Proposed rule changes potentially affecting several programs for Oklahomans with disabilities will be the focus of a public hearing held by the Oklahoma Department of Rehabilitation Services and the Oklahoma Rehabilitation Council.

The public is encouraged to attend the meetings, which will be held in Oklahoma City on Feb. 3, Tulsa on Feb. 4 and Lawton on Feb. 5.

Programs affected by the proposed new rules are administered by DRS and include vocational rehabilitation and employment services for Oklahomans with all types of disabilities.

DRS provides a variety of services that help individuals with disabilities achieve employment, personal independence and self-sufficiency. The Oklahoma Rehabilitation Council advises DRS on development of policies and plans for rehabilitation services.

The Majority of changes throughout involve the name changes associated with the Office of State Finance becoming Office of Management and Enterprise Services and the related integration of other agencies into OMES. Changes to Chapter 10 are to demonstrate that some determinations by DRS are not subject to the Fair Hearing Process and updating procedures for Special Services for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing. Due to state and federal audits, minor changes to the Business Enterprise policies section, Chapter 25, must be made.

The public is invited to comment on proposed rule changes.

Public hearing dates and locations are:

• Oklahoma City – Monday, Feb. 3, 4 p.m. – 6 p.m., Department of Rehabilitation Services State Office, 2nd floor conference room, 3535 NW 58th St., Oklahoma City, OK

• Tulsa – Tuesday, Feb. 4, 1 p.m. – 3 p.m., Total Source for Hearing-loss and Access, Conference Room, 8740 E. 11th, Tulsa, OK

• Lawton – Wednesday, Feb. 6, 1 p.m. – 3 p.m., Great Plains Technical Center, Bldg. 300, Room 301B, 4500 S.W. Lee Blvd., Lawton, OK

The proposed rule changes are available on the DRS website. To read them go to www.okdrs.gov.

Copies of the proposed rules may also be obtained by writing the Policy Development Unit, attention Ray Leard, Department of Rehabilitation Services, 3535 NW 58, Suite 500, Oklahoma City, OK 73112. Leard may be reached by email, releard@okdrs.gov, phone, (405) 951-3406 or (800) 845-8476. Both numbers are accessible by telecommunication devices for the deaf.

Persons unable to attend the hearings may send written comments to Ray Leard at the address above or by email to policycomment@okdrs.gov. Comments must be received no later than

Feb. 5, 2014.