Bidders Conference Q & A 4-9-15

 Workforce Investment Act (WIA) / Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) Title 1‐B Youth Services Request for Proposal (RFP) Pre‐Bid Conference Minutes April 9, 2015 PRESENT: JoAnn Toerper, Boonslick Regional Planning Commission Sheree Prebe, Gamm, Inc. NEMO Workforce Investment Board Staff: Brandi Glover Sharon Hillard The Workforce Investment Act (WIA) / Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) Title 1‐B Youth Services Request for Proposal (RFP) Pre‐Bid Conference meeting was held April 9, 2015 at the Northeast Missouri (NEMO) Workforce Investment Board (WIB) office in Paris, Missouri. The meeting began at approximately 10:00 a.m. NEMO WIB Executive Director Brandi Glover called the meeting to order. She welcomed those who were present and thanked them for attending. Brandi asked the bidders if they would like a general overview of the Request for Proposal, if they would like her to explain the differences in the RFP since the programs were last procured, or if they would just like her to answer questions. It was decided that she would point out the differences in the RFP since the programs were last procured and answer any questions the proposers may have. Brandi said the RFP was pretty much the way it had been under the Workforce Investment Act (WIA) because when it was released very little information had been released about the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA). However, she included information about WIOA so that provisions would be in place for the transition from WIA to WIOA. Reference to both acts was included in the RFP with the expectation that bidders would agree to provide services in accordance to the provisions in both WIA and WIOA and any future laws, rules and regulations set forth that supersede current rules and regulations. She said the State would like us to implement all of the requirements under the WIOA that we can especially with the Youth Program starting July 1, 2015. However, there would still be a transition period going from WIA to WIOA. She said issues with carryovers and who would be considered WIA and WIOA and the ToolBox system would still need to be determined. Performance measures had been decided but performance numbers had not been negotiated and how everything was going to be captured was still to be determined. The main changes for the Youth Program under the WIOA were the 75% expenditure rate for Out‐of‐School Youth (OSY) and the 20% Work Experience expenditure rate requirement. There was no cost per involved and she had heard that some areas were going to do most of their work experience with the OSY so they could make sure that they hit the 75% and the 20% under OSY. Subcontractors could do this however they chose. The 75% requirement for OSY is effective July 1, 2015. The allocations in the proposal are based on last year’s allocations. She said bidders could apply in one or both categories. They could apply for In‐School Youth (IS) or Out‐
of‐School Youth (OSY) and could apply for one or all or part of the career centers. The maximum of 57% of program funds may be budgeted for operational costs. Contracts issued from the RFP may also include additional funds to serve youth such as special grants and projects (SPYC, Summer Jobs Program) as funds are available and appropriate. Questions from today’s Q & A and any other after this would be posted online with the RFP. If proposers had additional questions after today’s Q & A they should be submitted in writing by email, fax or mail to Brandi Glover, Executive Director of the NEMO WIB. Questions would not be accepted after April 29, 2015 at 10:00 a.m. Bidders were encouraged to carefully read the WIA Scopes of Work and the General Contractual Requirements prior to the submission of a proposal. Bidders are cautioned not to contact the WIB members, Chief Local Elected Officials, Youth Council Members or other WIB employees concerning the procurement during the competitive procurement and evaluation processes as it could disqualify their application. Brandi reviewed the timelines as stated in the proposal. Last day to submit questions is April 29, 2015. Proposals are due May 1, 2015 at 10:00 a.m. The review and evaluation period for the Youth Council will be May 4‐12. The Youth Council will meet on May 13 where they will vote on their recommendation to submit to the NEMO Workforce Investment Board. The Board will vote on their recommendation on May 18 and awards will be announced on May 19. The contract period begins July 1, 2015. Brandi said the eligibility criteria for WIOA from the law excluding some of the references to the other acts and laws was included in the proposal. She reviewed some of the changes including the criteria for age which is 14‐24. She said under WIOA ISY eligibility was basically the same. She noted that the barrier of “Requires additional assistance” would be more specifically defined. The new required elements 11‐
14 were included in the RFP. Brandi said Page 14 of the RFP explained how the Northeast Region was divided into the Career Center regions and which counties identified with each career center. She said the minimum acceptable bid would be for one full Career Center region. Bidders could apply for multiple Career Center regions. Bidders wouldn’t be considered if they applied for one specific geographical area or political unit less than one county. Bidders must provide assurances that all programs and services would be provided in accordance with the Scopes of Work that were attached to the RFP. She said the assurances were the same as they had been in recent contracts of the WIB. They have changed since the last Youth RFP but not from recent contracts. Brandi said the issuances were all current other than the one new issuance released yesterday regarding the Health and Human Service Poverty Guidelines, and nothing had changed with the proposal summary sheet. There were changes to the Glossary to update the ages and what qualifies. Brandi said she had changed the budget form. If bidders had indirect cost rates they needed to show that on their budget. She had included the date of expiration but she had since learned from DOL that they only expire if you apply for something different. Bidders only need to provide numbers for who they plan to serve, carryover and cost per. Numbers for activities would be negotiated later and is not required. We did reallocate the funds to match with the career centers. She said small changes were made to the Scopes of Work to update the wording. Questions that were asked and answers provided at the meeting are as follows: 1. Are the E‐Verify documents required? a. No, however, before a contract would be issued with a subcontractor, E‐Verify would be required. 2. Do we need a Board signature or who needs to sign the proposal? a. No, the Executive Director’s signature is sufficient in all places where a signature is required. 3. Is the work experience requirement 20% for ISY and 20% for OSY or just 20% for both? b. The 20 percent minimum expenditure requirement applies to overall local area youth funds with the exception of administrative costs. There is a 10 percent cap on administrative costs. As an example, if a local area were to get $1 million and they spend their 10 percent ($100,000) on administrative costs that would leave $900,000 to spend on services to young people. That $900,000 is what the work experience expenditure requirement of 20% would be based on for that area. In that example, the local area must spend at least $180,000 on work experiences. The work experience expenditure is 4.
applied to overall local area funds minus administrative cost and is not applied separately for in‐school and out‐of‐school youth. You don’t have to spend 20 percent on work experience for in‐school and 20 percent on out‐of‐school youth. So if I want to do 20% for ISY and 20% for OSY I can? c. Yes; you are not limited to 20% but you have to spend at least 20% for work experience. That 20% does include summer employment opportunities and you may have more OJTs under WIOA since the age limit for youth increases to age 24. Are we going to get a budget breakdown based for sub‐region? d. The budget breakdown is included in the attachments of the RFP information. To make the Youth program more in line with NGCC we relined the area to be more in line with the Career Centers. This information can be found on page 14 of the RFP. Will some of the MOUs become regional or do you expect the bidders to do the MOUs individually as subcontractors? e. If you are going to partner with somebody to provide a specific service then you would need that MOU. Otherwise, as far as just partnering and saying that you are going to refer and work together, that would be covered under the WIB’s MOU. This is to provide you an option to have a subcontractor that would provide a specific service or function for you and then you would need a MOU stating how you would work together. With the Summer Jobs Program if we decided to partner with one of the Community Colleges to help with Job Readiness, would we need to write a MOU or would the WIB? f. If we are looking at something region wide, then the WIB would probably do the MOU. If it was going to be specific to a subcontractor then the subcontractor would probably do the MOU. Aren’t the barriers going to be the same? a. I think the barriers will helps us with the OSY because they may not need to be low income. The first three requirements are the same. Then under (a), if the OSY meet either of the first two bullets, they qualified without looking at income. Under the third bullet, they must be low income and have one of the barriers listed below. There was concern about the Missouri Options kids because they dropout of school and start the Options in the fall. It was asked if they were going to have to be classified as ISY. a. Brandi felt they should be classified as OSY but they were still trying to get clarification at the state. If not, then we would have to catch them at that perfect time to enroll them so that they would be an OSY. She said they did clarify for AEL kids that until they meet 12 hours of classroom time they are not considered enrolled in AEL. So they can be enrolled during orientation or before they meet that 12 hour deadline. She had been told that as long as we have documentation from the AEL instructor that says this participant is planning to enroll but has not completed 12 hours so they are not considered an AEL student then that is all we need to show they are OSY. A question was asked about what to do in situations where the high schools were placing the kids in what they call home bound so they don’t have to take a hit for them dropping out. a. Brandi said that was real tricky because you have to get clarification and the school may not be willing to provide that information that they are dropout and we have to have another way of going around that. Part of the clarification we need is what other documentation can we use if the school doesn’t want to give us the documentation we need. It was said that that was the concern about MO Options because when the schools put the youth in the Options program they never drop them. Brandi said the subcontractors would have the option where the youth would state that they were a high school dropout. 11. Is there a limit on the number of pages of the proposal? a. No. 12. There was a question on Page 25 regarding the age requirement for the “Pregnant/Parenting Youth”. a. There was a typo on term “Pregnant/Parenting Youth”. It should read, a youth who is 24 years of age or under… 13. There was a question regarding the new OMB Circular and it was asked where the subcontractors should get their staff trained for fiscal? a. Brandi said help was coming. She said WIB staff just attended DOL training at Chicago and she thought the State had their training last week. Then the State was doing a roundtable with the WIBs next week and from there she thought they would be putting out more training for our subcontractors. However, from what she had learned at this point, it didn’t appear there would be that much change for the subcontractors. Meeting adjourned at 2:15