Standards for public agencies

2020 Edition

Administrative and Service Environment (PA-ASE) 4: Facility Safety and Maintenance

The agency's facilities and grounds are safely maintained and are routinely monitored. 
2020 Edition




 The agency’s administrative and service environments are respectful, safe, and accessible and contribute to agency effectiveness.
Full Implementation, Outstanding Performance
A rating of (1) indicates that the agency's practices fully meet the standard and reflect a high level of capacity.  
  • All elements or requirements outlined in the standard are evident in practice, with rare or no exceptions: exceptions do not impact service quality or agency performance. 
Substantial Implementation, Good Performance
A rating of (2) indicates that an agency's infrastructure and practices are basically sound but there is room for improvement.
  • The majority of the standards requirements have been met and the basic framework required by the standard has been implemented. 
  • Minor inconsistencies and not yet fully developed practices are noted; however, these do not significantly impact service quality or agency performance.

Partial Implementation, Concerning Performance
A rating of (3) indicates that the agency's observed infrastructure and/or practices require significant improvement.  

  • The agency has not implemented the basic framework of the standard but instead has in place only part of this framework.  
  • Omissions or exceptions to the practices outlined in the standard occur regularly, or practices are implemented in a cursory or haphazard manner.  
  • Service quality or agency functioning may be compromised.  
  • Capacity is at a basic level.
Unsatisfactory Implementation or Performance
A rating of (4) indicates that implementation of the standard is minimal or there is no evidence of implementation at all.  
  • The agency’s observed administration and management infrastructure and practices are weak or non-existent; or show signs of neglect, stagnation, or deterioration.
Self-Study EvidenceOn-Site EvidenceOn-Site Activities
County/Municipality Administered Agency, State Administered Agency (Central Office), or other Public Entity
  • Facility maintenance procedures
  • Procedures for vehicle use including license validation, insurance coverage expectations, etc. 
State Administered Agency (Regional Office)
  • No Self-Study Evidence
All Agencies
  • Monthly maintenance inspection reports for the prior six months
  • Documentation of corrective action where indicated
  • Documentation of license, driving records, and insurance validation
  • Contracts, including safety expectations, with any outside transportation providers, if applicable
  • Contracts/agreements with any host sites 
All Agencies
  • Interviews may include:
    1. Relevant personnel
  • Observe facility
  • Observe vehicles

Fundamental Practice

PA-ASE 4.01

All facilities in which the agency operates are properly maintained through:
  1. monthly inspections to ensure the agency’s facilities are safe and heating, lighting, and other systems are functioning properly;
  2. preventive maintenance by a qualified professional; and
  3. quick responses to emergency maintenance issues and potentially hazardous conditions.


If the agency is a tenant in its facilities, some or all of the above activities may be conducted by the landlord. In such instances, the agency must be able to demonstrate that it monitors and documents the completion of elements (a) through (c) to provide a safe environment for people to work and receive services.
Examples: “Emergency maintenance issues” can include: overflowing toilets, flooded basements, defective heating systems, and other situations that can damage property, pose a threat to personnel and service recipients, or interfere with service delivery. 

Examples of “hazardous conditions” include: uncovered electrical outlets; improper storage of cleaning supplies and other hazardous materials; unsecured floor coverings or equipment; stairs without handrails; harmful water temperatures; inadequate lighting, improper ventilation, uncomfortable room temperature; unscreened areas or unmarked glass doors; broken or malfunctioning tools or equipment, including electrical appliances, and unsafe drinking water.
Note: Please see the Facility Observation Checklist for additional guidance on this standard.

Fundamental Practice

PA-ASE 4.02

An agency that permits or requires the use of agency- or privately-owned vehicles to transport service recipients requires:
  1. the use of age-appropriate passenger restraint systems in accordance with applicable state and local regulations; 
  2. adequate passenger supervision, as mandated by statute or regulation; 
  3. proper maintenance of agency-owned vehicles; 
  4. current registration and inspection of vehicles; 
  5. annual validation of licenses and driving records; and 
  6. motor vehicle insurance.


When state inspection is not available (d), the agency should establish alternate procedures for verifying proper maintenance of both privately- and agency-owned vehicles.


This standard does not apply to vehicles owned by resource families, which are covered by PA-CFS 23.05.


When the agency has a contract with an outside transportation provider, it must include relevant safety expectations in the contract.
NA The agency does not permit or require transporting service recipients in agency- or privately-owned vehicles.
Note: Please see the Facility Observation Checklist for additional guidance on this standard.

PA-ASE 4.03

When services are offered on a consistent and ongoing basis, in a location that is not owned or leased by the agency, prior to using the facility the agency develops a memorandum of understanding (MOU) or a contractual agreement with the host that includes:
  1. space and equipment needs;
  2. health and safety expectations; and
  3. each group's responsibility for cleaning, maintenance, liability risk, and other costs (e.g., utilities, insurance, and repairs).
NA The agency does not offer services on a consistent and ongoing basis at locations it does not own or lease.