CTCDD: Proposal Review Meeting 5-7-12

Proposal Review Meeting 5-7-12



 Draft Minutes

Connecticut Council on Developmental Disabilities


Special Meeting

May 7th, 2012

9:30 am to 10:15 am

Fairfield Public Library - Rotary Room

1080 Old Post Road Fairfield, CT 06824

The following discussions occurred:

The Chair opened the meeting and declared that the PRC was holding this meeting as noticed, but without a quorum in attendance.

Mr. Sullivan noted that in his 18 months as a Council member he had attended over two dozen meetings on behalf of the Council.

Although several members were involved during the meeting via emails, the Chair pointed out that their responses are not to be taken as attendees or participants of the meeting as per Council By-Laws.

The Chair reminded members that as per the By-Laws; Electronic mail shall be used for the dissemination of information and to facilitate communication…email may be used by standing committees”. The PRC is a standing Committee.

1. Molly Cole, Executive Director – After the meeting was called to order, the Executive Director was asked if she or her staff had received advance notice from Ms. Monica Smyth of her inability to attend as per the By-Laws. ED Cole responded that neither she nor the Council staff had been notified and therefore Ms. Smyth will marked as an “unexcused” absence from the meeting.


2. Attendance At Meetings - Ms. Smyth was asked during the meeting why she was not part of helping create a quorum. She replied by confirming her email address and another copy of the agenda was re-forwarded to that same email address which she uses for all Council business. Jennifer Throwe by email notified the Committee on May 7th, 2012 shortly before the meeting began, of her inability to attend, and was thanked for her notification. All other members, unable to attend, duly notified the Chairs.


3. Audit Report; ECCONN – The ECCONN grant was discussed. According to correspondence forwarded by the Executive Director, ECCONN was apparently unable and/or unwilling to provide an audit in both 2010 or 2011, as per their MOU. The overarching concern the Council may wish to formally investigate and explore is the so-called “Site Visit” report submitted by Mr. Edward Preneta which appeared to indicate that all was in order financially. Without an audit as per the MOU, members may wish to have that Site Visit report re-examined as the Council has paid out almost $100,000 in funds to ECCONN.

The Council might consider asking future Grantees to sign a separate affirmation that they understand they need to provide audited financials with parameters based upon their size. Audit requirements for Grantees are currently posted on the Council’s website.

The recent moves by the Council to loosen financial oversight of grants is perhaps ill-advised at this time given the experience of the Council including both ECCONN and the still unexplained discrepancy between the number of attendees advertised for Wrightslaw last year and the purchase agreements for materials well in excess of the number attendees, as advertised. An email inquiry into same by Vice-Chair Lombardi has apparently been left unanswered by the Council for quite some time.

There was some concern that the letter to the Council from ECCONN dated 4-22-12 was marked “Draft” and members were unsure as to why that was the case. No explanation accompanied the document. A copy of the letter is attached to these minutes.

4. Inquiry to the Secretary of State – An inquiry prior to the meeting and during the meeting indicated that there is an “Educational Consultants of Connecticut” listed in New London, CT. The ECCONN grant, however, lists a different address in CT. No explanation of the discrepancy was available to the PRC at the meeting nor has one been provided despite inquiries to the Executive Director.

5. Problems with Past Grants - At the December 8th, 2011 meeting and according to the minutes of that meeting, Mr. Reed mentioned he was aware of many problems, some financial and others involving access and accommodations for persons with disabilities, which plagued “Powerfest”. The PRC discussed Council Chairman Reed providing fuller disclosure of that which he is aware in writing so that the Council may avoid or prevent such issues in the future.

4. August 2011 Minutes – These minutes were previously approved but the Council website failed to take note of that action. Website needs be updated (as per the December 2011 discussion noted in the minutes), as the website is seriously out of date. Noted also was the site still lists Anita Tremarche as Chair even though she abruptly resigned last summer.

5. Staff Generated Proposals - PRC discussed the Council placing these proposals on the DD Suite for the sake of integrity and oversight.

6. Chair Thanked PRC Members – Participants, including the Executive Director, sent valuable updates and information via emails during the meeting.

7. Old Business - It was noted from the previous minutes from Ms. Smyth had agreed to take up several pieces of business on behalf of the Committee but had not reported back as to her activities, complete or incomplete, to the Chairs or the Committee in almost six (6) months time.

8. Adjournment – Meeting adjourned as per the agenda.


DRAFT 4-22-2012

Molly Cole, Director CT Council on Developmental Disabilities

460 Capitol Avenue

Hartford, CT 06106

Dear Ms. Cole,

This letter is a follow up to our meet with Cathleen Adamczyk on April 16th2012. At that meeting I requested eliminating the grant requirement for the audit or seeking council funding to fund the audit. An audit for LLC business is too costly and thus prohibitive to my continuing with the contract. As it is not an option to be exempt from the single state audit I am regretfully terminating the agreement between the CT DD Council and ECCONN effective April 16th, 2012. As discussed and agreed upon you will receive a final report within 30 days of this letter along with a final expenditure report and report summary of activities along with data to date and any unexpended funds under the current MOU as of April 16th, 2012.

Thank you for your efforts in meeting and working with me to try to resolve this matter. Please let me know if I can provide any clarification or further information. I hope to still continue collaboration and connection with the CT DD Council in a different capacity.


Sharon Golder, Director Educational Consultants of Connecticut (860) 966-8816

Content Last Modified on 5/18/2012 10:28:51 AM