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Guidelines for Financial Support

  1. The Iowa Department for the Blind will support individuals to attend National Consumer Conventions and other professional conferences when each of the following criteria are met:
    a. the appropriate service and purpose is defined as part of the IPE
    b. attendance is appropriate and necessary for the individual to meet their employment goal.
    c. all requests for authorization or reimbursement are made prior to the service being delivered or purchased.

  2. IDB will consider reimbursement for the following expenses:
    a. Convention or conference registration.
    b. Hotel (at convention/conference single rate); if sharing a hotel room with other individuals, the reimbursed rate would be for the client only.
    c. Round trip flight with one bag (economy class). If ground transportation is more economical and appropriate, then this would be reimbursed at approved State of Iowa rates.
    d. Transportation to and from the airport to the hotel (if no complementary shuttle service is provided by the convention/conference hotel); the most economical transportation must be used, this is typically a shuttle service from the airport; if sharing transportation with other individuals, the reimbursed rate would be for the client only.

  3. All rules regarding authorizations must be followed and any questions should be directed to the VR counselor.

  4. All clients must apply for whatever assistance is available through the sponsoring organization as this is a comparable benefit. This information must be provided to the VR counselor.

  5. Payments will be made as reimbursements to clients after counselor receives applicable receipts and following the service or conference occurring.

  6. Client is responsible for own food costs including banquets.

  7. One parent or legal guardian will be covered only if the client is a minor.

  8. Proper itemized and original receipts are required for reimbursement.

  9. Client must submit copy of conference /convention agenda and report as to the benefit of attending the conference/convention. Failure to complete the report may affect future funding for this type of event.

  10. IDB will not generally sponsor attendance at more than two conventions or conferences in the same calendar year.

  11. All exceptions require supervisor approval.

  12. Any client is welcome to apply for a loan to attend a consumer convention from the Gifts & Bequests fund. All such requests must be submitted no less than one month prior to the conference or convention being requested.