Affiliate Update 2011

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CP of NYS News - 10/5/11 - Vol. 17, Issue 8

10/5/2011 12:25:00 PM

Click here for the PDF file CP NEWS 10-5-11


Volume 17 – Issue # 8


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Affiliate Services Office  Ÿ  90 State Street, Suite 929  Ÿ  Albany, NY 12207 Ÿ 518-436-0178 Ÿ








CP of NYS Annual Conference Time is N ear

Public Employees Federation (PEF) Rejects Proposed Union Contract

Medicare, Medicaid at Risk as “Super Committee” and President Contemplate Cuts

Governor Acts on Key Legislation

Court Invalidates New York Union Neutrality Law for a Second Time

CP of NYS Has New Look at

Conference will Provide Information on Treatment and Care for Adults with Cerebral Palsy

UCP of NYC Artist Wins Statewide Art Contest

Enable, Upstate CP Collaborate on Tech Loan Program

CP of NYS and the MTA Team up to Provide Specialized Travel Training

Grants Available for Rural Health Networks

USTA Grant Helps QCP Introduce People with Disabilities to Tennis





The 51st CP of NYS Annual Conference will be returning to beautiful and historic Saratoga Springs. The 2011 Conference will take place October 24-26 at the Saratoga Hilton Hotel. This year's Conference will again feature nationally known speakers conducting more than 40 workshops and educational sessions.


There will be a display of artwork created by people with disabilities from CP of NYS Affiliates, the CP of NYS Annual Awards Banquet and the Celebrate Staff Dinner. Find out more and register for the event by visiting our website at .


Actress and motivational speaker Geri Jewell will deliver the Keynote Address to open the Annual Conference in the Hilton’s Saratoga Ballroom at 1:30 pm on Monday, October 24. 


Geri Jewell was the first person with a visible disability to become a regular performer on a network prime time television show when she was cast as Cousin Geri on the hit NBC comedy “The Facts of Life.  This spring, she released an autobiography, “I’m Walking As Straight As I Can: Transcending Disability in Hollywood and Beyond.”  Ms. Jewell is internationally recognized as a powerful motivational speaker and trainer.


The Conference will conclude Wednesday, October 26 with a 9:00 am presentation by filmmaker Alexander Freeman. Freeman writes, produces, directs and edits films including dramas and documentaries. He was one of only three people to be selected internationally for the VSA 2010 AFI-Discovery Channel SILVERDOCS Apprenticeship program for his work as co-writer, co-producer, co-director and editor of "I Care: A Documentary About Independent Living." He also received the 2011 Team Hoyt Rising Star Award from Easter Seals. He will show clips of some of his work and discuss his life as a filmmaker and college student with a disability.


The CP of NYS Annual Conference will bring more than 800 people from across the State to Saratoga Springs. For more information on the CP of NYS Annual Conference call (518) 436-0178 or go directly to the conference section of our website at .


Al Shibley


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Members of New York’s second largest state-worker union, the 56,000-member Public Employees Federation (PEF) have rejected a proposed union contract triggering what the Cuomo Administration has said will be more than 3,000 layoffs statewide, with notices going out almost immediately.  The vote was 19,629 against to 16,906 for. 


PEF President Ken Brynien said he would ask the Administration to come back to the bargaining table as soon as possible. He also said that “The decision to reject the tentative agreement was made by our rank-and-file members who clearly feel they are being asked to sacrifice more than others, particularly in light of the pending expiration of the state’s millionaire’s tax.”


Last month, members of the 66,000-member Civil Service Employees Association (CSEA) ratified a nearly identical contract.


Barbara Crosier


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The risk for significant reductions to Medicare and Medicaid increased recently as Congress returned from August recess, the new deficit reduction “Super Committee” met formally for the first time, and the President implored Congress to pass a $447 billion jobs package for which he promises a set of deficit reduction measures, including cuts to Medicare and Medicaid.


Established by the August 2011 debt ceiling deal, the Super Committee is tasked with developing a deficit reduction package of at least $1.2 trillion from 2012 through 2021 by November 23, 2011. If a Super Committee agreement does not pass Congress by December 23, automatic, across-the-board cuts—50% to defense and 50% to non-defense spending, including up to 2% to Medicare providers—will go into effect, starting 2013 through 2021. Medicaid and Social Security would be exempt from the across-the-board cuts.  


Opening statements and the rules of the road were the order of the day at the Super Committee’s first formal meeting on Thursday, September 8, 2011.  Members revisited proposals from previous deficit reduction commissions and efforts, all of which called for cuts to Medicare and Medicaid. 


The President also delivered a speech to a joint session of Congress that day rolling out his $447 billion American Jobs Act (AJA), a package of tax cuts and infrastructure programs and support for teachers and the unemployed. Sixty percent of the package would be tax cuts, 40% spending measures.


The President called on the Super Committee to increase its required savings target to cover the full cost of AJA. While he provided no specific examples, the President emphasized how “modest” reform to Medicare and Medicaid should be pursued. The White House will release specific proposals in the coming days. CP of NYS is concerned about the nature of such “reform” and the potential to harm Medicaid providers and consumers. 


CP of NYS is concerned that reducing Medicare and Medicaid payments as part of a “jobs” package is the precise opposite of what must be done to protect and grow new jobs.  Medicaid services remain one of the few stable employment sectors during this era of high unemployment. Medicaid providers, including services for people with developmental disabilities, hospitals, clinics, home care, etc., generate as much as $150 billion for New York State and local economies each year and support as much as a million jobs through direct employment and ripple-effect job creation and economic activity.  


Barbara Crosier


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Corporate Practice Bill Signed

Governor Cuomo signed S.5524 Flanagan/ A.8282 Glick as Chapter 581 0f the Laws of 2011.  This new statute resolves the conflict that exists between New York's corporate practice laws  by allowing special education pre-schools, school-age and Early Intervention (EI) providers to continue in their existing corporate form, provided that they obtained a waiver under §6503-a.  CP of NYS has advocated strongly with the New York State Education Department (SED), the Legislature and the Administration for this resolution to the EI and SED corporate practice issue. 


SED has not yet released the waiver but we will let you know as soon as it is available and as soon as Affiliates will be able to apply. 


We greatly appreciate that this issue has finally been resolved.  CP of NYS’ letter to the Governor urging his signature can be viewed at .



OMIG Bill Vetoed


As expected, Governor Cuomo has vetoed the OMIG audit reform legislation (S.3184-A Little/A.5686-A Gottfried — relating to procedures, practices, and standards for actions by the Office of Medicaid Inspector General and social services districts). CP of NYS’ letter to the Governor urging his signature and his veto message can be viewed at and . The veto message calls for the creation of a work group of providers to work through the auditing issues and concerns.  Additionally, the Administration claims that under the new Medicaid Inspector General, James Cox, there will be many administrative changes to the audit process.  While it did not become law, the passage of the bill certainly got the attention of the Governor and the OMIG highlighting the many problems that exist with the current auditing process.  We will continue to press for reform to this process to ensure fairness and transparency in OMIG audits.



Additional OPWDD Bills Signed


Additionally, the Governor signed the following three bills, which came out of the Assembly hearing on the New York Times article on the abuse of consumers in state operated OPWDD residences.


1)    Signed as CHAPTER 542 – A.8322 Schroeder — Relates to designating the ombudsman as an employee of the commissioner on quality of care and advocacy for persons with disabilities.

2)    Signed as CHAPTER 558 – S.5795 McDonald — Relates to reporting of serious crimes at mental hygiene facilities within 24 hours.  The bill appears to be limited to State operated programs.

3)    Signed as CHAPTER 588 – S.5793 McDonald — Relates to providing notice of abuse investigations at mental hygiene agencies.  The bill would continue an investigation even in the event that an individual under investigation for abuse resigns.  The bill appears to be limited to State operated programs.


Barbara Crosier


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On September 7, the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of New York ruled that the New York “Union Neutrality” law is pre-empted by federal labor laws and declared that the state is “permanently enjoined from implementing or enforcing that statute.”

The law, Part 211-a of New York’s Labor Law, was enacted in 2002 following years of lobbying by labor groups. The law prohibited employers from using any funds received from the state to encourage or discourage unionization or to pay consultants, attorneys, and others for advice on collective bargaining issues.


CP of NYS, Healthcare Association of New York State (HANYS), NYSARC and two nursing home associations filed suit in federal court challenging the law’s validity. In 2006, the New York District Court ruled that the law was invalid.  On appeal, however, the decision was reversed by the Second Circuit Court of Appeals, which sent the case back to the District Court for further evaluation.


Parallel litigation involving a similar California law moved through the federal courts. In 2008, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down the California law, declaring that it impermissibly attempted to regulate activity that federal labor law shields from any regulation, federal or state.


The new decision by the New York District Court relies heavily on the Supreme Court decision. The Court stated that “§211-a imposes a targeted negative restriction on employer speech about unionization. Because §211-a regulates in a zone protected and reserved for market freedom, it is pre-empted by the National Labor Relations Act.” 


Barbara Crosier


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CP of NYS recently launched a new and improved website at .  


The new site allows us to post articles, news stories and other important documents in various sections of the new site that will keep everyone informed about issues that are important to Affiliates, employees and the people we support and serve. There is a good deal of information about cerebral palsy, our organization and our Affiliates, as well as resources and links for those seeking information.


Our “Find Services” section allows visitors to the site to find Affiliates, and specific services provided by those Affiliates. 


In the “Find Out About CP” section you will find our mission, links to other websites, a list of our Board of Directors, various important publications, as well as news and information about our advocacy efforts.


·         The Advocacy area will contain NYS and Federal Legislative information and information about the New York State Elks.


·         The Publications section will contain copies of the Affiliate Update newsletter, our Annual Report, Perspectives and Educational materials. 


·         The Resources section will contain direct links to web sites for government agencies and other organizations of interest to Affiliate staff, volunteers and consumers and their families.


·         The Annual Conference section will contain information about the upcoming Annual Conference as well as past Conferences. 


And there is much more, so check it out. We hope that you will find the new site user friendly, useful and enjoyable.  Visit frequently for the latest information on topics important to you and the people you support.


Al Shibley


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 “Bridging Care for People with Cerebral Palsy” is a one-day conference designed to provide critical information necessary to help prepare families and practitioners for the growing number of adults with cerebral palsy. The conference, scheduled for Saturday, November 5 at the New York-Presbyterian Morgan Stanley Children’s Hospital in New York City, will present aspects of care management that should be included in specialty care and transition from pediatric to adult care.


This one-day conference is being conducted by the Cerebral Palsy Center of Columbia University Medical Center and presents a unique opportunity for families and clinicians to hear from nationally recognized experts in the cerebral palsy field.  The fees for the Symposium are kept at an affordable price with families in mind.    


Dr. Joseph Dutkowsky is the host of the conference, as well as a speaker. Dr. Dutkowsky is also a member of the Board of Directors of Cerebral Palsy Associations of New York State and will be speaking on October 25 at the CP of NYS Annual Conference in Saratoga Springs.


In addition, Duane Schielke, Executive Vice President of Health Management Projects at CP of NYS, will present at the Conference on “Real World vs. Ideal World, Planning for the Future.”


For more information visit our website (here ) or the Columbia Cerebral Palsy Center website at .  


Please share the brochure with all staff, families and others that you think may be interested.


Deb Williams


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Robin Gray, from Staten Island, has been chosen Artist of the Year by Cerebral Palsy Associations of New York State (CP of NYS).


Gray’s work, entitled “Cranes in the Snow,” was submitted by UCP of NYC and will be featured on a limited edition poster containing all 18 pieces submitted by CP of NYS Affiliates. She will be recognized at the CP of NYS Annual Awards Banquet on Monday, October 24 at the Saratoga Springs City Center.


Lisa Kaye (Queens Centers for Progress) and Erin Anderson (CP of the North Country) were named runners-up in the contest. All 18 original pieces of art will be exhibited at the CP of NYS Annual Conference, Tuesday, October 25 at the Hilton Hotel in Saratoga Springs. 


Al Shibley


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CP of NYS Affiliates Enable and Upstate Cerebral Palsy have collaborated with the NYS Developmental Disabilities Planning Council (DDPC) to create the Children’s Assistive Technology Services (CATS) Project, an Assistive Technology (AT) short-term loan program. Enable established a partnership with Upstate Cerebral Palsy to share resources and meet the needs of the central New York region.


The project has created opportunities for children and their families to try out assistive technology equipment before purchase and to reduce waiting periods for equipment and devices. DDPC funds were used to purchase seating and positioning devices, communication devices, computer hardware and software, mobility devices, sensory and visual equipment, switches, and adaptive toys. The CATS Project provided short-term loans of equipment, developed AT training for families and school personnel, and implemented a train-the-trainer approach for teaching AT assessment and evaluation to staff within partnering school districts.


Start-up funding from the DDPC was provided from 2004 to 2006 and the CATS Project has continued to operate and increase its reach to rural areas. Read more about the program here .


Al Shibley


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Cerebral Palsy Associations of New York State and the MTA New York City Transit System are offering a free Travel Training Program for qualified Access-A-Ride Customers. Through personalized short-term instruction, trainees will learn to travel independently on one round-trip bus or subway route to a destination of their choice in New York City.


Training has begun and nearly 100 Access-A-Ride customers per year could be trained over the next three years.


Through the one-on-one program trainees will master how to:


·         Travel safely

·         Plan a trip using schedules, signs, landmarks and other tools

·         Remember and follow directions

·         Request information from appropriate sources

·         Identify correct stops

·         Cope with service disruptions, delays and emergencies

·         Correctly use mobility aids on accessible mass transportation.


The travel training is funded by MTA New York City Transit and provided by CP of NYS at no cost to trainees.


For more information, or to apply, call (212) 947-5770, ext. 627 or e-mail

[email protected] .


Jacqueline Rumolo


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The federal government is accepting applications through the end of October for the Rural Health Network Development Planning Grant Program , which is available to rural, non-profit, or public entities representing a consortium of three or more health care providers.


Organizations that have already received a Network Planning Grant or a Rural Health Network Development Grant are not eligible to apply for the same or similar projects that have already been funded.


The planning grants are designed to support the development of integrated health care networks to improve efficiency, expand access and improve the quality of essential health care, and strengthen the rural health care system.


A total of $1,150,000 is available nationwide for the program, which is administered by the Health Resources and Services Administration. 


Barbara Crosier


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People with disabilities from the Queens Centers for Progress Day Habilitation Program in Jamaica have been invited to Point Set Indoor Tennis facility in Oceanside to participate in the new United States Tennis Association Quick Start tennis program. The Quick Start program was introduced to the tennis field recently for younger/beginner players. The focus of this program is to teach the fundamentals of tennis through the use of different equipment, smaller tennis courts and a variety of activities. Day Hab individuals are excited about this program and look forward to learning how to play tennis. Point Set generously donated court time and staff, and the Eastern Adult Tennis Foundation (EATF) has supported this program through one of its grants. 


Al Shibley


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