The Assistive Technology Advisory Council (ATAC) has approved a new service delivery model for the Florida Alliance for Assistive Services and Technology’s (FAAST) Regional Demonstration Centers. These Centers are subcontracts of FAAST that provide FAAST services such as assistive technology device demonstrations, loans, training, and information and assistance activities to specific regions of Florida.

FAAST is asking organizations across the state that serve individuals with disabilities of all ages and have experience working with assistive technology to submit a proposal for a Regional Demonstration Center in their region.

Below is a list of important dates regarding the opened Regional Demonstration Center Proposals, a list of regions with counties, links to download each proposal, a link to the Letter of Intent, and a list of frequently asked questions. At this time, only four regional proposals are open. An addendum has been posted regarding the North Central, Southeast, and West Central RFPs.

Important Dates (more detail provided in each proposal)

Request for Proposal Release 8/30/2021 (Northeast RDC Proposal Release 9/07/2021)

Letter of Intent Due 9/10/2021 by 5:00 p.m. EDT

Written Questions Due 9/17/2021 by 12:00 p.m. EDT

FAAST Response to Written Questions 9/24/2021 by 12:00 p.m. EDT

Proposals Due 10/08/2021 by 12:00 p.m. EDT

Evaluation and Proposal Scoring Completed 10/25/2021 by 12:00 p.m. EDT

Proposal Results Confirmed by ATAC 11/17/2021

Top Ranked Proposals Posted on www.faast.org 11/17/2021 by 5:00 p.m. EDT

Open Regional Demonstration Centers County List

North Central – Alachua, Bradford, Columbia, Dixie, Gilchrist, Hamilton, Lafayette, Levy, Marion, Suwanee, and Union

Northeast – Baker, Clay, Duval, Flagler, Nassau, Putnam, and Saint Johns

West Central – Citrus, Hernando, Lake, Pasco, and Sumter

Southeast – Indian River, Martin, Okeechobee, Palm Beach, and Saint Lucie

Master List of Regions with Map

Links to Download Proposals

FAAST Regional Demonstration Center Request for Proposal 2021 2.0 – North Central PDF

FAAST Regional Demonstration Center Request for Proposal 2021 2.0 – North Central Application WORD

FAAST Regional Demonstration Center Request for Proposal 2021 2.0 – Northeast PDF

FAAST Regional Demonstration Center Request for Proposal 2021 2.0 – Northeast Application WORD

FAAST Regional Demonstration Center Request for Proposal 2021 2.0 – Southeast PDF

FAAST Regional Demonstration Center Request for Proposal 2021 2.0 – Southeast Application WORD

FAAST Regional Demonstration Center Request for Proposal 2021 2.0 – West Central PDF

FAAST Regional Demonstration Center Request for Proposal 2021 2.0 – West Central Application WORD

FAAST Regional Demonstration Center RFP Addendum 1.0

Letter of Intent WORD

Letter of Intent PDF

Frequently Asked Questions for Regional Demonstration Center Project Proposals

Question: Can any organization submit a proposal?

Answer: The requirements for an organization to submit a proposal are that they must be located in Florida, must provide services in Florida, must serve individuals who have disabilities of all ages, and must have an understanding of assistive technology devices.

Question: Is an organization that submits a proposal required to have assistive technology devices purchased prior to applying?

Answer: No, FAAST will provide all the assistive technology devices needed for an organization to host a Regional Demonstration Center. An organization will, however, need space to store the assistive technology devices in a temperature-controlled environment.

Question: Is an organization submitting a proposal required to have a certain number of staff hours to operate a Regional Demonstration Center?

Answer: No, FAAST does not have requirements on the minimum number of hours the organization’s staff must spend on the Regional Demonstration Center contract.

Question: Can an organization submit a proposal for multiple regions?

Answer: Yes, an organization can submit a proposal for as many regions as they choose but they must submit a separate proposal for each region. Each proposal will be scored separately, regardless if they are submitted by the same organization. If an organization submits multiple proposals, it does not guarantee that they will be awarded all the regions they have submitted proposals for.

Question: Can an organization partner with multiple organizations to submit a proposal?

Answer: FAAST can only contract with one organization per county, meaning that an organization that submits a proposal can not then subcontract with another organization to serve a county in their region. However, if multiple organizations want to submit a proposal that would include them each serving certain counties in a region, that is acceptable and FAAST will have the option to break the region into separate contracts. If multiple organizations do submit one proposal to serve certain counties, it must be clearly stated in their proposal. Funding and deliverables are tied to each county; therefore the contract funding and deliverables will be based on the counties served by each organization.

Question: What if an organization doesn’t want to submit a proposal for an entire region and does not have partner organizations to jointly submit a proposal?

Answer: If an organization only wants to serve certain counties in a region, but not the entire region, this is acceptable for a proposal. The organization must submit a proposal for that region but clearly state in the proposal that their proposal is only for a specific county(s). If awarded a contract for their proposal, the organization will only be contracted for the funding and deliverables tied to the specific county(s) listed in their proposal. FAAST does have the option to negotiate adding additional counties to a contract if no other proposals were awarded for a county/region.

Question: How can an organization find out the dollar amount and deliverable number for each county?

Answer: Here is a PDF document that lists the funding and deliverables per county: County Breakdown by Funding and Deliverable

Question: I would appreciate your guidance on the difference between the FAQ and RFP response to the question (below).
Web FAQ: “meaning that an organization that submits a proposal can not then subcontract with another organization to serve a county in their region.”                
RFP 7.M: “only with prior written approval of FAAST, enter into written subcontracts for performance of specific services under the contract.”

Answer: FAAST intends to subcontract directly with an organization providing Regional Demonstration Center services in a county. Please use the “Web FAQ” as the standard and the “RFP 7.M” as the exception.

Question: On the application VIII. Reference section there is a signature of an authorized representative. Can you clarify who would be the appropriate person to sign this?

Answer: The person responsible for submitting the application on behalf of the organization. This can be the same person from the Letter of Intent.

Question: If multiple organizations are going in on one RFP how should we fill out the Title Page and the RFP Form page? For example: Show we put ALL 3 organizations info on one page or make 3 separate pages (1 for each organization). Also, will all 3 organizations need to sign separate certification pages.

Answer: To reduce confusion, please provide separate proposal items for each organization for a multiple organization proposal. Proposal items are listed in Section 3.C.2. in the RFP. It is best to be as clear and consistent as possible.

Question: Proposal Number 21-ARDC states “applicant shall provide a minimum of 54 device loans with 73 devices per quarter within the contract terms (213 Device loans with 290 devices annually). When you say 213 device loans do you mean device 213 device loan events? I ask because on the attached county breakdown it states 213 for total number of Device Loan events. Just need clarification on what 213 Device loans with 290 devices annually means.

Answer: “Device loan” and “device loan event” are synonymous. A device loan would be when an individual borrows an assistive technology device from an RDC. Device loans may have multiple devices that are used to help the individual make a decision. For example, if an individual borrows two separate hearing assistive technology devices that would be one device loan event, but two devices.

Question: For a multi-organization proposal – do we submit three Part I. of RFP form for each organization or include each organization’s information in each of the boxes for Part I. (i.e. each organization’s legal name I.A.; each organization’s contact information I.B., etc.)? Same question for Part VIII (References – three for each organization or three total); Attachments II, III and IV)?

Answer: To reduce confusion, please provide separate proposal items for each organization for a multiple organization proposal. Proposal items are listed in Section 3.C.2. in the RFP. It is best to be as clear and consistent as possible.

Question: Are electronic signatures sufficient for documents/attachments where signatures are required?

Answer: Yes, electronic signatures are acceptable.

Question: For the Assistive Technology Trainings, can other experienced staff who train individuals on how to use AT items (i.e. our home accessibility and Deaf services programs) count those individuals for these deliverables even if they are not funded through this grant?

Answer: Yes, FAAST understands that in extenuating circumstances other qualified staff related to your program who are not described in your proposal(s) may assist with contract deliverables without being paid by the contract. FAAST encourages applicants to describe all staff (even if their salaries are not funded through the contract) that would be assisting with the RDC deliverables in their completed proposals.

Question: What is the definition and the difference between a device loan (from Application i.e. provide minimum of 24 device loans) and a device (from Application with 32 devices) and a device loan event (from County Breakdown: Funding and Deliverables sheet)?

Answer: “Device loan” and “device loan event” are synonymous. A device loan would be when an individual borrows an assistive technology device from an RDC. Device loans may have multiple devices that are used to help the individual make a decision. For example, if an individual borrows two separate hearing assistive technology devices that would be one device loan event, but two devices.

Question: Can a deliverable from multiple categories be achieved during one “event”?

Answer: No, a deliverable is tied to a single event. However, multiple deliverables can be achieved through one individual. For example, an individual may learn about the RDC’s services through a public awareness event (i.e. exhibiting at an event or attending an AT training). That individual may follow up with the RDC and ask more questions about assistive technology (an information and assistance activity deliverable) and may request a device demonstration to compare and contrast devices (demonstration deliverable). Then they may borrow a device(s) through the short-term loans (device loan event and device loan device deliverables). Finally, they may acquire the device through FAAST’s Regional ReUse Centers or through FAAST’s financial loan program (these deliverables are not in the RDC contracts).

Question: What is the definition of an “event”?

Answer: An “event” is the activity or action that takes place, not a physical event like a conference. “Device loan” and “device loan event” are synonymous.

Question: If awarded Contract, how long does the contract last? What is process after contract ends for future years of this program?

Answer: The RDC projects are one-year contracts (October-September), with the option to extend the contract twice. Therefore, overall the RDC project could be continued with an organization for three years before having to be open for proposal again. The four current RDC proposals are for 9-months (1/012022-9/30/2022). If extended, these four contracts will be one-year contracts moving forward.

Question: Would you be able to share the link or the reference FAAST used to find the percentage of people with disabilities in Florida by Region?

Answer: This data was pulled from the 2019 American Community Survey. Statewide prevalence of disability (13.66%) was used for counties that did not report actual disability figures in 2019 ACS Report. The excel spreadsheet used in FAAST’s service delivery model can be downloaded through this link: 2019 ACS Disability by FL County Data

Question: Can FAAST clarify the intent of the Ownership of Products section in the RFP? Specifically, what is FAAST intending to capture when referring to products resulting from the project?

Answer: The “Ownership of Products” section lets a subcontractor know that anything created and purchased using FAAST dollars is the property of FAAST unless explicitly waived by FAAST.

Question: Will NATADS continue to be data collection tool that RDCs will be required to use for reporting? If yes, see question next question.

Answer: Yes, NATADS is the federal data collection system for Assistive Technology Act programs.

Question: The RFP states “monthly data reports that will contain detailed information of appropriate targeted individuals and entities and will contain detailed information on disability type, gender, ethnicity/race, age and county/residence”. Since NATADS doesn’t currently capture this information, does this mean we will have to compile this information separately from NATADS? Will a separate reporting tool be provided?

Answer: Custom data collection fields will be added to NATADS starting on October 1, 2021, that will be used to collect information on disability type, gender, ethnicity/race, age, and county/residence.

Question: Will deliverables be assessed on a monthly, quarterly or annual basis? Will there be sanctions? If there are sanctions, will they be applied monthly, quarterly or annually?

Answer: Deliverables will be collected through monthly reporting, as collected with current RDC contracts. The RDC contracts will have some deliverables that will be due on a quarterly basis and some on an annual basis. FAAST does not apply sanctions. RDCs are paid for the services they provide, therefore, if all contract deliverables are not provided then the RDC will not receive payment for deliverables not provided. Payments are made on a monthly basis.

Question: What is the status of equipment for existing RDCS? Are we going to be given funds to buy the latest AT, just as the new RDC’s will be given?

Answer: FAAST’s assistive technology device inventory will be redistributed to ensure all RDCs have the core inventory to provide services. New devices will be bought to fill the core inventory list as needed. FAAST will determine a process for all RDCs to request devices if there are any funds remaining.

Question: Will the loans be counted by start date or end date?

Answer: Device loans are counted by end date. Device loans end when the device is checked back in at the RDC.

Question: What happens to people that need services after the number of loans have been completed for the month/quarter/year after the allotted funding is exhausted.

Answer: Any individuals that the RDCs are unable to serve for any reason, should be referred to FAAST’s Northwest RDC (FAAST Headquarters) to receive services. Services provided to individuals that were referred from an RDC to the Northwest RDC will not be counted in the referring RDC’s deliverables.