Thursday, February 26, 2009

Entrepreneurial Ventures for the Arts Training

The New York Council of Nonprofits (formerly the Council of Community Services of New York State, Inc.) will offer Entrepreneurial Ventures for the Arts in 2009. This specialized training, supported in part by the New York State Council on the Arts, will address the interests and markets of arts organizations in exploring alternative revenue generating activities. With funding cuts, decreasing donations, and growing economic challenges, the need is greater than ever to develop other sources of unrestricted operating revenue for arts organizations. An entrepreneurial venture takes calculated risk based on sound facts and adherence to rules and regulations, and this two-day session can help organizations figure out the feasibility and keys to success in undertaking such ventures.

Unlike traditional social entrepreneurship trainings, this curricula will include but extend beyond business planning and include expert assistance and advice on legal and tax related matters. This training course is a highly interactive immersion into the world of innovation and revenue generation. Participants learn through instructional and peer-learning experiences how to develop and practically apply "real world" elements of entrepreneurial ventures to their organization, including strategies on developing board understanding and support for such ventures. At the conclusion of the program, participants will be invited to submit a business venture plan for development, which will be reviewed and given constructive feedback.

Entrepreneurial Ventures for the Arts will be offered on two dates this year. The first program will be May 7 and 8 at the Support Center for Nonprofit Management in New York City. The second program will be held July 9 and 10 in Albany at the Council of Community Services of New York State. For more information and registration, click NYC or Albany. You can also call 1-800-515-5012 ext 141.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Special Reports on Economic Stimulus & Recovery

The National Council of Nonprofits is proud to openly share this evolving series of Special Reports about our nation’s economic recovery, including analysis of the American Recovery & Reinvestment Act of 2009 (commonly referred to as the economic stimulus bill) that President Obama signed into law on February 17, 2009.

  • Nonprofit Grant Opportunities Special Report, Volume I (issued February 23, 2009) This core report provides an overview of this historic piece of legislation and identifies key provisions that lend themselves to potential grant opportunities for some nonprofits
  • Stimulus Grant Tips and Thoughts Special Report, Volume II (issued February 24, 2009) This report offers tips for those thinking about applying for a stimulus-funded grant.
  • Whether and How States Are Accepting & Distributing Federal Stimulus Funds Special Report, Volume III – (issued February 25, 2009) This report reviews how various states have indicated they will handle the federal funds.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Study shows nonprofits contribute significantly to economy

The Philanthropy Journal related a study about New Hampshire nonprofits, which revealed that nonprofits make up a critical sector, contributing significantly to the state's revenue, job market and quality of life. The study, funded by Bank of America, included the following highlights:
  • The state's 7,800 nonprofits contribute $8.3 billion to the state's economy annually, representing 14.5 percent of gross state product., says the report by the New Hampshire Center for Nonprofits.
  • One in eight workers in the state are employed by a nonprofit, the report says, and eight in 10 residents have donated money to a nonprofit.
  • In 2007, 334,000 people in the state volunteered a combined 40.4 million hours with a nonprofit, averaging 120 hours a year for each volunteer.

This is very helpful information, especially as the Oneida and Herkimer ED Group prepares to examine their own economic impact. Thank you to Peggy O'Shea, President & CEO at The Community Foundation Of Herkimer & Oneida Counties, Inc for passing this info on.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Grants available to Oneida and Herkimer nonprofits

The Upstate Student Philanthropy Council, a student-run foundation at Colgate University, announces a Request for Proposals to area non-profits and public for projects that strengthen community engagement, foster cultural heritage and the arts, and address basic and societal needs through creative educational initiatives. Grant applications will be accepted for requests from $1,000 to $6,000 for projects undertaken during 2009-2010. The grant deadline is March 2, 2009. Grant guidelines and the application can be found at the Upstate Institute web site $10,000 is available to provide grants to area non-profit organizations whose service area should focus primarily in one or more of the following central Upstate New York counties: Broome, Chenango, Fulton, Herkimer, Madison, Montgomery, Oneida, Otsego, and Schoharie.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Community Action expands outreach

The OD featured a guest commentary about Mohawk Valley Community Action Agency by Executive Director Amy Turner. Read about it here.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

State cabinet to oversee distribution of federal recovery funds

Gov. David Paterson today announced the creation of a special cabinet to manage projects financed through the upcoming federal economic stimulus package.

The cabinet will work to make sure federal dollars are distributed equally to all parts of New York. The group is also responsible for resolving problems, such as permits or regulatory approvals, so projects can move forward. Read more here.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

March 25th Program Focuses on Economic Impact

Economics of Nonprofits: The Impact of Nonprofit Businesses on the Local Economy
The first program, set for March 25th at 8:30am, will focus on nonprofit economic impact. The program will feature a panel made up of various economic agencies in the region answering questions submitted by nonprofit directors. In preparation for this program, a survey capturing nonprofit economic info will be circulated.

Date: Wednesday, March 25th, 2009
Time: 8:30am - 10:30am
Cost: $5.00 for breakfast
Rescue Mission
Rescue Mission Chapel
201 Rutger Street
Utica, NY 13501

Register Here

Friday, February 6, 2009

ED Group 2009 Theme: Economics of Nonprofits

The Steering Committee meeting was held on Wednesday, February 4th and was hosted by the Mohawk Valley Community Action Agency. It was attended by: Rev. Bill Dodge, Rescue Mission; Amy Turner, MVCAA; Lorraine Kinney-Kitchen, Mid-York Child Care Coordinating Council, Inc.; and Cornelia Brown, MAMI Interpreters.

Discussed program ideas and dates for the year. The program dates are:
Wed, March 25th- 8:30am
Wed, June 24th- 12:00pm
Wed, Sept 23rd- 8:30am
Wed, Dec 2nd- 12:00pm

The program theme for the year will be: "Economics of Nonprofits"
The first program, set for March, will be titled: "The Impact of Nonprofit Businesses on the Local Economy." The program will feature a panel discussion. The possible panelists were discussed: Mohawk Valley Edge, Genesis, Community Foundation of Herkimer and Oneida Counties, Work Force Development (Dave M. and Alice S), Mohawk Valley Chamber (Frank Alias), Human Technologies Corp (Rick Sebestian), UCP (Lou Tean).

An economic impact survey will be implemented to collect info from the community, and suggested panel questions will also be collected.

The program goals are: demonstrate nonprofit impact on community; build bridges with economic experts and officials; be recognized as resoures; learn how to operate as better businesses; build awareness; advocate for training support

Possible panel questions:
What are your perceptions?
Where do nonprofits fit in?
How build a relationship?
How is the community changing and how should nonprofits respond?

Possible questions for economic impact survey:
1) Name of Nonprofit
2) Name of Executive
3) Type of organization (Arts and Culture, Museum, Social and Human Service, Education, Religious or faith based, etc)
4) Total number of people who were employed on your payroll during the fiscal year
5) Business dollars your organization spent in this region. This information should be available from your accounts payable or check register. Every dollar you spent to purchase goods or services has a compounded positive impact on the local economy.
6) Total payroll taxes generated (State and Federal)
7) Other taxes collected (Sales tax as an example)

Have other suggested questions? Let us know. Feel free to share you input on any other details too.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Budget Cuts To Be Enacted

On Tuesday, January 27, Governor Paterson, Speaker Silver and Majority Leader Smith announced that the legislature would vote next week on a Deficit Reduction Plan (DRP) for the current fiscal year (ending March 31, 2009). The legislation (A.163/S.250) identifies programs that will be cut by nearly 50%. These include child care programs, HIV/AIDS programs, services for older adults, services for runaway and homeless youth, after school programs, newborn home visiting, and funds for CUNY.

Managing in a downturn

In December 2008, Fiscal Management Associates (FMA) and the Nonprofit Finance Fund (NFF) joined together to present a workshop that offered nonprofit leaders concrete tools to lead their organizations in response to the current ecnomic challenges. With the support of The Clark, Robin Hood, and Tiger foundations, the tools and presentation from this program are available online here. The link offers a 90 minute webinar and powerpoint and various tools.

Topics include:

  • How the current market environment will affect nonprofits
  • Practical scenario planning and modeling: how to develop smart, strategic responses
  • Recognizing the hidden opportunities to strengthen your standing
  • Revenue and expense considerations
  • Cash flow management and managing credit
  • Role of the Executive Director and Board in leading the organization through a downturn

The link provides assessment tools and checklists to keep you grounded during crisis periods. Also included is a list of cost reduction strategies.

Available tools include:

  • Recession Checklist
  • Recession Tips
  • Cash Flow template
  • Financial Matters for Bankers
  • Reserve Options
  • Scenario Planning Model
  • Cost Reduction Strategies
  • Cost Containment Discussion
  • Scenario Planning Process
  • Strategic Alliances Checklist

NYS WARN Act Impacts Nonprofits

Although the Federal WARN (Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification) Act has been in effect for several years, New York State has now enacted its own version of the employee protection notification scheme. The New York State version imposes more stringent requirements, bringing far more employers under the purview of this legislation that the Federal law. The effect is that where many non-profits would never have been affected by the Federal legislation, many will come under the auspices of the New York State version. Read more here about the WARN Act and its impact on your nonprofit if you have 50 or more employees.

This policy update is provided by Kevin M. Stadelmaier, Esq, Legal Advisor, New York Council of Nonprofits (fomerly CCSNYS, Inc.), Legal Accountability and Compliance Services, Western New York Regional Office. Should you have further questions or concerns relevant to the requirements of this New Act, do not hesitate to contact Kevin at (716) 241-5010 x170 or by email.