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West Virginia Commission for the Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing

August 14, 2003

Capitol Complex, Building 6, Room 819-B

Commission Members Present:

Dr. Charles Abraham
J.D. Corbin
Doug Godfrey
Jim Harrison
Emily Hopta
Barbara King
Pat Moss
Delores Pyles
Pam Roush

Pierre Sevigny
Dr. James T. Spencer
Mike Sullivan
Gary Vandevander
Commission Members Absent:

Jennifer Burgess



Deanna Stone, Commission Office


Howard Gorrell
Roy Pyles
Molly Stedman


I. Welcome

Doug Godfrey called the meeting to order at 1:31 p.m.

II. Approval of the Minutes

Barbara King moved that the minutes be approved as read, with the amendments of correcting the typed order of the minutes, discussion of the mission statement and Jimmy Harrison’s agreement to continue serving on the board. Gary Vandevander seconded the motion. The minutes were unanimously approved as amended.

III. Director’s Report

Deanna Stone provided board members with an informational review of her first three weeks with the Commission, including future training and goals. Ms. Stone requested the board approve her attendance at the 2003 PATHS Conference (Partners in Assistive TecHnology) on September 17-19 at the Charleston Civic Center. Ms. Stone also requested approval to begin investigating a retreat date and location for November 2003, following the hiring of additional staff, and to reprint the Commission Directory for 2004. Her final request was to begin investigating means to increase the number of certified interpreters in the state and development of a licensing system.

Pierre Sevigny moved that Ms. Stone have permission to develop the 2004 directory and begin planning for the retreat. Dr. Abraham seconded and the motion passed unanimously.

IV. WVAD Conference

Program booklets from the WVAD Conference were distributed to provide board members with an overview of the event and the ad placed by the board. The board’s sponsorship and speech by Executive Director Deanna Stone at the Saturday dinner was greatly appreciated. Close to 70 people attended the weekend conference.

V. Board Terms

Barbara King presented the board with a draft policy for board member responsibilities. Questions were raised regarding limitations on consecutive terms. Pat Moss noted that Larry Arnold had walked the board through the statute several years ago. Emily Hopta will look for a copy of Larry’s document and will request John Law, Director of Communications for DHHR, to attend the next board meeting.

VI. Personnel Committee

The Committee submitted job position descriptions for the Deputy Director and Statewide Interpreter Coordinator to the board for review. There was discussion of increasing the sign language requirement for the Deputy Director from one year to "demonstrate proficiency" and to make signing part of the interview process. Barbara King recommended the board approve and post the positions with the change in language for the Deputy Director position. Delores Pyles seconded the motion. Pat Moss noted that the mission as listed on the job descriptions may change as the mission statement is currently under review. There was no further discussion and the motion passed unanimously.


VII. Interview Committee

The following members will serve on the interview committee for the Deputy Director and Statewide Interpreter Coordinator positions: Jimmy Harrison, Barbara King, Doug Godfrey, Pat Moss and Deanna Stone. Pierre Sevigny will serve as alternate. Mike Sullivan moved that the Interview Committee have full authorization for selection. Jimmy Harrison seconded and the vote passed unanimously.

VIII. Interpreter Conference

Molly Stedman reported on the Interpreter Conference, noting that the presenter was very knowledgeable. The average West Virginia EIPA score is 2.33 (on a 0-5 scale), which is poor but no worse than any other state. Sixty-one people attended the conference.

IX. TTY Loan Program

The TTY Loan Program is facing a backlog of twenty-five requests. Deanna is investigating repairs for broken phones that have been returned to the Commission office as well as purchase of new phones. Delores Pyles noted that TTYs have a life of about ten years.

Deanna is interested in having applicants submit an audiology report. Barbara King noted that DRS may have reports on file for some applicants and that an issue may be the recency of the audiogram. Delores suggested reviewing the applicants to the loan process and perhaps narrowing the field of certification for the loan program. Pam Roush suggested looking at the PERD recommendations and Emily Hopta noted the discrepancy in income levels among recipients. Pat Moss concluded that there are a lot of unanswered questions regarding access and authorization surrounding the process of testing and certification for TTYs. Pat suggested the Commission look into insurance policies, verify both monetary need and hearing, and set up an application process that insures the Commission is a good steward of state taxpayer money.

Pat moved that the Commission look into these issues in greater detail. James Spencer seconded her motion, which passed unanimously.

X. Announcements

Kara Russell, former Commission employee, received the NAD Golden Hands award at the WVAD Conference.

XI. Adjournment

Pierre Sevigny moved that the meeting be adjourned and Delores Pyles seconded. The vote passed unanimously and the meeting concluded at 4:00 p.m.


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