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 Fiscal Year 2018 Annual Report

Fiscal Year 2018 was challenging for Delaware disability service providers. Legislators heard and understood the pleas of disability professionals, family members and supporters regarding the dire need to increase Delaware Division of Developmental Disabilities Services (DDDS) rates for Direct Service Professionals (DSPs) who impact individual lives every day. The $4.67 million appropriated to the FY 2019 State budget in response to those pleas was a much needed help. However, it was a far cry from the minimum $9 million installment of the $20 million over three years requested under the McNesby Act that would have brought providers up to sustainable levels. And it wasn’t nearly enough to offset the 20-25% deficits in funding indicated in a 2014 rate study that have plagued Delaware agencies more than 14 years.
With the funding issue still prevalent for the FY2020 budget, an updated DDDS Market Rate Study Draft to be released in January 2019 shows an even more dire picture of provider rates being underfunded up to 35% against the current cost of providing Intellectual/Developmental Disabilities (I/DD) services. It’s evident that the voices for Delaware’s citizens with I/DD must ratchet up the volume between now and the finalization of the FY20 State budget in June to keep service providers viable for the years to come.
Despite the challenges, KSI board and staff members dedicated themselves again and again to preserving high-quality services for Delawareans with I/DD. In FY18, KSI was given its next three-year accreditation from the Commission for Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF), which resulted from an extensive survey of KSI’s program, procedural and policy standards based on performance of rehabilitation providers world-wide. KSI also successfully passed an exhaustive DDDS annual audit and remained in good standing with the State agency. We were also designated by the Delaware Insurance Commissioner’s Office as a Safe Workplace once again, as well as having a successful Risk Control safety audit conducted by the organization’s Worker’s Compensation captive insurer Summit/Gallagher Bassett.
Continuing our fiscal responsibility in running KSI’s transport fleet, we finished FY18 with a $54,922 surplus that helped balance out expenses in other departments. KSI preserves its ongoing commitment to fuel cost reduction through propane use, thanks to generous donations from several private entities. KSI’s transportation fleet drove 978,334 miles in FY18, providing 72,484 passenger trips to work opportunities, volunteer sites, community inclusion experiences and training at the Skill Development Center.
An additional 9,342 trips were to one of the 170 community partner locations offering chances for discovery and volunteerism. In fact, KSI participants performed 8,024 hours of volunteer service for numerous nonprofits and community organizations, contributing their abilities to better others’ lives. More transportation resources were also added to handle KSI’s growing janitorial services at five CHEER locations in Kent and Sussex County, DETurf, Georgetown Fire Hall, and Georgetown Town Hall. Opportunities for community crew work at Kraft Heinz Foods and Merck Animal Health also expanded in FY18, adding more chances for KSI participants to shine.
As part of Pre-Vocational training and experience, KSI paid total wages of more than $791,876 to participants working on community crews, janitorial teams and Pre-Vocational production jobs. All in all, we provided participants with 24,589 paid work hours at the Milford Skill Development Center and 96,080 hours at community employment sites.
Skill Development Center subcontract work, including KSI Cartridge Service sales, brought in a total income of $513,437 to help fund ­programs and paid work opportunities. Community-based crew contracts created a $1,504,622 income in FY18 as well. And all persons working on those jobs were paid at least full minimum wage. KSI continues to seek production, rework and packaging work that will match our participants’ skills and provide real work experience to prepare individuals for community employment.
Once more, all of this was possible through the support of families, community members, civic groups, foundations, nonprofits, businesses, agencies and so many more that have made such a difference in our organization’s ability to move forward in challenging times. It’s the enthusiasm and generosity of our community partners, staff and dynamic Board of Directors that help our participants reach their goals. And we welcome inquiries for personal or group presentations to help more people understand the significance of KSI’s participants and their contributions to the community. In FY19, I encourage you to partner with KSI to create success stories that change people’s lives.