Partnership and NASCSP Host ROMA Meeting
September 14, 2016
Dear Community Action Colleagues:
As you know, ROMA Next Generation is currently in between OMB Comment periods. The 60-day comment window closed August 15th and the final 30-day comment window is not yet open. During this time, the Federal Office of Community Services and NASCSP are reviewing the comments received from local agencies, state CSBG Offices, national partners, and others as they consider modifications for the package that will be released for final comment this fall.

To help the us prepare for the 30-day comment window and to provide OCS with information on possible solutions to the challenges noted in the August feedback, the Community Action Partnership and NASCSP have invited a small group of ROMA Practitioners to DC next week to strategize about possible solutions.
This group of ROMA Practitioners are experienced and well-versed in both the current ROMA system (from assessment to data analysis) as well as ROMA Next Generation. The group was kept small given time, resources, and capacity issues. We know there are many in the Network who fit this description and had we been able, this group would have been larger. Note that all the national partner organizations have been invited as have a mix of local agencies, State Associations, and State CSBG offices. OCS will also be attending.  The meeting will be facilitated by Christine Westerlund from the Illinois Association of Community Acton Agencies, a Certified ROMA Trainer. A full list of attendees is included below. 
As you may recall, the Partnership recommended a meeting of ROMA experts in its April 2016 ROMA Next Gen comment letter at the close of the informal comment period this spring to ensure the final product was informed by local users and implementers of ROMA. While this meeting is late in the game, we are glad we can bring this group together in partnership with NASCSP to look at ROMA Next Gen from a practical and user-focused perspective.
Following this meeting, we will provide an update and summary of the meeting to the Community Action Network and to OCS. We hope the results of this meeting will help us all prepare to respond to the 30-day comment period this fall.
After three years of work, ROMA Next Generation is preparing to provide us with final recommendations for comment; we see this Practitioner meeting as a strong last push to mpact the final product in a way that helps meet the needs and capacities of the Network.
Note, we have been cc'd on many comments submitted to OCS during the 60-day comment period, thank you. If you have not sent us your comments, we'd like to read them to assess the feedback for potential ideas and solutions that may have been submitted. If you are willing to share, you can send them to me at
Thank you for your continued attention to ROMA Next Generation and I look forward to sharing the results of this meeting with you soon.
Denise Harlow, CEO
Community Action Partnership
Meeting Attendees:
Local CAAs:
  •          Maureen Abbott, NY
  •          Lil Dupree, VA
  •          Robert Ellis, CA
  •          Dana Jones, DC
  •          Jim Stark, PA
  •          Debbie Markman, MO
  •          Patsy Mbughuni-WI
  •          Daniel Ofori-Addo-DC
  •          Kris Rowe, AL
  •          Maribeth Schneber-Rhemrev, KY
  •          Chris Seiber, MA
  •          Erin Trenbeath-Murray, UT
  •          Aaron Wicks, NY
 State Associations:
  •          Tiffany Keimig, IA
  •          Jim Schuyler, VA
  •          Josh Summer, OH
 State CSBG Offices:
  •          Sylmia Britt, CA
  •          Freeman Denton, NC
  •          Sarah Phillips, VT
  •          Laura Saintey, TX
 National Partners
  •          Jeannie Chaffin, OCS
  •          Seth Hassett, OCS
  •          Kate Blunt, Consultant for OCS
  •          Jenae Bjelland, NASCSP
  •          Jackie Orr, NASCSP
  •          Tara Clark, NCAF
  •          Barbara Mooney, ANCRT
  •          Jarle Crocker, CAP
  •          Denise Harlow, CAP
 Facilitator: Christine Westerlund, Illinois Association of Community Action Agencies