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LIHEAP Dear Colleague Notice on the Training and Technical Assistance Meeting in San Diego, CA

Published: April 2, 2013
Audience:
Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP)
Category:
Guidance, Policies, Procedures, Dear Colleague Notices

LOW-INCOME HOME ENERGY
ASSISTANCE

 

Dear Colleague Letter

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
Administration for Children and Families
Office of Community Services
Division of Energy Assistance
370 L'Enfant Promenade, S.W.
Washington, D.C.  20447
http://www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/liheap

 

Date: April 2, 2013

 

TO:             LOW INCOME HOME ENERGY ASSISTANCE PROGRAM (LIHEAP) GRANTEES

SUBJECT:  Grantee Participation Strongly Requested at the 2013 OCS National LIHEAP Grantee Training Meeting (June 7-8, 2013)  and the National Energy Utility and Affordability Conference (NEUAC, June 10-12, 2013)

Dear Colleagues:

The Office of Community Services (OCS) is pleased to announce that we will convene a National Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) Grantee Training Meeting on June 7-8, 2013, in San Diego, California.  This is a unique training opportunity and we strongly encourage all directly funded LIHEAP grantees to participate.  It is expected that each LIHEAP grantee will send at least one representative, though staff in addition to the LIHEAP coordinator are welcome to attend (such as a budget officer). 

The National LIHEAP Grantee Training Meeting is a closed training event for directly funded LIHEAP grantees only.  There is no registration fee for this training.  Grantees may use LIHEAP funds within their administrative cost cap for travel expenses related to this training.  For more information and to RSVP to attend.

The OCS National LIHEAP Grantee Training Meeting will be coordinated by the National Energy Assistance Directors Association (NEADA), under contract with OCS.  This will be an opportunity for State, Tribal, and Territory LIHEAP coordinators to hear directly from OCS regarding important changes to LIHEAP policies and procedures and receive training in key areas of program administration.  Topics to be covered include, but are not limited to:

  • new required LIHEAP performance measures;
  • demonstration of the new web-based data analysis and information sharing tool;
  • changes in reporting requirements, including a demonstration of the ACF On-line Data Collection (OLDC) system;
  • LIHEAP program design and innovative approaches to leverage the flexibility of the block grant;
  • best practices and lessons learned from the past several years of LIHEAP compliance reviews; and
  • vendor monitoring and internal controls.

The training will also provide an opportunity for new State staff to engage in roundtable discussions with other LIHEAP coordinators, Federal OCS staff, and partners to share ideas, coordinate, and develop a network of resources. 

Future communication regarding conference registration, agenda, and hotel information will be disseminated directly by NEADA.

In addition, we believe the annual National Energy and Utility Affordability Conference (NEUAC) is an important training opportunity and encourage participation among LIHEAP administrators and staff new to the administration and management of the LIHEAP.  NEUAC will also be held at the Hilton San Diego Bayfront Hotel from June 10-12, 2013.  It covers a broader array of home energy topics and is widely attended by hundreds of people representing LIHEAP programs, local intake centers, utility companies, and advocacy organizations.  OCS scheduled its training to coincide with the NEUAC to facilitate LIHEAP grantees’ participation at both training opportunities.  

The annual NEUAC conference provides a variety of general sessions and energy assistance workshop sessions that enhance and improve state administration and implementation of the LIHEAP block grant.  Our office will be presenting a workshop with Federal LIHEAP officials at 11 am on June 10 (Track C), a Tribal dialogue with Federal LIHEAP officials at 2 pm on June 10 (Track F), a workshop on Assurance 16 and Leveraging at 11 am on June 12 (Track C), and a workshop session for new Tribal LIHEAP Coordinators at 11 am on June 10 (Track F). You can learn more about NEUAC and register online at: www.neuac.org.  Early Bird registration closes on May 3, 2013.

We recognize grantee budget challenges around the country are forcing difficult decisions regarding training investments.  We specifically designed the LIHEAP Training Conference to be held in conjunction with NEUAC, so that attendees can save on travel costs and still gain the benefit of attending both events.  Please note that staff costs related to training is an allowable LIHEAP administrative expense and may be paid with Federal funds so long as it is within the applicable administrative cost cap.  OCS expects grantees will utilize administrative funds to support and maintain strong administration of the LIHEAP block grant.

Please contact your OCS liaison for your region if you have questions. 

Sincerely,

 

/s__________________________
Jeannie L. Chaffin
Director
Office of Community Services