Welcome to my first attempt to set up a blog of sorts on the Balance of State website. I don’t know if I believe that this is a “blog” per se, but we thought this might be a better way to share the information with everyone and continue to have it archived and accessible. So, each week I will post important information, upcoming trainings, deadlines, as well as upload attachments. If you have any suggestions or items you wish to include, please let me know by Thursday of each week. We really want this to be a helpful tool in maintaining communication with everyone.
*NOTE: Many attachments listed in this blog can be found at: http://www.wiboscoc.org/weekly-update-attachments.html.
(1) February Quarterly meeting
The meeting will be on February 11-12, 2016 at the Holiday Inn Hotel & Convention Center in Stevens Point. The cost will be $70/person for one day ($80 for non-members) and $125/person for two days ($135 for non-members). We have extended the registration deadline to Tuesday, February 2nd. The agenda can be found at http://www.wiboscoc.org/quarterly-meetings.html.
Remember, there will be roundtables on important topics as well as an opportunity to discuss with other folks doing the same or similar type of programs . . . “how do you do what you do?” If there are any questions, issues, or other ideas you have, please feel free to email those to email@example.com.
Congratulations on another successful January Point-in-Time count. Each time I have helped with the street or known location count, I always walk away feeling a little bit more connected to the community I was in. Something about walking in parks, streets, and under bridges at 3:00 in the morning helps put things in perspective. Please remember to come to the quarterly meeting with stories and experiences to share!
The January HIC and the Post-PIT count survey will be sent out early next week.
If you have any media from your PIT, including newspaper, radio, or TV, please send the link to firstname.lastname@example.org. We want to be able to post it to the Facebook page and please visit the new “NEWS” section of the website: http://www.wiboscoc.org/news.html
The PIT Training #3 is scheduled for Thu, Feb 25, 2016 9:00 AM - 10:30AM
This is a required training for PIT leads in the Balance of State COC. The training will cover the reporting requirements related to the HIC, Non-WISP, WISP data, and deduplication. Finally, there will be a Q & A component of the training. Please bring questions!
Completion of July Housing Inventory Chart (HIC): February 15, 2016 at 5:00 pm
Completion of Non-WISP PIT form: February 15, 2016 at 5:00 pm
Completion of Deduplication Chart: February 15, 2016 at 5:00 pm
Completion of Post-PIT Survey: February 29, 2016 at 5:00 pm
(3) Balance of State Board of Directors – Special Populations
There was an oversight made at the November Balance of State annual meeting. Each of the Board positions that represent special populations should have been up for election. To rectify the situation, each of the special populations currently not represented by an elected Board Member will be open for election. The directors currently on the Board to continue to serve through this process. Attached to this post there is a Board of Director application.
The special populations up for election are:
If you or you would like to nominate someone to represent one or more of the above special populations, please complete the application* by Friday, March 11th and email it to email@example.com. The Board will review the applications and select directors for each position by March 22nd. Each of the Board members will be seated at the May quarterly meeting.
Note, each position serves for two years. Anyone in the Balance of State can be nominated, regardless of funding.
(4) Coordinated Entry
Corin is working on the Coordinated Entry 101 training that should be available soon. With the time crunch, it will be a recorded webinar and slides that will be posted on the BOS website. The training will include the basic overview of what is Coordinated Entry, how does it work in real life, and general information about referrals & prioritization. If there are items you would like to make sure are covered in this training, please send them to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
A revised pre-screen form has been completed and approved by the Board of Directors. It will be posted on the website at: http://www.wiboscoc.org/coordinated-entry.html. Please start using this form ASAP.
Please submit any and all questions regarding the Coordinated Entry process for the Balance of State that is NOT related to HMIS to email@example.com. We are working on a Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) section for the website as well.
Finally, the Board of Directors has approved the format of the Prioritization list for Non-HMIS users. This will done by early next week. The document will be in google drive and a separate link will be sent to each of the Designated Lead Agencies (DLA) of record. Please note, the format will match the prioritization list that is run out of HMIS. Standardization of the process is what makes coordinated entry possible.
In February, I have 3 additional trainings:
(5) Balance of State Committee Updates –
Standards & Prioritization Committee:
While it is hard to believe it has been a year, the ESG Rapid Re-housing standards* are up for review. Please send all comments, suggested changes, etc. to firstname.lastname@example.org no later than Friday, February 26th.
In addition, the COC Rapid Re-housing standards* have been completed and the committee is now seeking comments. Please send all comments, suggested changes, etc. to email@example.com no later than Friday, February 26th.
**It is important that you identify which standards you are commenting on (ESG or COC).
Note: The Board of Directors approved a revision to the ESG Rapid Re-housing prioritization policy in order to align the process with Coordinated Entry. The section of the policy pertaining to prioritization has been updated to now require the VI-SPDAT or F-VI-SPDAT. These revised standards are posted on the website and are now in effect.
(6) Are you having trouble identifying who is a Veteran?
If you are struggling to determine who is a veteran and who is not, or you wish to confirm veteran status, please use the following SQUARES tool. It can be found at:
SQUARES stands for Veteran Status Query and Response Exchange System. The purpose is to authorize users to identify clients who have served in the US military through a real time inquiry using personal identifying information (PII) to the VA Department of Defense Identify Repository (VADIR). The Repository is a secure web-based application and allows HMIS users to search VA records by name, Social Security number, and date of birth to check veteran status for program participants.
If you have not already signed up to use this free tool, please do so!
(7) Substantial Amendment 1 to the State of Wisconsin’s 2015-2019 Consolidated Plan
The Division of Energy, Housing, and Community Resources (DEHCR/Division) posted a draft Substantial Amendment 1 to the State’s 2015-2019 Consolidated Plan. The Public Comment Period is now open through February 22, 2016. The Consolidated Plan defines how the State will distribute federal grant funds to local governments, public and private organizations, and businesses. More than 90% of these funds are U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) formula grants for:
The State may only grant CDBG funds to non-entitlement counties, cities, towns, and villages. The amendment proposes an new category of CDBG grants- Rural Economic and Area Development Initiative (READI). A draft grant application is linked to the consolidated plan or can be found here
http://doa.wi.gov/Documents/DOH/CDBG/READI/READI_Application_For_Substantial_Amendment.pdf. The State of Wisconsin will take comments for 30 days and prepare a final submission to HUD. HUD must approve the proposed change before the final application notice can be posted.
The source of the format of the document is from HUD’s IDIS database. When information is exported from HUD’s IDIS database into a MS Word document, some of the data covers five years and some of the data covers one year. We have attempted to make HUD’s information as readable as possible in this document, while maintaining HUD’s plan requirements.
Public comments on the DRAFT Substantial Amendment 1 may be emailed to the Division of Energy, Housing, and Community Resources at DOADEHCR@wisconsin.gov, or, mailed to: Department of Administration, Division of Energy, Housing, and Community Resources,
P.O. Box 7970, Madison, WI 53707-7970. Comments received during the comment period will be considered as the Division prepares the final Substantial Amendment 1 document for submission. A summary of the comments, both those accepted and those rejected, will be attached to the final document prior to submission to HUD for approval.
(8) Membership Update 2016
COC leads have received the link to the BOS Membership 2016 list. At minimum, everyone that receives the following funding should be included: COC, ETH, TBRA, PATH, VA, RHY, SSVF, SSSG, HOPWA, VASH, and DOJ are included. In addition, everyone that is going to participate in the coordinated entry process for the continua must be included. Overall, the list should also reflect the current membership of your local continua. The deadline is Monday, February 15th. Please make changes directly on the google drive document.
(9) Trainings and Request for Information
If you wish you had more information or more training on any particular policy, project, topic, etc – please let me know by sending an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
(10) HUD, USICH, NAEH Trainings
Save the Date: HHS and HUD National Joint Listening Session on the Intersection of Human Trafficking and Housing and Services for Survivors - February 24, 2016 - 3 PM EST
The three main questions HHS and HUD will be discussing are:
Thank you for reading this update. Check back next week for more important updates, trainings, and information!
I am the COC Coordinator for the Wisconsin Balance of State Continuum of Care. My email is: email@example.com.