State certification ensures that all providers of ongoing employment support services meet minimum requirements for extended employment program funding.
State certification requirements govern the operation of extended employment providers or rehabilitation facilities engaged in or seeking to engage in an extended employment program.
Any city, town, county, nonprofit corporation, or any combination thereof, may apply to the commissioner for assistance in establishing or operating a community rehabilitation facility.
Apply for Certification
To apply to become an eligible service provider of ongoing employment support services for the state fiscal year beginning July 1, 2016 through June 30, 2017, submit a valid application packet by May 6, 2016. Download the applicable forms and instructions listed below.
For documents in alternate format: If you require an alternative format or prefer to have an application packet mailed to your US postal address, contact Laura Bobick at 651-259-7355 or Laura.Bobick@state.mn.us.
When a rehabilitation facility has been found in compliance with all certification requirements, a single provider certificate, Extended Employment Program Provider Certificate of Operation, will be issued to the provider.
The certificate will specify the type and location of all approved programs. Provider certification will be reviewed and reissued, as appropriate, on a yearly basis.
When there is need for corrective action to achieve full compliance, the commissioner may issue either a provisional or probationary certificate.
The commissioner may issue provisional certification to new providers or to existing providers for expanded programs for a specified period of time, not to exceed 18 months. In order to obtain a provisional certificate, all new or expanded extended employment programs covered by the certificate must be in compliance with all requirements for certification except the requirement for accreditation by CARF.
However, the provider must demonstrate a reasonable likelihood of achieving accreditation within 18 months. If at the end of the 18-month period, the provider has not been approved for accreditation by CARF, provisional certification will be terminated.
The commissioner will place on probationary certification status any provider that has previously been certified where the provider no longer meets all of the certification requirements, is not being operated in compliance with the rule, or is under investigation by a law enforcement agency.
Probationary certification status permits a non-complying provider to continue to receive state funding while the plan for compliance is implemented. To qualify for probationary certification status, the provider must submit a written plan which has been approved by the commissioner and which will bring the program into compliance with the certification requirements or other requirements of the rule within a reasonable time not to exceed 12 months.
Extended employment program means an employment program which provides the ongoing employment support services necessary to maintain and advance the employment of individuals with severe disabilities by providing work in center-based employment, community employment, or supported employment subprograms. Work in extended employment should encompass the broad range of employment choices available to all individuals and promote an individual's self-sufficiency and financial independence.
Center-based employment means employment which provides paid work on the premises of an extended employment provider and training services or other services necessary for employment on or off the premises of an extended employment provider to persons who, because of the nature and severity of their disabilities, need intensive ongoing employment support services funded by the state unit in order to work.
Supported employment means competitive employment in an integrated setting with ongoing support services for individuals with the most severe disabilities for whom competitive employment ha not traditionally occurred or for whom competitive employment has been interrupted or intermittent as a result of a severe disability; and who, because of the nature and severity of their disabilities, need intensive ongoing employment support services from the designated state unit and extended services after transition in order to perform this work; or transitional employment for individuals with the most severe disabilities due to mental illness.
Community employment is paid work in the community requiring intensive ongoing employment support services that does not meet the definition of supported employment only because the worker is paid less than minimum wage or the employment does not meet the criteria of an integrated setting, or the worker is compensated at or above the minimum wage but below the customary wage paid by the employer for the same or similar work performed by individuals without a disability.
Affirmative business enterprise employment means employment which provides paid work on the premises of an affirmative business enterprise as certified by the commissioner. Affirmative business enterprise employment is considered community employment for the purposes of funding under Minnesota Rules, parts 3300.1000 to 3300.2055, provided that the wages for individuals reported must be at or above customary wages for the same employer. The employer must also provide one benefit package that is available to all employees.
Rehabilitation facility. Minnesota Statutes, Chapter 268A.01, Subd. 6. defines a rehabilitation facility as an entity which meets the definition of community rehabilitation program in the federal Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended. However, for the purposes of Extended Employment Programs, rehabilitation facility means an entity which is operated for the primary purpose of providing or facilitating employment for persons with a severe disability.
What is the difference between a rehabilitation facility and an extended employment program provider? An extended employment program provider is a rehabilitation facility that has been certified by DEED to offer center-based employment, community employment and/or supported employment in the current state fiscal year.
Compliance Audit Standards
For the Fiscal Year July 1, 2015 to June 30, 2016
There are standards and rules that must be used by independent auditors conducting compliance examinations of extended employment services provided and reported under contracts with the Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED). See the rules. These standards also apply to organizations that, with the permission of DEED, subcontract with contractors of DEED for extended employment services.
Listing of Reported Participants and Relevant Data
Auditors will be able to generate a file of provider reported data for SFY16 during the period of August 1, 2016 through October 31, 2016. Auditors must obtain a USERNAME and PASSWORD to gain access to the portal where they will be able to generate the file for download into an Excel spreadsheet.
Data is formatted in a three-page Excel spreadsheet that includes contract and invoice information, demographics, and work records. For providers with new/expanded grant awards, auditors will also need to download the file of reported data for SFY16 (July 1, 2015 - June 30, 2016).