Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Local impact from proposed state budget

Posted Mar 27, 2012 @ 08:08 PM
Last update Mar 28, 2012 @ 03:48 AM
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo and the state's top legislative leaders say they've agreed on their second straight on-time budget. Here's how the plan could affect the area:
Griffiss cuts: $5 million statewide to protect the state's military assets as the federal government looks to cut defense spending. Cuomo initially proposed spending just $500,000 on defending the installations, but state legislators, including Assemblyman Anthony Brindisi, D-Utica, and state Sen. Joseph Griffo, R-Rome, pushed for the higher amount. Defense cuts are looming, including a possible Base Realignment and Closure round in 2015.
SUNYIT: $500,000 for SUNYIT for additional staff to aid in the development of science, technology, engineering and math fields, including nanotechnology. In 2009, state officials announced that SUNYIT would become home to a $45 million state-of-the-art nanotechnology complex that would attract private sector companies and researchers.
Gambling: Earlier this month, the Legislature approved a constitutional amendment to allow seven casinos in the state. The Legislature must pass the amendment a second time in its next session, and it must go to a public referendum to become law. The legislation does not specify where the casinos would be located, but officials from Vernon Downs have long expressed an interest in having one at the financially struggling track. The Oneida Indian Nation, which operates Turning Stone Resort Casino, has predicted a possible oversaturation in the gaming market.
DOT: The regional office of the state Department of Transportation in the State Office Building in Utica will not be closed. The move would have cost the area 200 jobs.
Legislative districts: As the governor and the Legislature negotiated the budget, the approval of the state's Assembly and Senate districts entered into the mix. In the final maps, Oneida County remains wholly within one state Senate district, but is carved into five Assembly districts.
Education: Cuomo and the legislative leaders agreed to take half of Cuomo's proposed $250 million in competitive grant funds and give it directly to school districts using the “neediest schools first” formula used for the rest of the $805 million aid increase to schools. Both houses of the Legislature had proposed diverting $200 million to low income and rural school districts. School districts in the process of finalizing their budgets will be interested in learning how much of that $125 million their schools will get. All of the aid is contingent on districts and unions agreeing on the state's teacher evaluation system by Jan. 2013.

Original article can be found here:

Building Sustainability, Increasing Impact: An R&D Approach to Evaluation

 Grantmakers Forum of New York

Join us for a…
Philanthropy Forum
Building Sustainability, Increasing Impact:
An R&D approach to evaluation

May 15, 2012, 1:00-4:00pm
M&T Ballroom, Memorial Art Gallery, 500 University Ave, Rochester 14607

Traditional evaluation—assessing services after the fact—doesn't always help those who design and implement the programs that assist community residents. A Research and Development (R&D) approach to evaluation helps leaders rethink and revamp programs to continually improve the delivery and direct benefits of services to the people who need them. By engaging in learning via R&D practices, nonprofit leaders
·  gain a more realistic means for assessing the cost of success,
·  grow services to reach more who need them,
·  demonstrate to funders where successes really occurred and where the impact of their grant dollars can be expanded.
And nonprofit organizations whose leaders engage in R&D behaviors are nearly twice as likely to be sustainable and grow as those who don’t.

Peter York is Senior Partner and Director of Research, TCC Group, a consulting  firm with clients in the nonprofit, public, and private sector. He is an acknowledged expert in designing learning systems for organizations and collaboratives. York is an authority in the field of capacity building, including studying, designing, implementing, and evaluating the impact of investments made in nonprofit organizational capacity building, community building, and policy/advocacy initiatives. York earned a BA from Purdue University, a Master's Degree in Social Service Administration, and "all but dissertation" in his Ph.D. work at Case Western Reserve University's Mandel School of Applied Social Sciences.

Open to all nonprofit organizations and the public. Parking Available.  Fee: $40 first registration, $25 each additional registration from same organization.

Registration form here. (PDF Form attached also)

Sponsored by

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Sculpture Space Executive Director Job Description/Application Requirements

12 Gates Street, Utica NY 13502

Sculpture Space is an international arts residency program that provides specialized studio workspace for professional artists whose focus is sculpture. We are dedicated to the belief that art -- particularly sculpture -- has the power to strengthen our understanding of the world around us. Committed to providing artists with the time and resources to fully explore their creative potential, Sculpture Space seeks to expand public awareness of and support for contemporary art by creating opportunities for artists to share their work with the community through exhibitions, lectures, and educational outreach.

Position Summary:
The Executive Director: provides overall leadership, vision, and direction to the organization; oversees all administrative and artistic functions; and ensures responsible fiscal and legal administration of Sculpture Space.

The Executive Director reports to a Board of Directors comprised of individuals with diverse interests and areas of expertise. Working closely with the Board, the Director will establish strategic goals for the future of the organization, set priorities, and successfully implement its projects, initiatives, and mission. The Director attends and participates in regular meetings of the Board, Executive Committee, and Board Sub-Committees, as well as submits monthly activity reports and coordinates board development as needed.

Responsibilities for day-to-day organizational management include: supervision of a staff of two; management of the artists’ residency program; oversight of the studio, equipment, grounds, and residential facility; development and execution of the annual budget; marketing and public relations; and promotion of a positive and increased presence in the local, national, and international communities. Salary range based on experience: $40,000 to $60,000 plus benefits.

Major Responsibilities:
Artist Relations
Sculpture Space accepts approximately 20 artists annually for eight-week residencies. The Executive Director supports all aspects of the resident experience, including: working to recruit, review, and accept artists for residencies; ensuring new artist orientation to the facilities and community; assisting artists throughout their residencies with needs related to housing, food, supplies, transportation, etc.; coordinating artist events that engage the community in the creative process, including Works-In-Progress and Behind-The-Scenes receptions; and working to promote alumni artist engagement in Sculpture Space activities, including fund raising.

The Executive Director: develops and oversees the annual operations budget; works closely with Board and Finance Committee members to ensure fiscal sustainability; provides the Board with regular communications regarding the organization’s overall fiscal well-being and timely projections regarding budget surpluses and shortfalls; and exhibits an understanding of routine financial procedures and cash flow management, as well as the ability to project fiscal challenges and opportunities.

Community Outreach
The Executive Director develops and implements an annual marketing plan and calendar; writes and oversees production of news releases, newsletters, annual reports, invitations, programs, etc.; arranges speaking engagements and facility tours for external organizations; oversees the organization’s web site; fosters relations with representatives of local, state, and federal government; and serves as the organization’s spokesperson.

The Executive Director oversees fundraising activities related to maintaining and expanding Sculpture Space programs, including: planning and working with a Development Committee to implement the Annual Campaign; managing all aspects of grant writing, including identification of grant opportunities, submission of proposals, and compliance/reporting; and working with Board and Committee members to plan and carry out special events. The Executive Director is also responsible for exploring and developing new sources of revenue, and the identification and cultivation of new and existing donors, including alumni artists.

Education and Experience:
Bachelor’s Degree required, with minimum of 2-5 years of arts and/or non-profit administration including a successful record of fundraising and budget oversight.

Specific Skills/Abilities:
• Knowledge of the visual arts;
• Talented communicator, with well-developed writing and public speaking skills;
• Proven success in fundraising, grant writing, and membership development;
• Marketing, PR, and community relations abilities that illustrate creative thinking, community awareness, and arts outreach;
• Adept at working with a Board of Directors, committees, volunteers, local and national arts organizations, community members, and political representatives;
• Management and organizational skills including the ability to recruit, manage, and mentor a dedicated staff and volunteer base;
• Ability to prioritize and willingness to delegate;
• Outgoing and diplomatic personality, sense of humor, leadership skills, and the ability to work with and attract the participation of diverse communities;
• Computer proficiencies in word processing, spreadsheet/database management, desktop publishing, and familiarity with web site management;
• Flexibility to attend some evening and weekend events, including meetings, receptions, and fund raising functions;
• Valid driver’s license.
Essential Duties: (in accordance with ADA)
The functions of this position are usually performed sitting, but may require some amount of standing, as well as stooping, kneeling, bending, crouching, lifting, walking, carrying and other movements. Daily tasks involving working on a computer keyboard, calculator, etc. require extensive wrist and hand movement. All individuals are required to be able to perform these movements without significant risk of injury to themselves or others, or to otherwise demonstrate or explain how they can perform the essential functions listed above.

Submission: Search begins March 2012 and will continue until a candidate is selected. Send letter, resume, three references, & writing samples to Application questions may be directed to the same. For more information, visit, About Us.

Note: The Sculpture Space Board of Directors reserves the right to change or reassign job duties or combine positions at anytime. Employees of Sculpture Space serve at the will of the Board of Directors.

Mohawk Valley Latino Association Announces Membership Meeting March 31

Mohawk Valley Latino Association Announces

Utica, New York - March 19, 2012 -
Who: The Mohawk Valley Latino Association, Inc. (MVLA)

What: Junta General de Miembros/ General Membership Meeting ~ 2012

Where: St. Francis de Sales Auditorium, 309 Genesee Street, Utica, NY 13501

When: Sabado, 31 de Marzo 2012 / Saturday, March 31, 2012

Time: 3:00 PM - 6:00 PM

Free Food and Beverage for all attendees, fun activities for the children. Come join us as we welcome Ladan Alomar, Executive Director of Centro Civico of Amsterdam and Albany, NY. We encourage your attendance and participation. Please feel free to bring a friend or family member along. Our meetings are informational, full of energy, ideas, and most importantly very beneficial to the Latino community.

Comida y refrescos, gratis para todos. Actividades de diversión para niños. Pase a estar con nosotros cuando damos la bienvenida a Ladan Alomar, directora ejecutiva del Centro Civico de Amsterdam y de Albany, NY. Animamos su atención y participación. Sientase por favor libre de traer a un miembro de familia o amigo. Nuestras reuniones son informativas, llenas de energía, de ideas, y más importante muy beneficioso a la comunidad del Latino.

Contact Information:

Mohawk Valley Latino Association, Inc.

309 Genesee Street (Park Ave. Entrance) 3rd Floor, Utica, NY

(315)738-1083 ext. 121 or 147

RSVP by: Friday, March 30, 2012

MVLA, Inc. Mission Statement:
To improve the standard of living for all residents of the Mohawk Valley through various services that will educate, empower, achieve awareness among different cultures, help shape young minds, and demonstrate the great opportunities available within the Mohawk Valley.

Mohawk Valley Latino Association
C Sonia Martinez

501(c) 3 Non-Profit Organization

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Executive Director for Literacy Coalition Job Description

Executive Director
The Literacy Coalition of Herkimer & Oneida Counties
The Community Foundation of Herkimer and Oneida Counties

The Literacy Coalition connects organizations in our region to the funding, advocacy, professional development and service support they need to increase the availability of high quality literacy programs. Through collaboration, the Coalition will raise awareness of low literacy, provide links to services and encourage the residents of Herkimer and Oneida counties to become lifelong learners. The goal is that through these commitments, all residents will have the opportunity to fully participate in society and support their community as active citizens.

The Executive Director of the Literacy Coalition under the leadership of The Community Foundation and principal partners will lead a community-wide collaboration of businesses, schools, community and faith-based organizations, volunteers, institutions of higher education and individuals to create and carry forward the Community Literacy Plan. The Executive Director will be an employee of one of the partners. The employer may also be the fiscal agent or another partner may fulfill that role.

The Literacy Coalition and the Executive Director will work on behalf of the community to raise literacy levels to ensure that everyone in Oneida and Herkimer counties reach their highest potential for employment, self-sufficiency, inclusion in society and life-long learning. The Executive Director of the Coalition will provide leadership in developing and implementing the vision, mission, values and strategic goals.
Specific duties include:

  1. Implementing the Community-wide Literacy Plan
    • Work with a consultant to develop, implement and manage the community-wide literacy plan that will serve as the blueprint for all community activities supporting efforts to raise literacy levels.
    • Lead the Literacy Coalition in promoting the achievement of the Community Literacy Indicators fostering significant improved literacy development in the areas of early childhood, school based, out of school, adult education, workforce development and lifelong learning.
    2.        Fund Development/Sustainability
    • Develop and manage systems for resource development, impact measurement, strategic planning, decision-making and on-going communications with interested parties and literacy providers while engaging the literacy network in the community plan.
    • Establish and maintain a relationship with the NYS Education Department in order to access their knowledge and expertise in the area of literacy.
    • Establish and maintain relationships with elected officials, businesses and community stakeholders.
    • Develop and implement in cooperation with the Leadership Council the legislative agenda for the Literacy Coalition.  
    • Facilitate preparation and implementation of a long-range financial plan.
    • Facilitate preparation of all fundraising materials, grant proposals and implementation of an annual budget.
    • Identify types of special events appropriate to the organization’s image and purpose.

          3.        Leading the Literacy Coalition
    • Oversee the work of the Literacy Action Teams that meet monthly or as determined by the needs and priorities of the Literacy Coalition to address long-term and short-term targets and specific strategies to effectively measure literacy success.
    • Continue to develop the collegial relationships with community stakeholders that were developed during the planning process, such as direct one-to-one communication, public presentations, written materials and online networking tools.
    • Advocate for increased literacy support through collaborative efforts and a united voice.

Bachelor’s degree in related field required; Master’s degree strongly preferred; at least 5 to 7 years of experience working in the education, business or non-profit field preferred. Key attributes include: inclusive and welcoming, excellent communicator, sharing the spotlight, trustworthy. Skills required: group facilitation; conflict resolution; fund development; and knowledge of literacy landscape and issues.
  • Excellent written, verbal, public speaking and technology skills. Coordinate projects, prepare correspondence, produce written reports and proposals, make public presentations, and facilitate planning meetings.
  • Act as a collaborator, unifier and negotiator who can build strong and effective relations with a variety of organizations in the community as an energetic team player.
  • Self-starter who initiates and pursues objectives in an organized and efficient manner, working either independently or as a team member.
  • Needs to be credible both with community leadership and have the respect of coalition members.
  • Strong ability to persuade, advocate, develop support of 100% community engagement.
  • Passionate about literacy at all levels.
Because the position will require extensive relationship building with non-profits and volunteers, individuals with strong interpersonal, oral and written communications skills should highlight these skills in the cover letter. Candidates with a sense of humor and desiring to make a difference for the community are most welcome.

This is a full-time, exempt position. Competitive salary and benefits are dependent on experience.

Inquiries, applications (including a resume, cover letter and three professional references), and nominations should be directed to Marie Piayai at Please list ED: Literacy Coalition in the e-mail subject line. A review of candidates will begin immediately and applications will be accepted until March 9, 2012. Only candidates who are being actively considered will be contacted.

Fraud Detection Training

DiNapoli Launches New Fraud Detection Training Initiative for Not-for-Profits

New York State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli today announced a new training program for not-for-profit officials to help them prevent and detect fraud and protect taxpayer dollars.
"New York not-for-profits manage billions of dollars. They contract with the state and other local governments to provide crucial services to New York families," DiNapoli said. "This training course will strengthen their financial management practices and ability to detect and prevent fraud."

The program includes case studies of actual fraud uncovered by state auditors and simple fraud detection tools to assist not-for-profits of all sizes. Taught by state forensic auditors in DiNapoli's office, the program also provides a risk assessment model to help identify the most cost-effective ways to fight waste, fraud and abuse, and meets continuing professional education requirements for eligible accountants.

The first training will be held at the Long Island Center for Nonprofit Leadership at Adelphi University in Garden City on March 1 at 8:30 am. A seminar will also be held in Buffalo on March 16 at 8:30am at the Meals on Wheels Community Learning Center in conjunction with the United Way of Buffalo & Erie County. Additional sessions will be scheduled around the state.
"Bad things can happen to good organizations," said Ann Marie Thigpen, Executive Director of the Long Island Center for NFP Leadership. "It is critical to protect, as best we can, our organization's mission and integrity along with our stakeholders' trust. Thanks to the Comptroller's office, we now have a resource for learning how to ensure that systems and practices are in place to minimize the opportunity for those dishonest few who prey on the good work that we do."

DiNapoli's office is responsible for reviewing and auditing not-for-profit contracts awarded through state agencies. In 2009-2010, DiNapoli met with not-for-profit leaders throughout the state about challenges they were facing in light of the severe national recession. His office also looked at the economic impact of not-for-profits in the state and made recommendations for reforming and modernizing the contracts and payment process. This new training, developed in collaboration with not-for-profit organizations around the state, will help protect limited resources.

The original article can be found here:

For more on the Comptroller's Fraud Detection & Prevention seminars click on the following:

Monday, March 5, 2012

Public Hearing Tues March 6th at Utica City Hall


5pm, Tuesday, March 6

End Closed Door Deals. Prevent Back Room Politics.

Vote City Labor Contracts Up or Down,
In Full Public View, Honest & Open.

Union Members Ratify Their City Contracts… Taxpayers Should, Too.

Proposed Local Law No. 2 of 2012 will bring contracts to the Common Council for an up or down public vote.

Support putting this on the ballot. Attend the Public Hearing, Utica City Hall, 5pm, Tuesday, March 6.

Tell the mayor and council you want real checks and balances on labor contracts.

Union members vote on these matters. Taxpayers should have the same right—through their elected Common Council representatives.

Many long-term problems came from lucrative deals made by past Utica mayors behind closed doors with rubber-stamp approval by the Board of Estimate & Apportionment. This denies taxpayers from saying what they want elected officials to do on union contracts. Taxpayers and the public should get the same right union members have.

Frank Vescera 1st Ward Councilman 797-7893
James Zecca Council-at-Large 725-3771
Tim Trent Concerned Utica Citizen 525-5591

Sponsored by: Councilmen Zecca, Vescera


Presented and read January 18, 2012. Placed on the desk of the members of the Common Council on January 18, 2012.

Adopted by the Common Council by a vote of Yeas _5, Nays_3_on February 15, 2012. Approved by the Mayor on _____________________, 2011 after a Public Hearing on _________2012.


WHEREAS, under the present law, all union contracts that deal with salaries

and benefits are negotiated and approved without any input by the Common Council, and

WHEREAS, said contracts impact the taxpayers of the City of Utica and restricts the legislative body when it is dealing with the Annual Estimate,

WHEREAS, this Local Law is subject to a mandatory referendum and shall be submitted to the voters as the general election to be held November, 6, 2012.

Section 3.007, Section (a) (45) shall provide that the union contracts negotiated by the Administration shall not become effective until said contracts have been approved by a majority vote of the member of the Common Council.

This Local Law shall take effect on January 1, 2013 if adopted by the voters of the General Election to be held November 6, 2012.

Please find attached many City Common Councils throughout NYS approving Union Contracts. The Utica School Board and the Oneida County Board of Legislators also approve all Union Contracts.

Councilman Jim Zecca

Click here: City Council Approves CSEA Contract - Glen Cove, NY Patch

Click here: Council approves CSEA contract granting raises - Twin Cities - The Buffalo News

Click here: 5-year contract approved for Corning firefighters - Corning, NY - The Corning Leader

Click here: Oneida Common Council overrides Matzke veto; approves raises for CSEA, management employees (updated) - oneidadisp

Middletown, Police Union OK Contract
The police union contract has been extended until June 30, 2013.

The extension for police union AFSCME Local 1361 includes a wage freeze for the current fiscal year and a $1,850 raise for every officer in the 2012-13 fiscal year, along with a $100 increase in uniform allowances.

Some officers will receive step increases as part of the deal. The city and the union recently reached an agreement on the contract extension, avoiding arbitration. The common council unanimously approved the contract on Monday.

New contract approved for Fulton firefighters
Published: Monday, December 12, 2011, 9:52 PM Updated: Monday, December 12, 2011, 9:53 PM
By Debra J. Groom / The Post-Standard The Post-Standard

Fulton, NY -- Fulton firefighters and the Fulton Common Council have approved a new three-year contract for the fire department.

Mayor Ronald Woodward said the firefighters will receive no raises in 2012 and 2013 and a 2 percent wage hike in 2014. The amount they pay for health insurance will increase from 10 percent to 15 percent, they will pay for half the cost of their education benefits and anyone hired after Jan. 1 will be subject to a new pay schedule that is lower than the current one.

Woodward is working on the city's 2012 budget and is trying to close a $416,000 gap. The city also is negotiating with the police union and the Civil Service Employees Association.

OCTOBER 4, 2011

RESOLUTION #11/12-59



WHEREAS, a memorandum of agreement has been negotiated between the City of Amsterdam and the Amsterdam Police Benevolent Association subject to approval by both the legislative body and the members of the PBA,

RESOLVED, the Mayor is authorized to sign a contract between the City of Amsterdam and the Amsterdam Police Benevolent Association containing the provisions of the previous collective bargaining agreement as modified by the memorandum of agreement dated August 18, 2011.

City of Amsterdam, NY

Alderman Isabel
Alderwoman Pierce
Alderwoman DeRossi
Alderman Wills
Alderman Leggiero

Dated: __________________________, 2011