Public Authority Services by Sourcewise

The mission of Public Authority Services is to support the independent living and well-being of consumers of the Santa Clara County IHSS program by enabling them to hire the Independent Care Providers of their choice.

What does Public Authority Services do?

The vision is to support the choice of older adults and people with disabilities to live independently for as long as possible. By providing access to caregiving assistance, IHSS consumers can maintain self-sufficiency and avoid institutionalization for as long as possible.

To achieve this vision, Public Authority Services does the following:

  • Enrolls Independent Providers into the program so they can be hired by an IHSS consumer and be paid by the IHSS program
  • Administers health and other benefits for eligible IHSS Independent Providers
  • Maintains a body of pre-screened IHSS enrolled providers to refer consumers to if they need to hire a care provider
  • Makes no-cost training available to care providers and consumers
  • Provides on-call short-term care services in emergencies to qualified IHSS consumers
  • Acts as the employer of record of independent providers for collective bargaining purposes

Looking for more information on IHSS or want to apply to receive services? You can find guidance on the County website.

When Was Public Authority Services Established?

The IHSS Public Authority is a program mandated by the State of California to enhance the services of IHSS. Each county within the State has their own locally governed branch.

The Santa Clara County branch was established by local ordinance in 1996 by the Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors, who are also the Governing Body for the program.

In 1999, management of the program was taken on by Sourcewise, Santa Clara County’s local Area Agency on Aging, and renamed Public Authority Services. The partnership between IHSS and Public Authority Services enables consumers and care providers to experience enhanced services due to the division of the workload.

To ensure consumers and providers of in-home care services are represented and advocated for by peers, the Governing Body appoints a nine-member Advisory Board. At least 50% of the Advisory Board members are current or past users of personal assistance services.

Explore additional community services and supports available from Sourcewise

Who is Sourcewise?

Since 1973, Sourcewise has provided services and support to seniors in Santa Clara County and continues to support seniors and caregivers as they expand our reach to include persons with disabilities and all adults in Santa Clara County. They aim to inform, educate, and prepare all adults within Santa Clara County to better navigate their health and life options.

As a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, Sourcewise administers key programs including Meals on Wheels, Senior Employment Services, Health Insurance Counseling and Advocacy Program, Multipurpose Senior Services Program, Public Authority Services, Caregivers Network, the community resource information and referral program Information and Awareness, and more.

Through a comprehensive network of resources, Sourcewise strives to educate, prepare, support, and advocate for all adults, their families, and their caregivers within Santa Clara County.

Learn more by visiting 

IHSS Advisory Board

The IHSS Advisory Board is a state mandated function of the Public Authority to ensure consumers and providers of in-home care services are represented and advocated for by peers.

Those who fill the nine seats on the IHSS Advisory Board are appointed by the Public Authority Services Governing Body—the Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors.

The IHSS Advisory Board studies, evaluates, and makes recommendations for changes and improvements to the IHSS system. Recommendations are presented to the Governing Body, Public Authority Services Director, and IHSS County Administration.

Current members of the IHSS Advisory Board are:

  • Emilio Carrillo
  • Joyce Felix
  • David Forderer
  • Joanna Kent
  • Mathew Lubinsky, President/Chair
  • Darcy McCann
  • Narendra Pathak
  • Terri Possley (Ex-Officio Member)
  • Janie Whiteford

IHSS Advisory Board invitation and minutes

IHSS Advisory Board meetings are open to the public and you are invited to have your voice heard at any upcoming meeting!

IHSS Advisory Board meetings are generally held on the third Tuesday of each month from 12:00 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. Exceptions to this schedule are rare but do occur.

IHSS Advisory Board Minutes and Agendas are available to review here.

If you are interested in attending a meeting of the IHSS Advisory Board, confirm the schedule and location by contacting Public Authority Services at (408) 350-3286.

Interested in becoming a member of the IHSS Advisory Board? The Santa Clara Board of Supervisors appoint new members as vacancies become available. Learn more by attending an IHSS Advisory Board meeting and speaking with a member of the Public Authority Services staff.

Policy Updates

Public Authority Services by Sourcewise recognizes the importance of accessing information on governmental policy changes that affect the IHSS population. We have gathered the following links for you to learn about updates to the IHSS program and aging and disability policies.

California Department of Social Services IHSS Program

Santa Clara County Department of Aging and Adult Services (DAAS)

California Association of Public Authorities for IHSS

California Association of Area Agencies on Aging

Disability Rights California

American Society on Aging

American Association of Retired Persons (AARP)

Service Employees International Union 2015 Contract (MOA) 2021-2024 (PDF 5.7MB)