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 DHS News March 2014     


Staff Members Respond to Call for Concepts 

Department of Human Services staff members submitted 40 ideas to administrators in the second Call for Concepts for utilization of the Human Services Block Grant (HSBG) in 2014-15 and beyond. The block grant “represents a significant opportunity to bring innovation and better outcomes to our human service system,” said Shannon Fairchild, Planning Manager in the Office of Data Analysis, Research and Evaluation (DARE).

FY 2014-15 will mark the third year that DHS has participated in the block grant.  Counties participating in the block grant pilot receive their funds for seven line items in categorical payments from the Department of Public Welfare (DPW) based on their current allocation formulas, but will have the ability to use the funding in a flexible manner, prioritizing funds where each locality needs them the most.

Last year, DHS sought concepts from its providers. Concepts submitted this year are now being reviewed blindly by an internal review team and scored. Afterward, members of the Human Services Block Grant Advisory Board will review and weigh in on the ideas moved forward, and then senior staff will make final selections.

DHS held a breakfast on Feb. 19 in the Human Services Building on Smithfield Street to thank staffers who submitted ideas. “By encouraging staff members to develop concepts, DHS will promote creative solutions and more effectively serve our consumers,” Shannon said. “It was clear that proposers were excited by the process and developed thoughtful submissions.”


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