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Federal Policy – Actions and Updates; Crowdfunding Explained

Federal Policy: Action and Updates

Take Action on PayDay Lending Rules: The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has proposed a rule aimed at reshaping the market for payday loans and other short-term credit. The proposal would require lenders to ensure that the consumer has the ability to repay the loan, provide notice that the lender is withdrawing funds from the consumer’s account and cease automatic withdraws if the consumer’s account is overdrawn.

As part of the comment period, our colleagues at CFED wrote a letter that strongly backs the Bureau’s efforts, and recommends a number of improvements. Payday lenders are actively working to delay/defeat the CFPB’s efforts. In order to ensure the strongest rule possible and to push back against the industry and its hardline tactics, we ask you to add your voice. It’s easy. Click for an executive summary that outlines CFED’s recommendations for making the rule as strong as possible. The deadline for signing on is October 4! Learn more about PayDay Lending Rules.

Looking Back: Jake Claybaugh at Madison Services Group wrote this recap of our federal policy achievements thus far this year. Highlights include:

  • Successfully advocated for increased rural entrepreneurship funding;
  • Saved the PRIME program at the $5 million funding level;
  • Increased FY17 Appropriations for critical entrepreneurship programs;
  • Held a Congressional briefing to educate the California Congressional delegation on the online lending landscape in California; and
  • Worked toward Women’s Business Center Program re-authorization that includes an increase in funding.

Looking Ahead: Only a handful of work days remain until Congress leaves the Capitol for the election season. With so little time left and an election providing uncertainty, Ann Sullivan tells us what Congress will tackle first.

An Eye to the Elections: Closing the Gap: AEO’s 2016 Policy Platform advocates for innovative changes to close the capital gap for America’s smallest businesses. Hillary Clinton’s campaign took notice as is evident in Clinton’s small business platform.

Crowdfunding Explained, a Webinar

Register for Crowdfunding: A New Rung on the Funding Ladder on September 22, 2016 at 11:00am and find out what crowdfunding can do for your clients.

Clients with limited access to capital face will take different paths on their way to bankability. CDFIs and business coaching organizations need a lot funding options to serve this diverse group. One relatively new option is crowdfunding.

For business owners with a healthy network of personal and client relationships, and the willingness to invest in new marketing strategies, crowdfunding is a viable option to launch or expand an enterprise. An added benefit of a crowdfunding campaign is that it can attract new customers and validate the market for new products and services. Most clients need help structuring and running a campaign; and this webinar will outline the steps so that you can be a resource for your clients.

Kathleen Minogue, founder of Crowdfund Better, will provide insight into the principles that distinguish crowdfunding from other types of capital-raising, as well as assessment criteria to help you ascertain which clients are a good fit for this strategy. Don’t miss this opportunity to add this ‘access to capital’ option to your tool kit.

The Goodies

New opportunities for training, conference information, funding, scholarships, and other information that have crossed our desks since the last Must Know. I have posted a running tab of current Industry Goodies on the CAMEO website that lists items that were in past emails. Check it out to make sure you’re not missing anything, like grants whose deadlines are still alive!

CalCAP ADA Financing Program: The California Pollution Control Financing Authority (CPCFA) opened the new CalCAP Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Financing Program. This program will assist businesses with 15 or fewer full-time equivalent employees to finance retrofits to their facilities (<10,000 square feet) to comply with the ADA. Lenders can submit an amended Financial Institution Application to participate. The small business community needs your assistance in avoiding high frequency litigation and making California businesses accessible. CPCFA has already received news of businesses seeking qualifying loans, and staff will provide a referral to the first lender to sign up to participate.

For Your Clients: The LA Business Portal provides you with all of the information you need to plan, start, manage, and grow your business. Try our Start Up Guide to quickly map out how to register your new business and be compliant. Explore a rich library of content and resources to help you manage and grow your business.

New Report: Asset Funders Network recently published “Prison to Proprietor: Entrepreneurship as a Re-Entry Strategy.” The report features several programs that use business ownership to build skills, connections, and attitudes that strengthen the ability of formerly-incarcerated individuals to succeed as they re-enter their communities. Such programs improve chances of employment, reduce recidivism and benefit both the individual and the community. The expansion of business ownership and entrepreneurship opportunities may particularly benefit people and communities of color who are disproportionately affected by incarceration.

BBoR Update: Happy One-Year Anniversary! CAMEO is pleased to be one of 77 signatories to the Small Business Borrower’s Bill of Rights. Year two will concentrate on evolving and refining the BBoR. CAMEO and our partners, Opportunity Fund and Small Business Majority will be hosting a briefing in Sacramento on October 12. Stay tuned on how you can participate.

OFN Conference: Registration is now open for Opportunity Finance Network’s annual conference – Rethink. It takes place October 24-27, 2016 in Atlanta, GA. Early bird registration ends September 16.

Free Webinar: Join California Non-Profits to understand the 17 propositions on the November ballot. Register for “From Marijuana to the Death Penalty: What Nonprofits & Philanthropy Need to Know About California’s Ballot Propositions” on Tuesday, September 20, 2016, 10:30-11:30am PT.

Free Webinar: Join AEO on September 21, 2016 at 10:00am PT to learn more about their Project CUE (Connecting Underserved Entrepreneurs), a screening and assessment tool that will help solve a $52 billion capital gap by matching small business owners that have been declined by traditional lenders with CDFIs that may be able to assist them. This webinar will focus on the perspective of bank referrers into the Project CUE system.

For Your Clients: Small Business Majority is hosting Access to Capital 101: Funding Options to Start and Grow Your Business every other Wednesday, the next ones are September 21 and October 5. They present an overview of alternative lending options including community development financial institutions, SBA’s loan guarantee program and reputable online options, key questions to consider when seeking funding, the Small Business Borrowers’ Bill of Rights and helpful tools and resources.

SUSTYbiz16 Conference: The upcoming elections will impact the future of sustainable business. ASBC’s 5th Annual Summit, September 25th-27th brings together a remarkable cast of political pundits, advocacy groups and business leaders to help see past the clutter of the 24-hour news cycle. It will be an exciting few days as we visit the Obama White House, lobby Congress, applaud this year’s SUSTY Award recipients and enjoy fascinating conversation among sustainable business leaders.

Inland Empire 2035 Economic Forecast Conference: Join UCR School of Business Administration on September 29, 2016, 8:00-11:30am Riverside, CA at Riverside Convention Center, 3637 5th St, Riverside, CA 92501. Use discount code cameo16 for a $25 discount. Register for the conference.

Conference: Save the Date for the 6th Annual Asset Building SymposiumFostering Economic Equity in a Changing Bay Area on November 3, 2016.

New Report: Opportunity Fund released a very important research report, Unaffordable and Unsustainable: The New Business Lending on Main Street.” Until now, we have been relying on stories to explain what’s happening with online lending. Now we’ve got some data on the loans and cash advances being offered to small businesses by short-term, high-cost alternative lenders. Cliff notes on findings: 94% interest rates; average payment is 1.78x income -YIKES.

Free Fundraising Tool: Take the Leaky Bucket Assessment for Effective Fundraising. By taking this Assessment, a nonprofit will have a better understanding of their fundraising resources and see where they stand in relation to other nonprofits.