recruitment activities generally will be performed by the sub-grantee’s field representatives and designated SCSEP participants. Recruitment efforts shall, to the extent possible, ensure equitable participation by minorities, persons with disabilities, veterans and the spouses of veterans, persons with limited English-speaking abilities, eligible Native American individuals, and eligible individuals who have the greatest economic need, at least in proportion to their numbers in the areas served.

Each applicant's eligibility will be determined by an interview and will be documented on an eligibility intake form. To be eligible for the program, a person must meet the following criteria: a. b. c. Be 55 years of age or older; Have declared permanent residence within the state of enrollment; Be eligible to work in accordance with the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986 (IRCA); and

d.

Be a member of a family whose annual income does not exceed 125 percent of the applicable poverty guidelines, or be an individual who

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receives, or a member of a family that receives regular cash welfare payments. e. Be unemployed.

In selecting participants from among eligible applicants, the following priorities will be adhered to: (1) Eligible individuals with the greatest social and/or economic need and who are eligible minorities, limited English speakers, or Native Americans. (2) (3) Eligible individuals with the greatest economic need. Eligible individuals over the age of 60.

Following the above listed priorities for participant selection, preference will be given as follows: (1) Eligible individuals who are 60 years of age or older and are a. Veterans and qualified spouses who meet the special consideration criteria (if feasible) b. Veterans and qualified spouses who do not meet the special consideration criteria c. Non-veterans who meet the special consideration criteria (if feasible) d. Non-veterans who do not meet the special consideration criteria.

(2)

Eligible Individuals who are 55 to 59 years of age and are a. Veterans and qualified spouses who meet the special consideration criteria (if feasible) b. Veterans and qualified spouses who do not meet the special consideration criteria

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c. Non-veterans who meet the special consideration criteria (if feasible) d. Non-veterans who do not meet the special consideration criteria.

An individual's initial and continued eligibility for the SCSEP will be verified and documented during a face-to-face interview. If documentation is not available to determine eligibility, the individual may certify eligibility by signing the Income Worksheet’s Verification of Eligibility Information form. When such documentation is available, an applicant's or participant's refusal to produce the substantiating documentation may result in the denial of enrollment or continued enrollment.

Income eligibility will be computed by counting the individual's actual includable income by taking the last six months time two, starting with the period preceding the month in which the application or certification is completed.

(2)

Continued Eligibility for Enrollment in the SCSEP

Participants are recertified for continued eligibility at least once within the program year. Each participant’s income eligibility will be recertified by computing an annual includable income with appropriate documentation within the fourth quarter of the grant year.

A participant who is found to be ineligible for continued enrollment at the time of recertification through no fault of his/her own, or because the participant is over income, will receive a notice of disqualification for continued enrollment. That notice will inform the participant that his/her enrollment will terminate in 30 days, explain the reason(s) for exit, and will explain the participant's right to appeal the finding of ineligibility. When possible, participants who are found to be ineligible for the SCSEP will be referred to other sources of employment and income assistance.

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Should a participant be found ineligible for continued enrollment due to an intentional misrepresentation of fact, that participant shall be given notice of immediate termination and the reason for the exit. Recovery of all wages and benefits paid to a participant who obtained SCSEP services by knowingly providing false eligibility information may be sought. Eligibility records will be kept in each participant file maintained by each field operations coordinator and in the Regional Service Center in Waco, TX.

(3)

Physical Examinations

Host Agency supervisors and training providers will provide reasonable accommodation to qualified individuals with disabilities as required by the Americans with Disabilities Act unless providing the accommodation would cause undue hardship. This determination will be based on the nature and net cost of the accommodation needed and the overall financial resources of the host agency. Each participant will be offered the opportunity to take a free physical examination annually (referred to as a health screening). The Health Screening will be offered upon enrollment or within 60 days after active participation in a community service training assignment for which the participant receives paid wages and at the time of recertification and recorded on the Income Worksheet which is maintained in the participant files in the Regional Service Center and in each field operations coordinator’s office. The Health Screening will be performed by a health nurse or other medical practitioner, will be limited in scope, and will be regarded as a fringe benefit or service to the individual. Host agencies are encouraged to provide free health screenings for participants assigned to them. The sub-grantee reserves the right to designate the provider of all health screenings. Results of the screening will not be reported except voluntarily by the participant unless required by law and will be maintained in a separate, secure file to maintain confidentiality.

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A participant may be required to have a health screening at any time required by law or when the Host Agency, the grantee, or a designee possesses a reasonable belief that the participant's physical or mental condition indicates the potential for harm to the participant or others. A participant’s refusal to submit to an examination under these circumstances may be grounds for disciplinary action, up to and including termination of enrollment.

(4)

Orientation

As soon as practical, after a determination of eligibility, each participant will be provided with orientation. This orientation will generally cover the following types of information: the SCSEP’s and the grantee’s goals and objectives; SCSEP eligibility; Host Agency assignments; participant assessment, participant IEP responsibility, evaluation and transfer; community service training and employment opportunities; hours of work/training; wages and fringe benefits; supportive services; drug free workplace requirements; maintenance of effort prohibitions; nepotism; operation of motor vehicle restrictions; work schedules and time sheets; health and safety; grievance procedures; job search responsibilities; nondiscrimination and equal opportunity provisions including the right to file a discrimination complaint with the grantee or the Civil Rights Commission Director; assurances under the Privacy Act, training opportunities; responsibilities, rights, and duties of the participant and the Host Agency; permitted and prohibited political activities; and unsubsidized employment opportunities through local businesses and other services.

Orientation may be conducted by a sub-grantee staff member or a participant assistant, or through the use of an orientation videotape. The Eligibility Certification/Enrollment Agreement will document that the participant has received orientation.

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Each Host Agency Supervisor will receive orientation to ensure a clear understanding of Host Agency rights and responsibilities and program guidelines. This orientation will generally cover the information included in the sub-grantee’s calendar/handbook.

(5)

Assessment

An assessment of each participant's work history, skills and talents, physical capabilities, need for supportive services, employment assistance, and training will be performed prior to or upon enrollment to determine the most suitable available training assignment for the participant. This assessment may be completed in its entirety on applicants who have been determined eligible for the SCSEP, but who will not be immediately enrolled (i.e., who will be placed on a waiting list). Applicants who have been determined eligible, but for whom positions are not currently available, in essence will receive a "conditional offer of enrollment," the conditions being the availability of a training position and a suitable host agency.

The assessment will be made in consultation with the participant and will be based upon the individual's preferred occupational category, physical capabilities, work history, skills, aptitudes, career goals, potential for performing community service work assignments, potential for transition into unsubsidized employment, place of residence, supportive services needs, and personal interests. Skills testing may be conducted when appropriate to determine training and/or employment needs.

A copy of an assessment performed by another employment and training provider may be considered to satisfy the assessment requirement providing the assessment was prepared within the last 12 months.

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At least twice annually, an assessment will be administered for each participant to determine if the job aptitudes, readiness and preferences previously established continue to support the training and supportive needs of the participant or if there is a need for a revision in the employment plan. This assessment will be documented in the form of the participant’s Individual Employment Plan (IEP).

(6)

Individual Employment Plan (IEP)

An Individual Employment Plan (IEP) will be developed for each participant based upon their assessment in partnership with a sub-grantee representative. The initial IEP at enrollment will identify appropriate goals, employment and quality of life objectives, other services for the participant, and the strategy to attain goals.

The IEP will be reviewed and updated at least twice in a 12-month period or more often as needed to determine each participant's potential for transition to unsubsidized employment, to determine the appropriateness of each participant's assignment, and to evaluate the progress of each participant in meeting objectives of the employment plan. IEP updates will include appropriate information to modify the initial and most recent IEP completed.

Records of participant assessments, IEPs, and evaluations will be maintained as part of the participant's personnel file.

When a participant refuses to accept at least two referrals or job offers to unsubsidized employment consistent with his or her IEP, and no extenuating circumstances are determined, the participant may be exited from the program. The termination shall be subject to applicable appeal rights.

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(7) (a)

Assignment to Community Service Types of community service activities that will be emphasized in assigning participants and how they are chosen:

Meaningful training involving the delivery of essential community services that would not otherwise be provided;

The opportunity to learn new skills and enhance their potential for unsubsidized employment;

• •

Creation of new community services or the expansion of existing services; Improvement of direct services to the elderly and to the community in general, and especially to the economically disadvantaged; or

Involvement of Host Agencies that can and will provide all the support necessary for participants to carry out their SCSEP training assignments satisfactorily and ultimately, obtain employment off the program.

Special effort will be made to develop projects involving intergenerational activities and literacy training as well as to diversify projects and Host Agencies.

(b)

Methods used to match participants with community service training - Applicants

and participants will be assigned to Host Agencies based primarily upon individual assessments of their skills, aptitudes, interests, career goals, and training needs. Other factors considered in determining agency assignments include local community and agency needs, the availability of suitable training assignments, and the demonstrated commitment of qualified agencies to the SCSEP goals and objectives. Efforts will be made to assign each participant to a Host Agency site in or near the community where the participant resides. If appropriate, a participant may be assigned to a Host Agency

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site in a neighboring jurisdiction in which the grantee is authorized to operate in order to provide the best training or employment opportunity for the participant.

A participant may be transferred from a training assignment at any time it is determined that a transfer would be in the best interest of the participant, the local community, or the sub-grantee.

Participants may be transferred when necessary to encourage cooperation with placement goals. Reassignment may also occur when necessary to ensure that participants and Host Agencies fulfill their duties and obligations.

Participants will not be assigned to projects that would require them to participate in sectarian religious activities or partisan or nonpartisan political activities. When in the best interest of the participant, a participant may be placed in a nonpolitical assignment in a local government office or the office of a local elected official. These assignments will be closely monitored through field visits and other appropriate methods to ensure there are no political activities involved.

(c)

Extent to which participants will be placed in assignments involving the

administration of the project itself - Participants may be eligible for appointment to positions such as SCSEP Assistants, Administrative Assistants, Clerical Assistants, and other positions designed to assist with program administration and to provide direct services to SCSEP participants. Their duties will include helping participants find employment by preparing resumes, conducting job search skills training, working with employers to fill temporary, temporary to permanent, and permanent jobs. The duties of participants in these positions will be based on the needs of the sub-grantee’s staff

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member to whom he/she reports. Those duties may be very limited in scope and duration, and may vary from one individual to another.

The sub-grantee’s director has the discretion to allow participants in administrative positions to assist with a wide range of functional responsibilities, including but not limited to recruitment, orientation, assessment, evaluation, visitation, public awareness, coordination, training/job development, and generation of program income. Participants in administrative positions must fulfill basic program eligibility requirements. However, because of their unique contribution to the SCSEP, they may be paid a wage higher than the minimum wage, and may be assigned to work additional hours, as needed to fulfill program objectives. Participants will be encouraged to apply for administrative positions and staff positions, as appropriate, when vacancies occur.

(d)

Types of Host Agencies to be used and the procedures and criteria for selecting

work assignments - To be eligible to serve as a Host Agency, an agency must be either: (1) an agency of local, state or federal government, or (2) a non-profit agency that performs services for the general public and has obtained 501(c)(3) tax exempt status from the IRS. Host Agencies will be expected to contribute, in the aggregate, at least 10% of the cost of the Experience Works SCSEP project by providing direct participant supervision and other necessary resources and support.

Project assignments should generally provide participants with the opportunity to learn new skills or improve existing skills, develop self-confidence and positive self-esteem, make a meaningful contribution to his/her community and to the Host Agency, and obtain training and employment off the program. Participants may not be assigned to work involving the construction, operation or maintenance of any facility used, or to be

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used, as a place for sectarian religious instruction or worship, or to work which primarily benefits religious institutions.

(e)

Average number of hours in participant work weeks - Participants generally will

be offered a minimum of 20 hours of work per week on average.

Host Agencies will be required to prepare training/work schedules for each participant in accordance with established guidelines. Those training/work schedules will be maintained by the Host Agency and will be periodically monitored by a sub-grantee representative.

Host Agencies may not require nor permit participants to volunteer hours of work in the performance of the same or similar duties as those for which the participant receives SCSEP pay.

(f)

Average participant wage rate - Participants will be paid an hourly wage equivalent to the higher of the Federal or applicable state minimum wage, or the prevailing wage rate paid for participants in similar positions within the state. Monetary bonuses may be available to recognize participants for outstanding contributions to the program, their communities, or host agencies. Participants in administrative positions may be paid more than the minimum wage, as determined appropriate for their positions by the sub-grantee.

(g)

Participant Fringe Benefits: Participants will be provided with the benefits listed below: • FICA

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• •

Workers’ Compensation Health Screening (if desired)

(h)

Procedures for assuring that participants are given adequate worksite

supervision - Primary responsibility for the day-to-day supervision and training of participants resides with the Host Agency. Sub-grantee representatives will visit each worksite, at least semi-annually, to ensure that Host Agencies are providing participants with the training and job-site supervision necessary for safe, productive, and effective work, and that the participant's job duties and hours are consistent with applicable

(i)

Limit the amount of time in community service: There will not be a set time limit

for participation in SCSEP.

(8)

Training During Community Service Assignment and Other Training:

During enrollment, participants generally will receive training designed to promote the development of new job skills and enhance existing skills; encourage safe work practices and a healthy work environment; build self-confidence and positive selfesteem; develop effective job search skills and positive work habits; and provide information about supportive services, available types of assistance, and issues that affect them, including but not limited to Social Security benefits, personal health and nutrition, housing, and tax and retirement laws. Training that is not necessarily related to a participant’s Host Agency training assignment, but which could lead to unsubsidized employment, will be obtained for participants whenever possible through coordination with educational institutions, literacy councils, the aging network, community-based organizations, human service agencies, career centers, and job training programs.

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Utilization of the Apprenticeship Program and Disability Program training opportunities will be emphasized for participants needing this specific training through coordination efforts. When appropriate the training may be paid by these programs while the wages for time in training is paid by SCSEP to the participant.

SDDOL plans to utilize On-the-Job Experience (OJE) training to assist participants in situations where the goal to obtain employment is with an employer that requires specific skills that are not attainable through a community service assignment. After a minimum of two weeks at a community service assignment, the participant can be placed on an OJE. Depending on the circumstances and depth of training required, there may be an offer to the employer of (1) full reimbursement of wages (100%) for no longer than four weeks of training; (2) or a 50% reimbursement of wages when training lasts no more than 12 weeks; or (3) 100% wages paid to the participant when the OJE lasts no more than 12 weeks. Significant follow-up will be done on a weekly basis to handle problems and provide support. A participant can only be offered the OJE training opportunity once in any 12 month period. If the employer provides good training and does retain qualified participants after the OJE is complete, they may have the opportunity for OJE training contracts no more than 5 times per year for the same job category.

OJE’s can be written with employers across county/state lines. The employer may be either public or private but not an active host agency. The contract must detail specific skills to be learned, the timeline and benchmarks to be achieved, the scheduled hours the participant is to work each week, and the number of weeks the contract will run. Information on the significant follow-up for problem resolution must be stated in the contract. The amount the employer is to be reimbursed or the amount the participant will be paid (the prevailing wage) must be on the contract. There also needs to be

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clarification that the work time per week is not to exceed 40 hours for the participant. OJE training may be combined with other training activities such as community service, classroom training, lectures, seminars, individual instruction, or specialized training. This training opportunity will be available throughout the state with the expectation that OJE’s will be developed in high growth jobs such as truck driver, clerical, retail, CAN, HHA, data entry, customer service and technology jobs. Participants will work an average of 30 hours a week; employers will be reimbursed an average of $1,000 and the projects will last an average of six weeks.

Virtually all SCSEP participants receive some type of training designed to assist them in performing their SCSEP training assignments and to obtain employment off the program. This training may focus on developing and improving job skills, obtaining a basic education, and on developing effective job search skills, positive work habits, and a healthy self-esteem. Participants may or may not receive compensation for time and travel relating to job training. When possible, training will be obtained for participants at no cost to the SCSEP through locally available resources such as Host Agencies, career centers, WIA providers, literacy councils, and educational institutions.

In appropriate circumstances, SCSEP eligible individuals will be co-enrolled in training programs provided under WIA. Costs associated with the training will then be shared by the SCSEP and WIA. For example, the participant may receive SCSEP wages and benefits for time spent in training provided under WIA.

(9)

Supportive Services

When a participant needs personal support, or is faced with a potential barrier to employment such as the need for health care, housing, transportation, legal assistance, or

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training in basic literacy skills, the participant may be assisted by referring him/her to local service providers or by obtaining the service directly through locally available resources. When possible, supportive services will be provided to participants at no cost to the SCSEP and must be consistent with the needs identified in the assessment and documented in the Individual Employment Plan.

Incidentals necessary for the participant to perform his/her job may be provided, if they are not available from the Host Agency or other sources. These incidentals may include, but are not limited to work shoes, uniforms, safety glasses, eyeglasses, rent subsidy, and hand tools.

Supportive services will be made available as needed to those participants who have been successful in their job search for the first six months of their employment. These services are provided through free local resources or paid from SCSEP funds and may include transportation costs, health care, special job-related or personal counseling, incidentals, child and adult care or temporary shelter.

(10)

Participant Transportation

Every effort will be made to assign participants to training assignments that are within a reasonable distance of the participant's place of residence. An attempt will also be made to help participants obtain transportation necessary for unsubsidized employment t opportunities and to perform their SCSEP assignments by working with the participant's Host Agency and by accessing other community resources. In appropriate situations transportation pooling arrangements will be facilitated.

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The participants may be reimbursed directly for transportation costs related to their SCSEP work assignments, training, and/or job search responsibilities. The reimbursement rate for participants who use privately owned automobiles for transportation will not exceed the mileage rate established by the General Services Administration.

(11)

Placement into Unsubsidized Employment

Every participant will be assisted to improve his/her economic condition by obtaining employment off the program where feasible. Every effort will be made to place 28% (24) participants by actively promoting the transition of participants into unsubsidized employment. Participants will be strongly encouraged to use the experience gained through the community service assignment to acquire new skills or revitalize existing skills to facilitate successful entry or re-entry into the competitive labor market.

Follow-up surveys will be made of participants placed into unsubsidized employment to determine the quality and success of the placement. Those follow-up surveys will be conducted at 30 days after placement and again approximately thirteen months after placement. The follow-up surveys will normally be done by phone or mail by the subgrantee’s field personnel.

To promote unsubsidized placement, individuals applying for SCSEP enrollment and agencies applying to be Host Agencies will be informed that eligible seniors will receive skill training, rather than "permanent" subsidized employment. Efforts will be made to (1) identify job openings, training resources, and job search assistance for participants, (2) improve public awareness of the SCSEP and the abilities of older workers, (3) develop partnerships with private employers and business organizations, and (4)

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coordinate with other employment and training programs, SCSEP sponsors, career centers, Job Corps, Carl D. Perkins Vocational Education sponsors, the aging network, and WIA. Staff will utilize local economic development agencies to find where and when jobs will be coming to communities to approach the businesses about hiring stable older workers with experience. There will be an emphasis on finding jobs in the health care industry and hospitality as shown to be growing employment needs in South Dakota.

The U.S. Department of Labor criteria for determining when to count an unsubsidized placement will be followed. Consistent with past practice, when possible, individuals on the waiting list will be assisted as well as other unemployed or underemployed individuals, and other older individuals who need employment. This assistance may include appropriate referrals to other agencies, resume preparation, job search training, skills training, placement into temporary, temporary to permanent, and permanent jobs through a staffing service.

(12)

Maximum Duration of Enrollment:

The grantee does not elect to set a maximum duration of participant enrollment in SCSEP in South Dakota.

(13)

Terminations

a) Provision of False Information: Participants intentionally providing false information for eligibility shall be given notice of immediate termination and the reason for the exit. Recovery of all wages and benefits paid to a participant in these circumstances may be sought. b) Recertification Income Eligibility: Participants found to be ineligible at the time of recertification through no fault of his/her own will receive a notice of disqualification for

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continued enrollment. This notice will inform the participant that his/her enrollment will terminate in 35 days, explain the reason(s) for exit, and will explain the participant’s right to appeal the finding of ineligibility. c) Incorrect Initial Eligibility Determination: Should a review of the initial eligibility information find an unintentional error in eligibility determination, the participant will receive a notice of disqualification for enrollment. This notice will inform the participant that his/her enrollment will end in 35 days, explain the reason(s) for the exit and provide the right to appeal the finding. d) The grantee will exercise the option to terminate a participant based upon his/her failure to act in accordance with the Individual Employment Plan (IEP) as provided in Older Worker Bulletin 96-11. Participants will be informed about the grantee’s termination policy during orientation. In addition, the IEP-related termination policy will be included in the sub-grantee’s calendar/handbook.

The IEP will reflect the goals of the participant and will be jointly agreed upon by the participant and a sub-grantee representative. When a participant refuses to positively act on two or more referrals made in response to the IEP, the participant may be subject to disciplinary action up to and including exit. The cause for the participant’s failure to comply with the IEP will be explored and a corrective action notice will be provided to him/her. The participant will then be given a period of 30 days to take corrective action. When needed, subsequent notices will follow a progressive pattern from a warning to exit, and will cite the specific cause of action. IEP related activities may include but are not limited to the following: job openings, sabotaging a job interview, training opportunities, community service assignments, career center registration, WIA coenrollment opportunities, supportive service assistance, and other IEP-related referrals.

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IEPs will be modified when appropriate to be consistent with mutually agreed upon changes in the participant’s goals and plan of action. A minimum of two levels of review is required prior to exit.

(14)

Applicant, Employee and Participant Complaint Resolution

SDDOL, along with the sub-grantee, is committed to providing an environment for its participants that is free of discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, or political affiliation or belief.

The sub-grantee has appointed an Equal Employment Opportunity Officer (“EEO Officer”) to ensure nondiscrimination and equal opportunity for the individuals who participate in SCSEP through the WIA One-Stop System. This EEO Officer is Mr. Bill Dodson, Human Resources Acting Director, Experience Works, Inc., 2200 Clarendon Blvd, Suite 1000, Arlington, VA 22201, (703) 522-7272.

Any participant who believes that he or she has been the victim of discrimination should file a complaint in accordance with the following procedures.

1.

Where and When to File a Complaint A complaint of discrimination should be filed within 180 days with either: (i) The participant’s Field Operations Coordinator, the participant’s Director at 120 S. Indiana Avenue, Sioux Falls, SD 57103, (605) 332-7991; or the EEO Officer at the addresses listed above; or

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(ii) The Director, Civil Rights Center (CRC), U.S. Department of Labor, 200 Constitution Avenue, N.W., Room N-4123, Washington, D.C. 20210. 2. Form of Complaint

A complaint of discrimination should be detailed and preferably be in writing in order to assist in understanding and investigation of the complaint. A discrimination complaint filed with the CRC must be in writing and must include the following information: (i) The name and address of the complainant or other method of contact; (ii) A detailed description of the discrimination, including the circumstances in which it occurred, the dates on which it occurred, and the identities of the individuals involved; and (iii) The signature of the complainant or authorized representative. A complaint may be filed using a Complaint Information and Privacy Act Consent Form. These forms may be obtained from the EEO Officer or from the CRC. 3. Initial Written Notice

Upon receipt of a complaint of discrimination, the EEO Officer shall immediately give notice of the complaint to the sub-grantee Director of Human Resources and Legal Counsel. Within five (5) calendar days of the receipt by the sub-grantee of the complaint, the sub-grantee shall give Initial Written Notice to the complainant that contains the following information: (i) An acknowledgement that the complaint has been received, and (ii) Notice that the complainant has the right to be represented by an attorney or other individual of their choice in the complaint process. 4. Written Statement of the Issue(s)

Within 15 calendar days of the receipt of the complaint, the sub-grantee shall give a Written Statement of the Issue(s) to the complainant that includes the following information:

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(i) A list of the issues raised in the complaint, and (ii) For each issue, a statement whether the sub-grantee will accept the issue for investigation or reject the issue, and the reason for each rejection. 5. Investigation

The sub-grantee shall, as soon as reasonable and practicable after the date of the Statement of the Issue(s), conduct a fact-finding investigation of the issues raised in the complaint. 6. Resolution Attempt

After the Investigation is complete, the sub-grantee shall attempt to resolve the complaint either through direct negotiation with the complainant or through use of Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR). The complainant shall have the choice of which resolution method to use. If the complainant chooses to use ADR, the following procedures apply: (i) The sub-grantee shall have the sole responsibility to select the method of ADR used, i.e., mediation or arbitration, depending on the availability and cost of the ADR services in locations convenient to both the grantee and the complainant. The cost of ADR shall be borne evenly by the parties. (ii) If an agreement is reached under ADR, the sub-grantee shall notify the complainant that in the event of breach of the agreement, the non-breaching party may file a complaint with the CRC within 30 days of the date the alleged breach is discovered. (iii) If an agreement is not reached under ADR, the sub-grantee shall inform the complainant that he or she may file a complaint with the CRC within 180 days of the alleged unfair treatment. 7. Written Notice of Final Action

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Within 90 days of the date on which the complaint was received by the subgrantee, a Notice of Final Action shall be sent to the complainant by the sub-grantee. This Notice shall include the following: (i) For each issue raised in the complaint, a statement of either the subgrantee’s decision on the issue and an explanation of the reasons underlying the decision, or a description of the way the parties resolved the issue; and

(ii) Notice to the complainant that he or she has the right to file a grievance with
CRC within 30 days of the date of the Notice of Final Action if he or she is dissatisfied with the final action taken by the sub-grantee.

Every SCSEP participant will be given the following at application:

Equal Opportunity is the Law
It is against the law for this recipient of Federal financial assistance to discriminate on the following bases: • Against any individual in the United States, on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, political affiliation or belief; and • Against any beneficiary of programs financially assisted under Title I of the Workforce Investment Act of 1998 (WIA), on the basis of the beneficiary’s citizenship/status as a lawfully admitted immigrant authorized to work in the United Stated, or his or her participation in any WIA Title I-financially assisted program or activity.

The recipient must not discriminate in any of the following areas: 1) Deciding who will be admitted, or have access, to any WIA Title I-financially assisted program in, or treating any person with regard to, such a program or activity; or

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2) Making employment decisions in the administration of, or in connection with, such a program or activity.

What to Do if You Believe You Have Experienced Discrimination If you think that you have been subjected to discrimination under a WIA Title I-financially assisted program or activity, you may file a complaint within 180 days from the date of the alleged violation with either: 1) The recipient’s Equal Opportunity Officer (or the person whom the recipient has designated for this purpose); or 2) The Director, Civil Rights Center (CRC), U.S. Department of Labor, 200 Constitution Avenue, NW, Room N-4123, Washington, DC 20210.

If you file your complaint with the recipient, you must wait either until the recipient issues a written Notice of Final Action, or until 90 days have passed (whichever is sooner), before filing with the Civil Rights Center (see address above).

If the recipient does not give you a written Notice of Final Action within 90 days of the day on which you filed your complaint, you do not have to wait for the recipient to issue that Notice before filing a complaint with the CRC. However, you must file your CRC complaint within 30 days of the 90-day deadline (in other words, within the 120 days after the day on which you filed your complaint with the recipient).

If the recipient does give you a written Notice of Final action on your complaint, but you are dissatisfied with the decision or resolution, you may file a complaint with CRC. You must file your CRC complaint within 30 days of the date on which you received the Notice of Final Action.

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(15)

Over-enrollment

The sub-grantee Director may make temporary or supplemental appointments, which are those over and above the authorized number of positions in a county, when deemed reasonably necessary to expend budget allocations and promote program goals. The number of temporary positions will not exceed 20 percent of the total number of state SCSEP authorized positions.

Temporary participants may be assigned to training sites located in counties in which the grantee does not have authorized positions. Such assignments would be to support any employment and training or community service projects operated by the sub-grantee.

"Temporary participants" will acknowledge their temporary status in writing. They will be enrolled at the regular rate of pay and generally will be moved into regular enrollment positions when such positions become available in their county. The conversion of temporary participants to regular enrollment status generally will be determined county by county on the basis of seniority and in accordance with equitable distribution goals.

Should reduction in enrollment be required because of a decrease in funding, an increase in the minimum wage, or similar circumstances, every effort will be made to reduce enrollment through attrition. When attrition presents an inadequate solution, more drastic action such as reduced work hours, may be required. Should affirmative measures be required to decrease enrollment, participants in non-administrative temporary positions will be the first selected for layoff. Within the group of temporaries, priority for continuing enrollment will generally be given first to participants who have the greatest economic need, and second, to participants age sixty and over with a

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preference for veterans and qualified spouses of veterans. Should enrollment reductions be required from among regular participants, the same priorities will apply.

Temporary Enrollment Agreements/Eligibility Certification forms will be signed by individuals enrolled for short periods. A copy of these documents will be kept in the participant's file.

(16)

Maintenance of Effort (MOE)

Participants will be placed in Host Agency training assignments that augment existing services and establish new services that would not otherwise be provided. Project assignments should increase employment opportunities and not cause: a. the displacement of currently employed workers, including partial displacement such as a reduction in hours of non-overtime work, wages, or employment benefits; b. the impairment of existing contracts for services; c. the substitution of Federal funds for other funds in connection with work that would otherwise be performed; or d. the substitution of SCSEP services for existing federally assisted jobs.

In addition, participants may not be assigned to work that is the same or substantially the same as work performed by a person who is on layoff status. The interpretations of maintenance of effort restrictions contained in the sub-grantee’s SCSEP Guidelines manual will be followed absent other guidance from the Department of Labor.

(17)

Procedures for Payroll and Payment of Workers’ Compensation costs

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The payment of participant training costs is done by processing timesheets completed by the participant and approved by the Host Agency supervisor every two weeks and submitted by mail or fax to the sub-grantee’s Regional Service Center. Approximately $23,000 is paid annually for workers’ compensation premiums. All workers’ compensation premiums will be the responsibility of the sub-grantee to cover. Total workers’ compensation medical spent to date for 2005-06 is $43,224.04 and the total indemnity spent to date is $2110.25.

(18)

Collaboration

Strong partnerships with agencies and organizations serving the elderly poor and rural areas have consistently been developed. To the extent feasible, cooperative relationships have been established with the Department of Health and Human Services, Adult Services and Aging, Department of Social Services; other Senior Community Service Employment Program grantees; Department of Agriculture; Social Security Administration; career center operators, Workforce Investment/Development Boards, and other providers of employment and training services; Carl D. Perkins Vocational Education providers; Vocational Rehabilitation services; and other organizations and agencies.

The sub-grantee will enhance its ability to serve those who are older and/or economically disadvantaged by using its SCSEP resources to develop effective public/private partnerships and cooperative agreements with foundations, corporations, business organizations, and private employers. Grants/contracts will be developed with other agencies for the purpose of augmenting existing services and providing critical services such as outreach assistance, job placement assistance, skills training assistance, and information on Supplemental Security Income (SSI), food stamps, and

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other public assistance programs. Public/private partnerships, cooperative agreements and contracts will similarly be developed to better meet critical, basic needs of the participants, other older persons, and local communities. Coordination opportunities will be pursued with the welfare system, and particularly welfare to work programs. In addition, the sub-grantee will work with providers of youth employment and training to develop effective intergenerational program models, which may include cooperative agreements and contracts/grants for the operation of youth programs.

The sub-grantee will aggressively continue to seek opportunities to develop effective partnerships with the private sector and business organizations, other organizations that operate employment and training programs, and programs funded under welfare legislation, the National and Community Service Act, Workforce Investment Act (WIA), and other workforce development legislation in its effort to expand training, employment, and community service opportunities available to SCSEP participants and other older and disadvantaged individuals. Affirmative steps will be taken to access WIA resources for eligible individuals by referring job ready participants to the career centers or coenrolling those participants that need job search skills to be successful in their employment efforts.

SCSEP resources will be directed to support a wide range of activities designed to provide eligible individuals with WIA training and employment-related assistance. These activities will include, among others, staff time, travel and expenses to participate in joint planning sessions; to attend the Workforce Development Council meetings; and to develop and implement training programs for eligible individuals and SCSEP/WIA staff.

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Factual and technical information will be provided about the SCSEP and their activities to members of Congress, the state legislature, the Governor, and other elected officials and their staff. This information will be provided on an on-going basis, and may include quarterly progress reports, informational visits, annual reports, and the like.

During National Employ the Older Worker Week, the sub-grantee conducts various activities to promote and highlight the employment of older Americans. As a part of these activities, a search will be conducted for the outstanding older worker from South Dakota. The selected honoree attends the Prime Time Award celebration and related activities held in the Washington, D.C. area in October and the state celebration held in the honoree’s home area either before or after the DC event.

Coordination activities will be done with information technologies (IT) companies and training providers to promote and develop training and employment opportunities for SCSEP eligible individuals and other unemployed or underemployed mature workers. Training will be offered via computer labs as identified through collaboration with other training providers.

(B)

Performance Standards and Reporting Requirements

Performance Standards: The number of authorized positions for this State Plan will be 84 the USDOL determined state allocated positions awarded to SDDOL by the Governor. SDDOL sub-grants SCSEP to Experience Works, an agency that is also authorized by USDOL with Federal slots. The State / Federal programs will be coordinated seamlessly.

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1.

SDDOL/Experience Works will place at least 29 percent (24) of the state allocated positions into unsubsidized employment.

2.

SDDOL/Experience Works will serve 157 percent of the authorized positions, (132) participants based on the state allocated positions.

3.

SDDOL/Experience Works will serve 65 percent of the enrollment that are “most in need.”

4.

SDDOL/Experience Works retention rate has been set at 61 percent by USDOL.

Data Collection and Reporting: Implementation of the performance standards will be accomplished by training of staff and staff assistants of the sub-grantee. Spreadsheets and reports have been developed to track performance. Performance reports will be submitted timely as required.

Reporting requirements will be met use of the existing forms that have been carefully changed and added to so that all USDOL required information is collected for input into the national database. Each sub-grantee field staff person currently has a computer with access to the Internet. Some sub-grantee participant assistants currently also have computers with the sub-grantee’s goal to provide all eventually with computers and the training needed in their use. Data entry responsibilities reside in the sub-grantee’s Regional Service Center by staff with excellent computer equipment and access to the Internet through a Wide Area Network. With time, upgrading of equipment may be needed for continued processing of the data. Staff and assistants will continually receive training in computer software and completion of forms to assure the information is accurately collected and entered into the database system. Reports will be generated on an established schedule for the sub-grantee Director, Manager and field staff. Should the sub-grantee not remain as operator of this grant, all the files will become the

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property of the grantee. Data is currently uploaded to the SPARQ system from Experience Works’ Lawson system. The sub-grantee was found to have excellent records and provided uploads on schedule.

C.

Equitable Distribution All SCSEP providers of services in South Dakota work cooperatively to improve the equitable distribution (ED) of SCSEP positions using the 2000 Census data. This new Census data required very little change in positions per county from the 1990 Census figures. There are no counties that are significantly over or under-served with a variance of 1-4 of their equitable share based on the U. S. Census 2000 data. The sub-grantee Director will participate in equitable distribution meetings and submit ED reports as requested. If the sub-grantee Director shall continue to be responsible for equitable distribution in the state, ED meetings will be scheduled to prepare the state ED report either in person or by telephone.

Any ED imbalances will be corrected through attrition and the transfer of participants. The displacement of current participants will be avoided whenever possible.

SECTION 3 – GEOGRAPHIC AREAS TO BE SERVED
List of where project will be conducted.

Coordination with the private sector and business community will be done to promote employment and training opportunities for unemployed and/or underemployed older individuals throughout the state of South Dakota. The specific areas and distribution of positions is listed in the attached “2006-2007 Authorized Positions-South Dakota” document.

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SECTION 4 – PROGRAM ADMINISTRATION A. Organizational Structure - Grantee

The majority of employment and training programs in the state of South Dakota are provided under the umbrella of the South Dakota Department of Labor (SDDOL). SDDOL, through the network of One-Stop Career Centers, has developed a system that is customer oriented and makes maximum use of current technology to reach the greatest number of customers. Employers and job seekers have direct access through Internet technology or personal contact with One-Stop staff to assist in the employment and training process. The system is able to access the expertise and programs of partner entities such as education, rehabilitation, economic development, social services, and others as may be appropriate.

As a single statewide service delivery area (SDA), the leadership and vision for South Dakota’s One-Stop Career Center System has come from the South Dakota Workforce Development Council (SDWDC). Under this structure, key employment and training programs like WIA, Wagner-Peyser, Unemployment Insurance, and Veterans' employment and training programs are brought together with the interests of economic development, vocational technical education, basic education, and vocational rehabilitation. South Dakota’s system capitalizes on the strengths of education, labor, rehabilitation, and social services to benefit all segments of our population. Youth, adults, dislocated workers, disabled individuals, and older workers will have the opportunity to utilize training and employment services for their individual employment and training needs. The SDWDC was formed to maintain the momentum for economic development and vitality by better connecting workforce strategies to economic needs. The SDWDC is comprised of a majority of private sector members who represent the state's employers, labor unions, community leaders, and representatives of five state

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agencies including the Secretary of Labor, Secretary of Education and Cultural Affairs, Secretary of Human Services, Commissioner of the Governor's Office of Economic Development, and the Executive Director of the Board of Regents. The SDWDC members share a common purpose: to improve the services to employers and their current and future employees by streamlining the delivery of workforce and training services.

B.

Subproject Management – Sub-Grantee

Experience Works operates under the direction of a President, who also serves as its chief executive officer. The President directs staff that primarily works out of Experience Works' national office in Arlington, Virginia. The national staff provides general and technical support to Experience Works staff assigned to 11 multi-state offices across the country. Program offices are typically staffed by a Regional Director and appropriate field and office personnel. Two Regional Service Centers under the leadership of a Regional Director provide administrative and payroll services to multi-state programs. Multi-state staff under the leadership of a Regional Director is responsible for the direct implementation of the program at the local level, from the initial recruitment of participants and the development of Host Agency assignments to the transition of participants off the program. Participants are assigned to local Host Agencies who provide the day-to-day supervision of project activities. Experience Works coordinates the operations of SCSEP in SD with the multi-state Regional Director.

C.

Training of Subproject (Local) Staff

Staff training and development are national priorities for Experience Works. Field and office staff generally participates in at least one national leadership training conference annually, attend state and local training programs and seminars, and travel to various

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other state SCSEP and workforce development system projects to observe and learn. The Regional Director and Manager of Workforce Services have been designated to ensure that new staff are promptly and properly trained, that existing staff are motivated and understand program requirements and expectations, and that SCSEP goals and objectives are achieved. Additional training is provided by a variety of national and state staff on an "as needed" basis. Information / directives received from USDOL by the grantee are forwarded as appropriate to the sub-grantee’s project director.

D.

Project Monitoring

SDDOL is responsible for the development, approval and operation of all contracts and sub-grants, and requires that its contractors and sub-grantees adhere to the requirements of the Act, the regulations, and other applicable laws. SDDOL also requires contractors and sub-grantees to maintain effective control and accountability over all funds, property and other assets covered by a contract or sub-grant. In addition, SDDOL requires that contractors and sub-grantees maintain and make available for review by the grantee and Department of Labor all records pertaining to the operations of programs under the contract and sub-grants. SDDOL has developed a monitoring system and will conduct regular monitoring of the SCSEP sub-grantee (Experience Works).

South Dakota’s SCSEP has one sub-grantee, Experience Works (EW). Project monitoring is performed on an annual basis during the recertification phase in the month of May. The SCSEP State Coordinator visits the regional office where the EW Regional Director, EW Manager of Workforce Service, EW Field Operations Coordinator (FOC), and SCSEP participants assemble to conduct training and recertification. During this time, the SCSEP State Coordinator reviews the SCSEP clients’ records ensuring

35

qualifying criteria for the program is met, and that the records are kept accurate and up to date. The review includes a random sample of client applications and other participant records for completeness and accuracies, including the following items: 1. Participant Record Review – Eligibility Determination &/or Participant Records 2. Financial Management Integrity – Participant Payroll System, Accounting System, Financial Status Procedures, Cash Management, Procurement, Property Control, Travel Procedures, and Audits. 3. Administrative Review – Staffing and Staff Payroll, Grantee Self-Assessment, Grantee Linkage Efforts. 4. Validation of Reported Outcomes – Financial Status Report and Quarterly Progress Report. 5. Review of Statements in Planning Documents and Regulatory Requirements – Notice of Intent, Responsibility Review, Program Management Systems, Master Plan, and Comprehensive Annual Plan.

A formal validation report is generated once the process is complete. We follow-up the recertification phase with a formal letter identifying what needs to be corrected or a close-out letter which would indicate the official monitoring has been completed with no discrepancies. If there were discrepancies that required attention, a close-out letter would follow after they were corrected.

Experience Works is advised to conduct year-round self-monitoring. Through this process, the project director will be able to identify problems before they disrupt services or program compliance.

E.

Financial Monitoring

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As per the sub-grantee Agreement between South Dakota SCSEP and Experience Works, funds are distributed from SD SCSEP to Experience Works on a monthly basis. At this time, SD SCSEP financial representative reviews funds expended from the previous month and the total year-to-date. The funding process is also reviewed on a quarterly basis during the federal reporting phase. No formal validation of financial reports takes place with the exception of the SF-269 which is completed quarterly.

Internally, Experience Works, Inc. continuously monitors the performance of its grantsupported activities to ensure that time schedules are met, project goals are accomplished, and performance expectations, quality standards, and legal requirements are satisfied. This is accomplished by use of: (1) a computerized program and fiscal management information system; (2) program reports and evaluation studies; (3) on-site monitoring; (4) the internal auditing of fiscal and program management; (5) funds management, property, supply, accounting, bookkeeping and budget allocation controls and reports; (6) reviews by technical and professional personnel; and (7) equitable distribution monitoring.

Program compliance is emphasized as a goal. The program auditing and monitoring system has been carefully designed to ensure the effective review of program functions that are crucial to the effectiveness of the SCSEP, while providing staff with practical recommendations that will enable them to build on program strengths and improve program operations.

A standardized internal compliance guide has been developed to assist state programs in the compliance area. The Regional Service Centers that maintain program files and bookkeeping responsibilities receive a fiscal and program quality review at least once

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every 18 months, and more frequently if needed. They also receive periodic monitoring visits by national staff that report directly to the Vice-President for Program Compliance, and are conducted in accordance with established procedures. The standards for these compliance reviews include applicable SCSEP regulations and laws, Older Worker Bulletins, Experience Works policy guidelines and procedures, and Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Circulars.

Written reports are prepared at the conclusion of each program quality review. These reports list observations and make recommendations for areas that need improvement, and provide recommendations to improve or enhance systems affecting program quality and compliance. Regional/National Directors are required to respond in writing and take prompt, corrective action in response to findings contained in the program quality reports. All observations and recommendations must be addressed before closing an audit. All written monitoring reports and subsequent follow-up responses are made a part of Experience Works' permanent files.

In the event of questioned costs or an audit disallowance, Experience Works will adhere to the following policy: Repayment of questioned costs or disallowances resulting from an isolated and innocent mistake may be waived by the President. Appropriate action will be taken to prevent the recurrence of such mistakes. However, should the disallowance be the result of gross negligence or willful misconduct, the President may demand repayment from any responsible individuals.

F.

Audits

Experience Works' audit will be an "organization-wide" audit performed under OMB Circular A-133 guidelines. An outside accounting firm will perform the audits.

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SDDOL audits are performed annually, under OMB Circular A-133 guidelines. An outside accounting firm currently performs the audits.

SECTION 5. CONTINGENCY PLAN FOR PARTICIPANTS: In counties that were shown to be over-served according to the U. S. Census 2000 data, reductions will be accomplished by attrition and not lay-off of participants. When the change in Equitable Distribution shows counties with under-enrollment, steps will be taken to enroll participants in these areas.

Those participants affected by a grant competition will receive written notification that they will be transferred to a different SCSEP provider, when that transition will take place, and assuring them that their new provider will be in contact with them to gather their enrollment information so they can continue working and being paid without interruption. The paycheck for their final work as an Experience Works participant would be issued in September. Host Agencies affected by this same grant competition will also receive notification of these transfers.

For those participants affected by transition to a different SCSEP provider, Experience Works will provide a file containing the latest Participant Application form, Job Description form, and current Host Agency information.

Should participants not want to be transferred to a different SCSEP provider, every effort possible will be made to find suitable employment and/or training for these individuals. Job search activities such as resumes, training on job interviewing, completing of applications, etc. will be offered also.

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