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in significant delays in getting infants and toddlers with disabilities the early intervention services they need.

These commenters argued that proposed §303.320(e)(ii),

which stated that lead agencies must obtain parental consent as soon as possible once a child is referred to a lead agency, would be an inadequate protection if adopted because it would allow an undetermined and unregulated

period of time between the child’s referral and parental

consent, and could delay the completion of initial evaluations, initial assessments, and initial IFSP meetings. These commenters expressed concern that proposed

§303.320(e) would result in less accountability for lead

agencies because, under that provision, the lead agencies could control--to a large extent--when they obtained parental consent for evaluation and thus when the 45-day timeline would commence.

These commenters further argued that the Department

should not adopt the timeline in proposed §303.320(e) and

that it should instead retain the timeline reflected in

current §303.322(e), which requires the public agency to

complete the evaluation and assessment activities and hold an IFSP meeting within 45 days from the date the public

agency receives the child’s referral. For these

commenters, beginning the 45-day timeline from the date the