15 CFR 8b.17 - Existing facilities.
(a) Accessibility. A recipient shall operate each program or activity to which this part applies so that when each part is viewed in its entirety it is readily accessible to qualified handicapped individuals. This paragraph does not require a recipient to make each of its existing facilities or every part of a facility accessible to and usable by qualified handicapped individuals. However, if a particular program is available in only one location, that site must be made accessible or the aid, benefit, or service must be made available at an alternative accessible site or sites. Accessibility requires nonpersonal aids to make the aid, benefit, or service accessible to mobility impaired persons.
(b) Methods. A recipient may comply with the requirements of paragraph (a) of this section through such means as redesign of equipment, reassignment of classes or other services to accessible buildings, assignment of aides to beneficiaries, home visits, delivery of services at alternate accessible sites, alteration of existing facilities and construction of new facilities in conformance with the requirement of § 8b.19, or any other method that results in making its program or activity accessible to handicapped individuals. A recipient is not required to make structural changes in existing facilities where other methods are effective in achieving compliance with paragraph (a) of this section. In choosing among available methods for meeting the requirement of paragraph (a) of this section, a recipient shall give priority to those methods that serve handicapped individuals in the most integrated setting appropriate.
(c) If a small recipient finds, after consultation with a qualified handicapped individual seeking its services, that there is no method of complying with paragraph (a) of this section other than making a significant alteration in its existing facilities or facility, the small recipient may, as an alternative, refer the qualified handicapped individual to other providers of those services that are accessible at no additional cost to the handicapped.
(d) Time period. A recipient shall comply with the requirement of paragraph (a) of this section within 60 days of the effective date of this part. Where structural changes in facilities are necessary, such changes shall be made within three years of the effective date of this part, but in any event as expeditiously as possible.
(e) Transition plan. In the event that structural changes to facilities are necessary to meet the requirement of paragraph (a) of this section, a recipient shall develop, within six months of the effective date of this part, a transition plan setting forth the steps necessary to complete such changes. The plan shall be developed with the assistance of interested persons, including handicapped persons or organizations representing handicapped persons. A copy of the transition plan shall be made available for public inspection. The plan shall, at a minimum:
(1) Identify physical obstacles in the recipient's facilities that limit the accessibility of its program or activity to qualified handicapped individuals;
(2) Describe in detail the methods that will be used to make the facilities accessible;
(3) Specify the schedule for taking the steps necessary to achieve full accessibility under § 8b.17(a) and, if the time period of the transition plan is longer than one year, identify the steps that will be taken during each year of the transition period; and
(4) Indicate the person responsible for implementation of the plan.
(f) Notice. The recipient shall adopt and implement procedures to ensure that interested persons, including persons with impaired vision or hearing, can obtain information as to the existence and location of services, activities and facilities that are accessible to and usable by qualified handicapped individuals.