WIOA Title I COVID-19 Partners Information

Frequently asked questions about the COVID-19 Coronavirus and Wisconsin's WIOA Title I Program for local Workforce Development Boards and service providers on the following topics:

Partners can submit questions to DETWIOAAnalysts@dwd.wisconsin.gov.

The U.S. Department of Labor has also published a list of frequently asked questions about COVID-19 and WIOA and related programs.

Eligible Training Programs

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Yes. It is considered the same training program; the institution is simply using a different method to deliver the curriculum. (3/26/2020)

Supporting Technology Needs

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Yes. Depending on the participant, you may use (a) Adult, Dislocated Worker, and/or Youth formula funds, (b) RR additional assistance grant funds, and/or (c) Retail DWG funds to provide program-funded supportive services to WIOA Title I participants. Program-funded supportive services can include school supplies. If a training institution now requires students to take courses online and the participant does not have the necessary items to do so (e.g., a computer, internet access, webcam, etc.) those items constitute school supplies. Costs for program-funded supportive services must be reasonable. For the definition of "reasonable," see 8.6.2 in the online policy manual.

No matter what funding source(s) you're using to cover the costs, make sure to include documentation in the case file (e.g., ASSET case note) that classes are now online due to COVID-19 and school supplies (whatever they may be) were needed to enable the participant to continue with the training program. (3/26/2020)

All of the local WDBs have existing policy and procedures in place to allow for additional program-funded supportive services on a case-by-case basis through exception policies. You should apply those to the current situation. (3/26/2020)

Please note, if you are using a separate supportive services policy for the Retail DWG and that policy does not cover – or allow the flexibility to cover – school supplies for online training, DWD-DET is allowing the local WDB the opportunity to revise its policy as needed and retroactively date that policy to a date on or after March 12, 2020 (i.e., the date Governor Evers declared a statewide public health emergency for the COVID-19 coronavirus). Because of the unanticipated consequences this pandemic is having on program participants, DWD-DET is allowing local WDBs this one-time flexibility to retroactively date any separate supportive services policies for this grant. (3/27/2020)

Yes. The purchase of additional supplies for board staff and service provider staff to work remotely is an allowable expense. Per 2 CFR § 200.453 of the Uniform Guidance, costs incurred for materials and supplies necessary to carry out a federal award are allowable. The purchase should be documented, allowable, and cost-allocated appropriately. These supplies will be considered a small purchase and a formal procurement is not necessary. (3/26/2020)

Rapid Response

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No. Until further notice, DWD-DET will not be accepting any new applications; however, DWD-DET will continue to accept modifications to existing RR-funded grants. (4/04/2020)

No. DWD-DET has instructed local rapid response teams not to provide any in-person employer or worker services until DET instructs otherwise. (3/20/2020)

No. Until further notice, DWD-DET does not expect local rapid response teams to meet the requirements for minimum level of services outlined in the Annual Allotment Grant Agreements. (4/06/20)

No. Unfortunately, DWD-DET cannot request UI Scans right now. As you know, the UI Division is seeing an unprecedented number of claims in light of the COVID-19 pandemic and is dealing with the overwhelming volume of new claimants. When the UI Division has more capacity, DET can request UI scans again; however, we are unsure when that will be. (4/06/2020)

No. DWD-DET is asking local rapid response teams to refrain from developing their own surveys using 3rd party applications (SurveyMonkey / Google Docs) due to the amount of PII (personally identifiable information) we typically collect. (3/20/2020)

Retail Dislocated Worker Grant (DWG) Program

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No. Unfortunately, DWD-DET cannot request UI Scans right now. As you know, the UI Division is seeing an unprecedented number of claims in light of the COVID-19 pandemic and is dealing with the overwhelming volume of new claimants. When the UI Division has more capacity, DET can request UI scans again; however, we are unsure when that will be. (3/27/2020)

Maybe. DWD-DET will add this to the list of rapid response items we're currently reviewing. However, DWD-DET has significant concern that the remaining funding is not nearly adequate to address the high volume of retail-related layoffs that have occurred due to the COVID-19 public health emergency. Promoting a very limited opportunity on JCW (in terms of funds and participating WDAs) may not be the best approach at this time.

Perhaps rather than recruit new participants, project operators should address current participants' supportive service needs, which may now include school supplies for online-only classes. The higher cap for supportive services under this grant could really help participants whose households are now experiencing even more disruption because of the COVID-19 public health emergency. (3/27/2020)

DWD-DET learned on March 27 that DOL granted the no-cost extension, thereby extending the Retail DWG through September 30, 2021. (3/27/2020)

DWD-DET agrees with the tech colleges that it is too early to tell whether classes will be available for the summer and fall terms. At this juncture, we are not changing the approach to this grant and we do not recommend changing your participants' program goals / employment plans. Since the Retail DWG has been extended for a year, there is additional time for enrollment in training before the end of the grant. Additionally, the requirement that career services expenditures must be 25% or less of total grant expenditures is still in effect. However, we do very much encourage funding supportive services under this grant. (3/27/2020)

DWD-DET recommends contacting the training providers to see if they have any suggestions to help participants cope with the change in class delivery from in-person to online. We also recommend that career planners guide individual participants to reach out to their instructors if they are having difficulty transitioning to online learning. Unfortunately, if a participant feels unable to continue with online classes, she or he will likely have to withdraw from the class(es) or program, depending on the training provider's policies. (3/27/2020)

Wisconsin COVID-19 Disaster Recovery NDWG (National Dislocated Worker Grant) – Application & Planning

Models of Service Delivery

Participant Compensation

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Yes, the worksite employer would have to research and find similar occupations and pay them the rate equal to or more than the higher of the federal, state or local wage. The local WDB can research (LMI) to locate a comparable occupation that performs distribution. (4/1/2020)

The local WDB would follow its internal policy when it comes to contracting out services. Traditionally, the local WDB would enter into an agreement with the worksite employer detailing the roles and responsibilities in addition to providing funds for those activities. No, it is not like an OJT, it is a contract agreement. (4/1/2020)

Typically, the grant pays 100% of the participants' disaster relief employment. (4/1/2020)

Allowable Activities