Heating Up in Sacramento

In this week’s Must Know:

  • Heating up the potential in Sacramento
  • The Goodies: information on important opportunities like trainings, funding, scholarship programs. This week’s highlight is a free webinar series to Launch and Grow an EITC Program for Your Community on Thursday, September 1, 2011 at 10:00 a.m. PDT.

Heating up the potential in Sacramento

Last Thursday, CAMEO went to Sacramento. It was hot and so was CAMEO! We had productive meetings with the Departments of Insurance and Labor, Assemblymember Ricardo Lara (D-South Gate) and the Lieutenant Governor. If they’re talking jobs, we want to make sure that they’re talking micro.

Stop #1: Through the California Organized Investment Network (COIN) program of the Department of Insurance, there is a program called the ‘investment opportunity bulletin program’ to push insurance companies to make high impact investments. They have $18.6 billion to invest in the community, but only a small percentage of that goes to high impact. The department wants to convene the insurers and the community investees in order to play matchmaker. If the department brings the insurers, our role will be to bring the high impact community investments.

Stop #2: We had a warm reception from the Secretary of Labor, Marty Morgenstern. We talked about how self-employment is a job creator and a viable option for the unemployed. He was encouraging about CAMEO’s request to apply for the Workforce Innovation Funds from the U.S. Department of Labor so that members can more easily partner with local Workforce Investment Boards. Now if only the feds would release the money….

Stop #3: Erika Contreras, the chief of staff for Assemblymember Lara, told us about an upcoming state audit on all Workforce money coming into the State from the federal government. We’re hoping it will turn up resources that can go toward entrepreneurial training and other micro-oriented technical assistance. Erika also told us that they’ll be working during the fall on a bill that supports our field and she welcomes policy recommendations. CAMEO will weigh in and so can you. Send me any suggestions you may have for CAMEO’s Policy Committee to discuss.

Stop #4: Our final stop of the day was at Lieutenant Governor Newsom’s office. You may have seen Lt. Gov. Newsom’s economic agenda for California. It is quite extensive and we believe there is a big role for micro to play. Newsom said that he absolutely supports small business and believes that we can find a way to work together.

You should also know that Governor Brown appointed Mike Rossi to be his “senior jobs advisor.” Be rest assured that Claudia will be meeting with him shortly.

The Goodies

To keep these emails shorter and sweeter, For the most part, I will list new opportunities for trainings, conference information, funding, scholarships, and other information that have crossed our desks since the last Must Know. If you need to refer back, never fear, a running tab of available Goodies is on the CAMEO website.

Free webinar series: Launch and Grow an EITC Program for Your Community on Thursday, September 1, 2011 at 10:00 a.m. PDT. By participating in free tax preparation programs, community-based organizations can help their clients access and leverage tax credits to attain financial security and build assets. Sign up for this first of four webinars (other dates: September 22, October 6, October 20) which will show you how to launch an EITC program and/or VITA site.

Celebrate ‘Small Business Month’: The Oakland Merchants’ Leadership Forum, comprised of all the business districts in Oakland has designated September as ‘Small Business Month.’ Events will kick off at Vo’s Restaurant at the corner of Webster Street and Grand Avenue on September 1.

The National Street Food Conference: The 2011 Conference takes place on August 21 and 22nd at the Fort Mason Center. The conference, sponsored by La Cocina, will focus on street food culture- the food and the people that make it-, policy and legislation, the economics of street food, and small business incubation. Buy tickets now and enter ‘CAMEO’ into the discount code box and hit apply to receive a 50 percent discount. And if you’re going to be in San Francisco for that conference, attend La Cocina’s San Francisco Street Festival on August 20. Yum.

The Department of Homeland Security’s Citizenship and Immigration Services Ombudsman invites Small and Start-Up Business Stakeholders to a listening session about immigration services in Los Angeles, California at noon on August 31, 2011. The Ombudsman’s Office will share what we learn with DHS and USCIS leadership who have recently announced efforts to “fuel the nation’s economy and stimulate investment by attracting foreign entrepreneurial talent of exceptional ability or who otherwise can create jobs, form start-up companies, and invest capital in areas of high unemployment.” There is no fee for this event; however, registration will be closed when all spaces are reserved. Further details about the meeting and additional speakers will be provided upon registration. To register, please provide us your name, business or organization affiliation, and email address in an e-mail to CISOmbudsman.PublicAffairs@dhs.gov. In the subject field, please note “August 31 Stakeholder Meeting.”

Build the field and promote your clients: Have them register their business with AEO’s business directory. The collective story of these businesses and their impact on their community show the power of Micro.

Find news and article links on CAMEO’s Facebook page. ‘Like’ us while you’re there!