5126.081 System of accreditation for county boards of developmental disabilities.

(A) In addition to the rules adopted under division (A)(2) of section 5126.08 of the Revised Code establishing standards for the administration, provision, arrangement, and operation of programs and services by county boards of developmental disabilities, the department of developmental disabilities shall establish a system of accreditation for county boards of developmental disabilities to ensure that the boards are in compliance with federal and state statutes and rules. The department shall adopt rules in accordance with Chapter 119. of the Revised Code governing the system of accreditation. The rules shall include appropriate timelines for compliance when a board is found to be not in compliance and appropriate actions to be taken by boards in complying with the accreditation requirements.

(B) Prior to accrediting a board, the department shall conduct a comprehensive, on-site review of the board. During the review, the department shall document the board's compliance with the department's accreditation requirements. After completing the review, the department shall conduct an exit conference with the president of the board, the superintendent of the board, and any other officials the board asks to have present. The department shall discuss its findings from the review with the board's representatives and provide a written report of its findings not later than thirty days following the exit conference. If the department finds that the board is in compliance with the requirements for accreditation, the department shall issue evidence of accreditation to the board.

Accreditation may be granted for periods of up to five years and may be renewed. Not less than once prior to the date a board's accreditation is scheduled to expire, the department shall conduct a comprehensive, on-site review of the board.

Each board shall conduct an annual audit of itself to evaluate its compliance with the requirements for accreditation. The department may conduct an interim review of any new program or service initiated by a board after its last comprehensive review. The department may conduct other reviews and investigations as necessary to enforce this section.

(C) If the department determines through its review of a board that the board is not in compliance with the requirements for accreditation, the department shall, except as provided in division (F) of this section, grant the board an opportunity to correct the matters in which it is not in compliance. The department shall grant the board an appropriate length of time to comply with the requirements prior to taking any action to deny accreditation to the board. To avoid denial of accreditation, the board superintendent shall prepare a plan of correction to remediate the matters specified in the department's written report as not being in compliance with the requirements for accreditation. The superintendent shall submit the plan to the board for review, and the board shall review the plan. If the board believes that the plan is sufficient to correct the matters, the board shall approve the plan by resolution and submit the plan to the department for its review. The department shall review the plan of correction. If the department approves the plan, the board shall commence action to implement the plan. The department shall, as necessary, conduct follow-up reviews of the board to determine whether it has met the requirements for accreditation. If the plan of correction submitted by a board is disapproved, the department shall inform the board of the reasons for disapproval and may grant the board an opportunity to submit a revised plan of correction.

A board may request technical assistance from the department, other boards, or professional organizations in preparing plans of correction and in implementing plans of correction.

(D) If, after being given the opportunity to implement a plan of correction, a board continues to fail to meet the requirements for accreditation, the department shall issue an order denying accreditation to the board. The department may deny accreditation to the board for all or part of the programs or services offered by the board.

The department shall simultaneously notify all of the following officials in the county: the members of the board of county commissioners, the senior probate judge, the county auditor, and the president and superintendent of the county board of developmental disabilities. The notice shall identify the programs and services that have been denied accreditation, the requirements for accreditation with which the board is not in compliance, and the responsibilities of the county officials to contract under division (E)(1) of this section to have the board's programs and services administered by another party or become subject to administrative receivership under division (E)(2) of this section.

(E)

(1) When a board is denied accreditation, the department shall first give the board the option of contracting to have the board's programs and services that were denied accreditation administered by an accredited county board of developmental disabilities or another qualified entity subject to the approval of the department. The board may contract with more than one board that has been accredited. When a board enters into a contract, the board shall, by resolution, give the contractor full administrative authority over the programs and services that the contractor will administer.

(2) If a board fails to exercise its option of entering into a contract under division (E)(1) of this section sooner than thirty days after the department denies accreditation, the department shall appoint an administrative receiver of the board's programs and services that were denied accreditation. The department may appoint employees of the department, management personnel from county boards of developmental disabilities, or individuals from other entities as necessary to meet its needs for appointing an administrative receiver, except that individuals from other entities may be appointed only when qualified department employees or board management personnel are unavailable. The department may not appoint an individual who is employed by or affiliated with an entity that is under contract with the board. The administrative receiver shall assume full administrative responsibility for the board's programs and services that were denied accreditation.

(3) The board or entity that contracts with a board under division (E)(1) of this section, or the administrative receiver appointed under division (E)(2) of this section, shall develop and implement a plan of correction to remediate the matters that caused the department to deny accreditation. The contractor or administrative receiver shall submit the plan to the department, and the department shall review the plan. If the plan is approved by the department, the contractor or administrative receiver shall commence action to implement the plan. The contractor or administrative receiver shall report to the department any findings it can make pertaining to issues or circumstances that are beyond the control of the board and result in the unlikelihood that compliance with the requirements for accreditation can be achieved unless the issues or circumstances are remediated.

(4) For purposes of divisions (E)(1) and (2) of this section, the department shall require the board that has been denied accreditation to transfer control of state and federal funds it is eligible to receive for the board's programs and services that have been denied accreditation in an amount necessary for the contractor or administrative receiver to fulfill its duties in administering the programs and services for the board. The transfer of control of funds does not cause any programs and services of the board that are accredited to lose their accreditation. If the board refuses to transfer control of funds, the department may withhold state and federal funds from the board in an amount necessary for the contractor or administrative receiver to fulfill its duties. The amount transferred or withheld from a board shall include reimbursements for the personnel of the contractor or administrative receiver, including amounts for time worked, travel, and related expenses.

A contractor or administrative receiver that has assumed the administration of a board's programs and services has the right to authorize the payment of bills in the same manner that a board may authorize payment of bills under this chapter and section 319.16 of the Revised Code.

(F) When the department's review of a board reveals serious health and safety issues within the programs and services offered by the board, the department shall order the board to correct the violations immediately or appoint an administrative receiver.

(G) At any time a board can demonstrate that it is capable of assuming its duties in compliance with the department's requirements for accreditation, the department shall reverse its order denying accreditation and issue evidence of accreditation to the board.

A board may appeal the department's denial of accreditation or refusal to reverse a denial of accreditation only by filing a complaint under section 5123.043 of the Revised Code. If in its appeal the board can demonstrate that it is capable of assuming its duties in compliance with the department's requirements for accreditation, the department shall reverse its order denying accreditation and shall issue evidence of accreditation to the board.

(H) All notices issued to a board by the department under this section shall be delivered to the board's president and superintendent.

(I) A board's president may designate another member of the board as the individual to be responsible for fulfilling all or part of the president's responsibilities established under this section.

Amended by 128th General Assemblych.28, SB 79, §1, eff. 10/6/2009.

Effective Date: 09-22-2000; 2005 SB10 09-05-2005