Tompkins County has a long tradition of established policies and procedures that underscore the importance of fair standards and stewardship in governmental operations. The County’s comprehensive Compliance Program was established in 2011 to mitigate risk, assure quality, and improve the performance of internal monitoring systems. The County Compliance Officer has executive oversight of the County Compliance Program, and a County Compliance Committee works to ensure compliance across all 27 of the County’s departments.
An essential component of the County Compliance Program is the County’s Title VI Program, which identifies and eliminates discrimination in the provision of County programs, activities, and services on the basis of race, color, national origin, disability, and any other protected characteristic. Under the Title VI Program, the County works to ensure full and equal access for persons with disabilities as outlined in the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). In particular, the County endeavors to ensure physical accessibility by creating and maintaining an ADA Transition Plan.
The ADA Transition Plan reflects Tompkins County government’s long-term commitment to ADA compliance. The purpose of this Plan is to identify structural barriers to its public facilities and, where structurally feasible, schedule and implement improvements in order to remove or mitigate the impact of those barriers.
Creating the ADA Transition Plan
To create and maintain an ADA Transition Plan, the County does the following:
1) Identify structural barriers in County Government facilities that limit access to programs, activities, or services by individuals with disabilities;
2) Propose methods to remove barriers limiting accessibility;
3) Create a schedule for completion of remediation steps to achieve accessibility; and
4) Designate an official responsible for the plan's implementation.
The ADA Transition Plan is revised and updated as the steps of the Plan are completed. Each step is described in more detail below.
Identification of Structural Barriers in County Government Facilities
The Department of Facilities has created accessibility evaluation forms that are used to identify structural barriers in County Government facilities and access points. The forms were adapted from the “ADA Checklist for Existing Facilities” created by the Institute for Human Centered Design. The ADA Checklist is based on the 2010 ADA Standards for Accessible Design. The ADA Checklist focuses on four priority areas:
Priority 1 – Approach & Entrance: An accessible route from site arrival and an accessible entrance should be provided for everyone.
Priority 2 – Access to Goods & Services: The layout of the building should allow people with disabilities to obtain goods and services and to participate in activities without assistance.
Priority 3 – Toilet Rooms: When toilet rooms are open to the public they should be accessible to people with disabilities.
Priority 4 – Additional Access: Amenities such as drinking fountains and public telephones should be accessible to people with disabilities.
The Department of Facilities conducts accessibility evaluations of facilities and access points where County services are delivered:
Sidewalks, crosswalks, and curb ramps that provide direct entry to buildings;
Publicly accessible buildings; and
Parking lots serving publicly accessible buildings.
Methods and Schedule to Remove Barriers
Having evaluated all facilities and access points, the Department of Facilities recommends methods to correct any physical barriers or compliance issues. The Department also creates a schedule for remediation based on the priorities listed above. The Department updates the Transition Plan quarterly as improvements are completed.
Reporting an ADA Accessibility Concern
To report a potential concern regarding ADA accessibility to County facilities, please contact the County Compliance Officer, Department of County Administration at (607) 274-5551.
ADA Transition Plans 2017