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RULE §392.305General Requirements for Contracting

(a) To contract with DARS, the contractor must:

  (1) meet eligibility requirements for contracting;

  (2) if applicable, have and maintain the appropriate license(s);

  (3) submit all documents and information required by DARS;

  (4) comply with all applicable DARS and Texas Health and Human Services Commission rules and policies and terms of the contract with DARS;

  (5) comply with all local, state, and federal regulations that apply to the contract;

  (6) be authorized by law or the Secretary of State to conduct business in the state of Texas;

  (7) certify in writing that the contractor's taxes due to the state of Texas are current;

  (8) ensure that staff members providing services are competent, professionally ethical, and qualified for positions held. Qualifications of staff members must meet all requirements established by state policy and regulations. The contractor must ensure that all staff members meet minimum qualifications; staff credentials supporting those qualifications must be on file at the time of hire; and staff credentials must be made available to DARS staff members upon request;

  (9) provide for such fiscal control and fund accounting as may be necessary to ensure proper disbursement and accounting of funds provided by DARS and in accordance with DARS policies;

  (10) maintain accurate and complete records and prepare and distribute reports according to the terms of the contract;

  (11) ensure that any contractor facility in which services are provided is:

    (A) such that the safety and health of the staff and consumers is protected; and

    (B) accessible to individuals receiving services and complies with the requirements of the Architectural Barriers Act of 1968, the Uniform Federal Accessibility Standards, the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act;

  (12) have adequate operating funds available for conducting business on the effective date of the contract;

  (13) have an adequate staff to provide services on the effective date of the contract;

  (14) notify DARS and HHSC in writing of changes to contract information according to the requirements of the contract. Unless otherwise specified in the contract, the contractor must notify DARS and HHSC:

    (A) within 10 calendar days after any address change, including the location of the contractor's office, physical address, or mailing address;

    (B) immediately of any change in administrator or director; and

    (C) within seven working days of any change in the contact telephone number designated in the contract; and

  (15) report suspected violation of rules or laws to the appropriate investigative authority. This includes reporting abuse, neglect, and exploitation issues to the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS) or to the appropriate Texas Department of Aging and Disability Services (DADS) licensing staff.

(b) To provide services, a contractor must maintain adequate:

  (1) funding for provision of services; and

  (2) staff for the provision of services.

(c) A contractor or potential contractor may not offer, give, or agree to give a DARS employee anything of value.

(d) A contractor or potential contractor may not engage in any activity that presents a real or apparent conflict of interest.

(e) A former DARS employee may not represent or receive compensation from any person concerning any contractual matter in which the former employee participated during his or her employment with the state.

(f) DARS may choose not to enter into a contract:

  (1) when, in DARS' opinion, the contractor, potential contractor, or a controlling party has a documented, unsatisfactory history in contracting with DARS or with another health and human services agency;

  (2) if the contractor or potential contractor:

    (A) subcontracts any direct care services without specific authorization from DARS and HHSC; and/or

    (B) assigns or transfers the contract without prior written approval of DARS and HHSC.

(g) DARS or HHSC assigns the effective date of a contract.

(h) Goods or services purchased or reimbursed by DARS may be inspected or monitored at the discretion of DARS or HHSC.

(i) DARS or HHSC may require corrective action, suspend consumer referrals, and/or impose an adverse action against a contractor for failure to comply with the terms of the contract and/or DARS or HHSC rules, policies, and procedures.

(j) A contractor must participate in orientation relating to DARS and HHSC contract requirements before providing goods or services under a contract for the first time.

(k) A contractor shall ensure that any facility in which services are provided includes among the staff members, or shall obtain the services of, people able to communicate in the native language of applicants and consumers who have limited English speaking ability and ensure that appropriate modes of communication are used for all consumers.

(l) Contractors that provide vocational rehabilitation services shall take affirmative action to employ and advance in employment qualified individuals with disabilities.

Source Note: The provisions of this §392.305 adopted to be effective June 17, 2015, 40 TexReg 3638

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