To be eligible to receive funds under this subchapter for a fiscal year, a State shall submit, and have approved by the Secretary and the Secretary of Labor, a unified State plan in accordance with section 102, or a combined State plan in accordance with section 103, of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act [29 U.S.C. 3112, 3113]. The unified or combined State plan shall include, in the portion of the plan described in section 102(b)(2)(D) of such Act [29 U.S.C. 3112(b)(2)(D)] (referred to in this subsection as the “vocational rehabilitation services portion”), the provisions of a State plan for vocational rehabilitation services, described in this subsection.
The State shall not be required to submit, as part of the vocational rehabilitation services portion of the unified or combined State plan submitted in accordance with subparagraph (A), policies, procedures, or descriptions required under this subchapter that have been previously submitted to the Commissioner and that demonstrate that such State meets the requirements of this subchapter, including any policies, procedures, or descriptions submitted under this subchapter as in effect on the day before the effective date of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act.
The vocational rehabilitation services portion of the unified or combined State plan submitted in accordance with subparagraph (A) shall remain in effect until the State submits and receives approval of a new State plan in accordance with subparagraph (A), or until the submission of such modifications as the State determines to be necessary or as the Commissioner may require based on a change in State policy, a change in Federal law (including regulations), an interpretation of this chapter by a Federal court or the highest court of the State, or a finding by the Commissioner of State noncompliance with the requirements of this chapter.
If the State has designated only 1 State agency pursuant to subparagraph (A), the State may assign responsibility for the part of the plan under which vocational rehabilitation services are provided for individuals who are blind to an organizational unit of the designated State agency and assign responsibility for the rest of the plan to another organizational unit of the designated State agency, with the provisions of subparagraph (B) applying separately to each of the designated State units.
The State plan shall provide for such methods of administration as are found by the Commissioner to be necessary for the proper and efficient administration of the plan.
The State plan shall provide that the designated State agency, and entities carrying out community rehabilitation programs in the State, who are in receipt of assistance under this subchapter shall take affirmative action to employ and advance in employment qualified individuals with disabilities covered under, and on the same terms and conditions as set forth in, section 793 of this title.
The State plan shall provide that facilities used in connection with the delivery of services assisted under the State plan shall comply with the Act entitled “An Act to insure that certain buildings financed with Federal funds are so designed and constructed as to be accessible to the physically handicapped”, approved on August 12, 1968 (commonly known as the “Architectural Barriers Act of 1968”) [42 U.S.C. 4151 et seq.], with section 794 of this title, and with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 [42 U.S.C. 12101 et seq.].
An identification of, or a description of a method for defining, the financial responsibility of such public entity for providing such services, and a provision stating the financial responsibility of such public entity for providing such services.
Information specifying the conditions, terms, and procedures under which a designated State unit shall be reimbursed by other public entities for providing such services, based on the provisions of such agreement or mechanism.
Information specifying procedures for resolving interagency disputes under the agreement or other mechanism (including procedures under which the designated State unit may initiate proceedings to secure reimbursement from other public entities or otherwise implement the provisions of the agreement or mechanism).
Information specifying policies and procedures for public entities to determine and identify the interagency coordination responsibilities of each public entity to promote the coordination and timely delivery of vocational rehabilitation services (except those services specified in paragraph (5)(E) and in paragraphs (1) through (4) and (14) of section 723(a) of this title), and accommodations or auxiliary aids and services.
Notwithstanding subparagraph (B), if any public entity other than a designated State unit is obligated under Federal or State law, or assigned responsibility under State policy or under this paragraph, to provide or pay for any services that are also considered to be vocational rehabilitation services (other than those specified in paragraph (5)(E) and in paragraphs (1) through (4) and (14) of section 723(a) of this title), such public entity shall fulfill that obligation or responsibility, either directly or by contract or other arrangement.
If a public entity other than the designated State unit fails to provide or pay for the services described in clause (i) for an eligible individual, the designated State unit shall provide or pay for such services to the individual. Such designated State unit may claim reimbursement for the services from the public entity that failed to provide or pay for such services. Such public entity shall reimburse the designated State unit pursuant to the terms of the interagency agreement or other mechanism described in this paragraph according to the procedures established in such agreement or mechanism pursuant to subparagraph (B)(ii).
The State plan shall include an assurance that an individualized plan for employment meeting the requirements of section 722(b) of this title will be developed and implemented in a timely manner for an individual subsequent to the determination of the eligibility of the individual for services under this subchapter, except that in a State operating under an order of selection described in paragraph (5), the plan will be developed and implemented only for individuals meeting the order of selection criteria of the State.
The State plan shall include an assurance that such services will be provided in accordance with the provisions of the individualized plan for employment.
In specifying the information to be submitted in the reports, the Commissioner shall require annual reporting of information, on eligible individuals receiving the services, that is necessary to assess the State’s performance on the standards and indicators described in section 726(a) of this title that are determined by the Secretary to be relevant in assessing the performance of designated State units in carrying out the vocational rehabilitation program established under this subchapter.
The State plan shall include an assurance that the information submitted in the reports will include a complete count, except as provided in subparagraph (E), of the applicants and eligible individuals, in a manner permitting the greatest possible cross-classification of data and that the identity of each individual for which information is supplied under this paragraph will be kept confidential.
The disaggregation of data under this chapter shall not be required within a category if the number of individuals in a category is insufficient to yield statistically reliable information, or if the results would reveal personally identifiable information about an individual.
The State plan shall specify that the Commissioner will provide an annual comprehensive report that includes the reports and data required under this section, as well as a summary of the reports and data, for each fiscal year. The Commissioner shall submit the report to the Committee on Education and the Workforce of the House of Representatives, the Committee on Appropriations of the House of Representatives, the Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions of the Senate, and the Committee on Appropriations of the Senate, not later than 90 days after the end of the fiscal year involved.
The State plan shall include descriptions of interagency cooperation with, and utilization of the services and facilities of, Federal, State, and local agencies and programs, including the State programs carried out under section 3003 of this title, programs carried out by the Under Secretary for Rural Development of the Department of Agriculture, noneducational agencies serving out-of-school youth, and State use contracting programs, to the extent that such Federal, State, and local agencies and programs are not carrying out activities through the statewide workforce development system.
The State plan shall include an assurance that the designated State unit, the Statewide Independent Living Council established under section 796d of this title, and the independent living centers described in subpart 3 of part A of subchapter VII within the State have developed working relationships and coordinate their activities, as appropriate.
The State plan shall include an assurance that the designated State unit has entered into a formal cooperative agreement with the State agency responsible for administering the State Medicaid plan under title XIX of the Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. 1396 et seq.) and the State agency with primary responsibility for providing services and supports for individuals with intellectual disabilities and individuals with developmental disabilities, with respect to the delivery of vocational rehabilitation services, including extended services, for individuals with the most significant disabilities who have been determined to be eligible for home and community-based services under a Medicaid waiver, Medicaid State plan amendment, or other authority related to a State Medicaid program.
The State plan shall include an assurance that the designated State unit, and the lead agency and implementing entity (if any) designated by the Governor of the State under section 3003 of this title, have developed working relationships and will enter into agreements for the coordination of their activities, including the referral of individuals with disabilities to programs and activities described in that section.
The State plan shall include an assurance that the designated State unit will coordinate activities with any other State agency that is functioning as an employment network under the Ticket to Work and Self-Sufficiency Program established under section 1148 of the Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. 1320b–19).
The State plan shall describe how the designated State agency or agencies (if more than 1 agency is designated under paragraph (2)(A)) will collaborate with the State agency responsible for administering the State Medicaid plan under title XIX of the Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. 1396 et seq.), the State agency responsible for providing services for individuals with developmental disabilities, and the State agency responsible for providing mental health services, to develop opportunities for community-based employment in integrated settings, to the greatest extent practicable.
The State plan shall include an assurance that, except as otherwise provided in part C, the designated State agency will provide vocational rehabilitation services to American Indians who are individuals with disabilities residing in the State to the same extent as the designated State agency provides such services to other significant populations of individuals with disabilities residing in the State.
The State plan shall identify the goals and priorities of the State in carrying out the program. The goals and priorities shall be jointly developed, agreed to, and reviewed annually by the designated State unit and the State Rehabilitation Council, if the State has such a Council. Any revisions to the goals and priorities shall be jointly agreed to by the designated State unit and the State Rehabilitation Council, if the State has such a Council. The State plan shall provide that the State shall submit to the Commissioner a report containing information regarding revisions in the goals and priorities, for any year in which the State revises the goals and priorities.
The State plan shall include an assurance that applicants and eligible individuals or, as appropriate, the applicants’ representatives or individuals’ representatives, will be provided information and support services to assist the applicants and individuals in exercising informed choice throughout the rehabilitation process, consistent with the provisions of section 722(d) of this title.
The State plan shall include an assurance that the designated State agency will implement an information and referral system adequate to ensure that individuals with disabilities will be provided accurate vocational rehabilitation information and guidance, using appropriate modes of communication, to assist such individuals in preparing for, securing, retaining, or regaining employment, and will be appropriately referred to Federal and State programs (other than the vocational rehabilitation program carried out under this subchapter), including other components of the statewide workforce development system in the State.
In the case of a State that, under subsection (a)(2), designates a State agency to administer the part of the State plan under which vocational rehabilitation services are provided for individuals who are blind (or to supervise the administration of such part by a local agency) and designates a separate State agency to administer the rest of the State plan, the State shall either establish a State Rehabilitation Council for each of the two agencies that does not meet the requirements in subparagraph (A)(i), or establish one State Rehabilitation Council for both agencies if neither agency meets the requirements of subparagraph (A)(i).
The plan shall include an assurance that the State will submit to the Commissioner reports containing annual updates of the information required under paragraph (7) (relating to a comprehensive system of personnel development) and any other updates of the information required under this section that are requested by the Commissioner, and annual reports as provided in paragraphs (15) (relating to assessments, estimates, goals and priorities, and reports of progress) and (18) (relating to innovation and expansion), at such time and in such manner as the Secretary may determine to be appropriate.
The State plan shall provide that the designated State agency has the authority to enter into contracts with for-profit organizations for the purpose of providing, as vocational rehabilitation services, on-the-job training and related programs for individuals with disabilities under part A of subchapter VI, upon a determination by such agency that such for-profit organizations are better qualified to provide such rehabilitation services than nonprofit agencies and organizations.
The State plan shall provide an assurance describing how the State will utilize initiatives involving in-demand industry sectors or occupations under sections 106(c) and 108 of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act [29 U.S.C. 3121(c), 3123] to increase competitive integrated employment opportunities for individuals with disabilities.
Nothing in this part shall be construed to reduce the obligation under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (20 U.S.C. 1400 et seq.) of a local educational agency or any other agency to provide or pay for any transition services that are also considered special education or related services and that are necessary for ensuring a free appropriate public education to children with disabilities within the State involved.