Hamilton County Developmental Disabilities Services
From the Superintendent
Important decision about our future direction
March 1, 2017

As we've been sharing for a few years, federal rules from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), along with several other mandates, are requiring Hamilton County DD Services, and every county DD board across the state, to change the traditional ways services have been delivered for more than 40 years. 

Last May we began a formal Request for Qualifications (RFQ) process to find a provider to operate Beckman, Franks, and Kidd adult centers. We chose this option to give individuals and families the greatest control over their services and provide continuity for those who wish to stay at the adult centers. That process is complete and a provider has been selected. Beginning May 1, operation of Beckman, Franks, and Kidd adult centers will become the full responsibility of Active Day.

Active Day is the largest provider of adult day and personal home services in the United States. They currently have more than 80 locations across the country helping more than 6,200 individuals achieve a healthy and active quality of life. "We're excited to have this opportunity to work with the individuals and staff at Beckman, Franks, and Kidd adult centers and look forward to continuing to provide quality services to people with developmental disabilities in this community," said Craig Mehnert, chief operating officer at Active Day.

Hamilton County DD Services will continue to operate the centers through the end of April with everyone who chooses to attend and the staff who want to remain employed with us until then. On May 1 Active Day will assume operation of Beckman, Franks, and Kidd providing the same array of services, including work and leisure opportunities, to everyone who wants to stay at the adult centers and with staff who accept employment with the new provider.

We recognize these times of significant change are difficult for everyone, but we are working to make this transition as seamless as possible for all involved. Although Hamilton County DD Services will no longer provide direct services through the adult centers, we will continue to provide quality monitoring and remain the source of funding for individuals.

Between now and May 1, service and support administrators (SSAs) will be working with individuals who attend the adult centers to complete "My Plan" revisions. We will host informational meetings for family members with representatives from Active Day  on March 14 at 10 a.m. at Kidd; 1 p.m. and 6:15 p.m. at Beckman; and on March 15 at 10 a.m. at Franks.

The dedication, care, and patience of our staff at the adult centers has been unparalleled, particularly during these recent times of uncertainty. We are tremendously grateful for each and every one of these wonderful staff members. One of our requirements in the RFQ was the new provider employ staff who currently work at the adult centers.

Representatives of Active Day will be meeting with adult center staff on March 3 to introduce themselves and begin the transition process. Over the coming weeks, our human resources team will be working with Active Day and adult center staff to ensure a smooth transition for everyone who chooses to stay employed at the centers.

We have a longstanding tradition of caring at this agency that will continue as we work toward our mission to promote and support opportunities for people with developmental disabilities to live, work, learn, and fully participate in their communities. 
Alice C. Pavey

You can find more detailed information about the issues driving these and other changes on our website.

If you have questions about this transition, please email AdultCenterQuestions@hamiltondds.org

If you attend one of the adult centers, your SSA will be in touch soon to schedule your transition meeting. If you have other questions, please contact your adult center director, listed below.
Beckman Adult Center:  Tom Ciulla 
tom.ciulla@hamiltondds.org | (513) 559-6956

Kidd Adult Center:  Wes Birkhold

Franks Adult Center: Contact Chris Miller

Chris Miller, General Manager of General Assembly
chris.miller@hamiltondds.org | (513) 559-6959

Melissa Morelli, General Manager of Adult Services

Issues Driving System Change
Guide to state and federal mandates
Over the last several years, state and federal mandates have begun to reshape the way services are delivered to individuals with disabilities across the nation, in Ohio and in Hamilton County. This document is meant to help you better understand the regulations requiring these changes in Ohio and provide you with resources to learn more.

Supreme Court's Olmstead Decision of 1999 and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990
  • Ruled that segregation of individuals with disabilities violates the ADA
  • Applies to HCDDS-operated adult centers and providers
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) 2014 rule eliminates funding for segregated services by 2019, in response to Olmstead
  • This includes funding for anyone who attends an adult center operated by a County Board of DD, which is considered in a segregated setting. Federal Medicaid funding will no longer pay for those services after 2019
The CMS requirement that a provider of services should not also be a provider of case management
  • This rule means we cannot operate direct services, including adult centers, and perform case management services, such as Service and Support Administration (SSA), at the same time. 
  • CMS has given Ohio until 2024 to come into compliance.
 Employment First Initiative 
  • This does not mean everyone has to work. It does require conversations about where a person served is along the path to employment. The steps on this path include: not interested in working, exploring work options, seeking help to find a job, and successfully working in competitive employment.
Find more detailed information about each of these issues on the Ohio DODD website. You can also download this guide from our website.