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e-CFR data is current as of March 1, 2021

Title 45Subtitle BChapter XIIISubchapter CPart 1326Subpart B → §1326.20


Title 45: Public Welfare
PART 1326—DEVELOPMENTAL DISABILITIES FORMULA GRANT PROGRAMS
Subpart B—Protection and Advocacy for Individuals With Developmental Disabilities (PADD)


§1326.20   Agency designated as the State Protection and Advocacy System.

(a) The designating official must designate the State official or public or private agency to be accountable for proper use of funds and conduct of the Protection and Advocacy System.

(b) An agency of the State or private agency providing direct services, including guardianship services, may not be designated as the agency to administer the Protection and Advocacy System.

(c) In the event that an entity outside of the State government is designated to carry out the program, the designating official or entity must assign a responsible State official to receive, on behalf of the State, notices of disallowances and compliance actions as the State is accountable for the proper and appropriate expenditure of Federal funds.

(d)(1) Prior to any redesignation of the agency which administers and operates the State Protection and Advocacy System, the designating official must give written notice of the intention to make the redesignation to the agency currently administering and operating the State Protection and Advocacy System by registered or certified mail. The notice must indicate that the proposed redesignation is being made for good cause. The designating official also must publish a public notice of the proposed action. The agency and the public shall have a reasonable period of time, but not less than 45 days, to respond to the notice.

(2) The public notice must include:

(i) The Federal requirements for the State Protection and Advocacy System for individuals with developmental disabilities (section 143 of the Act); and where applicable, the requirements of other Federal advocacy programs administered by the State Protection and Advocacy System;

(ii) The goals and function of the State's Protection and Advocacy System including the current Statement of Goals and Priorities;

(iii) The name and address of the agency currently designated to administer and operate the State Protection and Advocacy System, and an indication of whether the agency also operates other Federal advocacy programs;

(iv) A description of the current agency operating and administering the Protection and Advocacy System including, as applicable, descriptions of other Federal advocacy programs it operates;

(v) A clear and detailed explanation of the good cause for the proposed redesignation;

(vi) A statement suggesting that interested persons may wish to write the current agency operating and administering the State Protection and Advocacy System at the address provided in paragraph (d)(2)(iii) of this section to obtain a copy of its response to the notice required by paragraph (d)(1) of this section. Copies must be in a format accessible to individuals with disabilities (including plain language), and language assistance services will be provided to individuals with limited English proficiency, such as translated materials or interpretation, upon request;

(vii) The name of the new agency proposed to administer and operate the State Protection and Advocacy System under the Developmental Disabilities Program. This agency will be eligible to administer other Federal advocacy programs;

(viii) A description of the system which the new agency would administer and operate, including a description of all other Federal advocacy programs the agency would operate;

(ix) The timetable for assumption of operations by the new agency and the estimated costs of any transfer and start-up operations; and

(x) A statement of assurance that the proposed new designated State Protection and Advocacy System will continue to serve existing clients and cases of the current P&A system or refer them to other sources of legal advocacy as appropriate, without disruption.

(3) The public notice as required by paragraph (d)(1) of this section, must be in a format accessible to individuals with disabilities, and language assistance services will be provided to individuals with limited English proficiency, such as translated materials or interpretation, upon request to individuals with developmental disabilities or their representatives. The designating official must provide for publication of the notice of the proposed redesignation using the State register, statewide newspapers, public service announcements on radio and television, or any other legally equivalent process. Copies of the notice must be made generally available to individuals with developmental disabilities and mental illness who live in residential facilities through posting or some other means.

(4) After the expiration of the public comment period required in paragraph (d)(1) of this section, the designating official must conduct a public hearing on the redesignation proposal. After consideration of all public and agency comments, the designating official must give notice of the final decision to the currently designated agency and the public through the same means used under paragraph (d)(3) of this section. This notice must include a clear and detailed explanation of the good cause finding. If the notice to the currently designated agency states that the redesignation will take place, it also must inform the agency of its right to appeal this decision to the Secretary, or his or her designee, the authority to hear appeals by the Secretary, or his or her designee, and provide a summary of the public comments received in regard to the notice of intent to redesignate and the results of the public hearing and its responses to those comments. The redesignation shall not be effective until 10 working days after notifying the current agency that administers and operates the State Protection and Advocacy System or, if the agency appeals, until the Secretary, or his or her designee, has considered the appeal.

(e)(1) Following notification as indicated in paragraph (d)(4) of this section, the agency that administers and operates the State Protection and Advocacy System which is the subject of such action, may appeal the redesignation to the Secretary, or his or her designee. To do so, the agency that administers and operates the State Protection and Advocacy System must submit an appeal in writing to the Secretary, or his or her designee, within 20 days of receiving official notification under paragraph (d)(4) of this section, with a separate copy sent by registered of certified mail to the designating official who made the decision concerning redesignation.

(2) In the event that the agency subject to redesignation does exercise its right to appeal under paragraph (e)(1) of this section, the designating official must give public notice of the Secretary's, or his or her designated person's, final decision regarding the appeal through the same means utilized under paragraph (d)(3) of this section within 10 working days of receipt of the Secretary's, or his or her designee's, final decision under paragraph (e)(6) of this section.

(3) The designating official within 10 working days from the receipt of a copy of the appeal must provide written comments to the Secretary, or his or her designee, (with a copy sent by registered or certified mail to the Protection and Advocacy agency appealing under paragraph (e)(1) of this section), or withdraw the redesignation. The comments must include a summary of the public comments received in regard to the notice of intent to redesignate and the results of the public hearing and its responses to those comments.

(4) In the event that the designating official withdraws the redesignation while under appeal pursuant to paragraph (e)(1) of this section, the designating official must notify the Secretary, or his or her designee, and the current agency, and must give public notice of his or her decision through the same means utilized under paragraph (d)(3) of this section.

(5) As part of their submission under paragraph (e)(1) or (3) of this section, either party may request, and the Secretary, or his or her designee, may grant an opportunity for a meeting with the Secretary, or his or her designee, at which representatives of both parties will present their views on the issues in the appeal. The meeting will be held within 20 working days of the submission of written comments by the designating official under paragraph (e)(2) of this section. The Secretary, or his or her designee, will promptly notify the parties of the date and place of the meeting.

(6) Within 30 days of the informal meeting under paragraph (e)(5) of this section, or, if there is no informal meeting under paragraph (e)(5) of this section, within 30 days of the submission under paragraph (e)(3) of this section, the Secretary, or his or her designee, will issue to the parties a final written decision on whether the redesignation was for good cause as defined in paragraph (d)(1) of this section. The Secretary, or his or her designee, will receive comments on the record from agencies administering the Federal advocacy programs that will be directly affected by the proposed redesignation. The P&A and the designating official will have an opportunity to comment on the submissions of the Federal advocacy programs. The Secretary, or his or her designee, shall consider the comments of the Federal programs, the P&A and the designating official in making his final decision on the appeal.

(f)(1) Within 30 days after the redesignation becomes effective under paragraph (d)(4) of this section, the designating official must submit an assurance to the Secretary, or his or her designee, that the newly designated agency that will administer and operate the State Protection and Advocacy System meets the requirements of the statute and the regulations.

(2) In the event that the agency administering and operating the State Protection and Advocacy System subject to redesignation does not exercise its rights to appeal within the period provided under paragraph (e)(1) of this section, the designating official must provide to the Secretary, or his or her designee, documentation that the agency was redesignated for good cause. Such documentation must clearly demonstrate that the Protection and Advocacy agency subject to redesignation was not redesignated for any actions or activities which were carried out under section 143 of the Act, this regulation or any other Federal advocacy program's legislation or regulations.

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