ACCES-VR Communication Support – New Adjunct Service

Henny at Carlucci's office

Henny Kupferstein at Senator Carlucci’s office (top), and the definition of the new adjunct service per ACCES-VR (bottom)

Starting in January 2018, Acces-VR adult vocational rehabilitation department through State Ed will offer a new adjunct service “Coaching and Communication Supports for Post-Secondary Education and Employment” (Case Service Code 792x). Previously considered a soft-skill and widely overlooked as a disability-related need, this initiative was sparked by a proposal written for Kevin Smith, Deputy Commissioner in 2014 by Henny Kupferstein, M.A. & Rebecca Botta-Zalucki, MSW. Eventually, the proposal was drafted as Assembly Bill A05141 and Senate Bill No. S04256. The proposal earned letters of support from ASHA  on behalf of Speech TherapistsNYSACRA and NYSRA, NYSILC and NYAIL for Communication support in Vocational Rehabilitation Communication Support services, and NYSARC, Inc. 

  1. Per the original proposal, only a specialized practitioner who has a Masters level training in social pragmatic language disorders is eligible to apply to deliver the Communication Support service for Acces-VR consumers.
  2. The pay rate is competitive at $80 per unit.
  3. Request for Proposal (RFPs) are due October 18, 2017.
  4. Decisions will be made by January 2018.

Click here to download application

****The good folks at NYSRA are happy to help with your RFP, so please do contact Pat Dowse (, 518-928-2360) directly. Please contact me if you would like to participate in a free support webinar for completing your RFP, scheduled for Tuesday October 3rd and Saturday October 7th.****

Applying to Deliver Communication Support for Acces-VR

Please read the entire document carefully if you are interested in applying to be a provider or ACCES-VR Core Rehabilitation Services.  There are several new services including the Pre-Employment Transition Services for Students.  In addition, we have made adjustments to the definitions of certain services to better meet the needs of our consumers.

It is required that all non-profits must be pre-qualified by the application deadline in order to receive an award.    In addition, all vendors must meet the vendor responsibility requirements necessary for all NYS contracts.

All vendors first need to be a part of the NY Grant Gateway before applying. Visit (“Getting Started”) for how-to videos and online registration. Proposals received from applicants that have not Registered and are not Prequalified in the Grants Gateway on the proposal due date cannot be evaluated. Such proposals will be disqualified from further consideration. Pre Qualification questions should be addressed to

Purpose of Funding

Provision of specific rehabilitation services from community rehabilitation programs and other service providers. These services include assessment, employment preparation, job placement, supported employment, assistive technology, pre-employment transition services, driver rehabilitation services and related adjunct services.

Eligible Applicants

Eligible applicants are not-for-profit organizations, community rehabilitation programs and independent living centers, Boards of Cooperative Educational Services (BOCES), and for-profit organizations who have experience providing vocational services, job placement, supported employment and/or other support services to individuals with disabilities, including youth with disabilities, to enable participants to achieve competitive integrated employment. Please review the Description of Services section of this RFP for organization capacity requirements prior to applying. Organizations which are current ACCES-VR CRS providers and who wish to continue to provide services, must apply to this RFP.

Bidders’ Conference

A Bidders’ Video/Audio Conference will be held on September 13th, 2017 to provide potential applicants with the details of the application process and allow an opportunity for questions and clarification on the RFP process.

Questions & Answers

All questions must be sent by E-Mail to no later than September 15th, 2017. A complete list of all Questions and Answers will be posted to ACCES procurement page no later than September 27th, 2017.

Non-Mandatory Notice of Intent

The Notice of Intent (NOI) is not a requirement for submitting a complete application by the application date; however, NYSED strongly encourages all prospective applicants to submit an NOI to ensure a timely and thorough review and rating process. A non-profit applicant’s NOI will also help to facilitate timely review of their prequalification materials. The notice of intent is a simple email notice stating your organization’s (use the legal name) intent to submit an application for this grant. Please also include your organization’s NYS Vendor ID. The due date is September 29, 2017. Please send the NOI to

New Prequalification Requirement

The State of New York has implemented a statewide prequalification process (described on the Grants Reform website) designed to facilitate prompt contracting for not-for-profit vendors. All not-for-profit vendors are required to pre-qualify by the grant application deadline. This includes all currently funded not-for-profit institutions that have already received an award and are in the middle of the program cycle. The prequalification must be completed by all not-for-profit institutions by the application deadline in order to receive an award under this RFP. Please review the additional information regarding this requirement in the Prequalification for Individual Applications section below.

Date Due

Submit an electronic copy (Word or pdf) of the application by email to (link sends e-mail) by the October 18, 2017 deadline. The subject line of the email should read as follows: RFP #GC18-004 and the legal name of provider organization or individual.

NYSED will deem the vendor to be “non-responsive” if required forms are not submitted. Only vendors that submit the Basic Information Form (Attachment 1) will be eligible for an award. Only vendors that submit the appropriate CRS Service Forms (Attachments 1-A through 1-H) and Capacity Summary (Attachment 2) will be eligible for an award for the service(s) applied for. These Attachments are posted with the RFP in separate files. Please thoroughly review submission instructions in Section 2. Vendor submissions of any of the above forms will not be accepted after the due date of October 18, 2017.

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