End of fiscal year could delay some grants

Jun. 30, 2014 @ 06:52 PM

About a dozen Franklin-Vance-Warren Opportunity employees might not go into work Tuesday if the organization’s state grant contracts are not signed and delivered by the appropriate state agencies in Raleigh.

The Community Services Block Grant and Family Resource Center are funded through the state Department of Health and Human Services, Division of Social Services, which are responsible for executing contracts with local agencies by July 1 — the beginning of the fiscal year.

The block grant program promotes independence through the Economic Self-Sufficiency Project, which is a comprehensive employment preparation, training, development, placement and retention program designed to assist low-income individuals to find work that allows them to support their family.

The project includes a two-step approach — group and individualized ­— to people learn to support themselves.

The Family Resource Center is a comprehensive community center that offers parenting education, parents support groups and family enrichment activities.

The weatherization program and HARRP — or Heating Air Repair & Replacement Program — will also be affected.

These programs are funded through the North Carolina Division of Environment and Natural Resources, Division of Energy, Minerals and Land Resources, Energy Section.

Franklin-Vance-Warren Opportunity CEO Sara Rudolph said the contracts were dropped off in Raleigh by her staff Monday morning.

She said the contracts cannot be executed if both parties — her organization and the state agency — do not sign them.

She said 13 total case managers who work for the Community Services Block Grant and Family Resource Center programs could temporarily be out of work if the contracts for those programs are not executed by July 1.

But Rudolph said the program directors will continue to manage caseloads and meet contractual obligations in the meantime.

“We are still going to provide contracted services, although it may take a little longer to do so,” she said.

Each year, about 150 individuals participate in the block grant program and 100 families participate in resource center.

“As a nonprofit, this agency does not have unrestricted funds to bridge funding gaps,” she said. “Because we cannot incur costs, employees will be laid off until we receive signed contracts back from the state.”

Rudolph, who has worked for Franklin-Vance-Warren Opportunity for almost 18 years, said there has been a delay in executing grant contracts for the past three years she has served as CEO.

The longest duration any employee has been out of work was 30 days, she said.

“If we don’t have contracts executed by the end of business today, staff will be laid off until executed contracts are received,” she said Monday.

 

Contact the writer at smansur@hendersondispatch.com.