The Commissioner may make grants to States and public or nonprofit agencies and organizations to pay all or part of the costs of projects to demonstrate ways to increase client choice in the rehabilitation process, including the selection of providers of vocational rehabilitation services.
Entities that receive grants under paragraph (1) shall maintain such records as the Commissioner may require and comply with any request from the Commissioner for such records.
The Commissioner may conduct an evaluation of the demonstration projects with respect to the services provided, clients served, client outcomes obtained, implementation issues addressed, the cost-effectiveness of the project, and the effects of increased choice on clients and service providers. The Commissioner may reserve funds for the evaluation for a fiscal year from the amounts appropriated to carry out projects under this section for the fiscal year.
The Commissioner, subject to the provisions of section 776 of this title, may provide grants to, or enter into contracts with, eligible entities to pay all or part of the cost of programs that expand and improve the provision of rehabilitation and other services authorized under this chapter or that further the purposes of the chapter, including related research and evaluation activities.
To be eligible to receive a grant, or enter into a contract, under paragraph (1), an entity shall be a State vocational rehabilitation agency, community rehabilitation program, Indian tribe or tribal organization, or other public or nonprofit agency or organization, or as the Commissioner determines appropriate, a for-profit organization. The Commissioner may limit competitions to one or more types of organizations described in this subparagraph.
The Commissioner is authorized to make grants to private nonprofit organizations for the purpose of establishing programs to provide training and information to enable individuals with disabilities, and the parents, family members, guardians, advocates, or other authorized representatives of the individuals to participate more effectively with professionals in meeting the vocational, independent living, and rehabilitation needs of individuals with disabilities. Such grants shall be designed to meet the unique training and information needs of the individuals described in the preceding sentence, who live in the area to be served, particularly those who are members of populations that have been unserved or underserved by programs under this chapter.
Each organization carrying out a program receiving assistance under this subsection shall consult with appropriate agencies that serve or assist individuals with disabilities, and the parents, family members, guardians, advocates, or authorized representatives of the individuals, located in the jurisdiction served by the program.
The Commissioner shall provide coordination and technical assistance by grant or cooperative agreement for establishing, developing, and coordinating the training and information programs. To the extent practicable, such assistance shall be provided by the parent training and information centers established pursuant to section 1471 of title 20.
The board of directors or special governing committee of an organization receiving a grant under this subsection shall meet at least once in each calendar quarter to review the training and information program, and each such committee shall directly advise the governing board regarding the views and recommendations of the committee.
If a nonprofit private organization requests the renewal of a grant under this subsection, the board of directors or the special governing committee shall prepare and submit to the Commissioner a written review of the training and information program conducted by the organization during the preceding fiscal year.
The Commissioner shall make grants to, and enter into contracts with, States and public or nonprofit agencies and organizations, including institutions of higher education, to pay all or part of the cost of training in the use of braille for personnel providing vocational rehabilitation services or educational services to youth and adults who are blind.
For the purpose of carrying out this section there are authorized to be appropriated $5,796,000 for fiscal year 2015, $6,244,000 for fiscal year 2016, $6,373,000 for fiscal year 2017, $6,515,000 for fiscal year 2018, $6,668,000 for fiscal year 2019, and $6,809,000 for fiscal year 2020.