New Address: Two Embarcadero Center, 8th floor, San Francisco, CA 94111     

Letters of Support Needed for Two California Bills

  • Read Small Business Majority and CAMEO’s Op-Ed
  • Support AB 184 and SB 197
  • CAMEO’s Annual Member Meeting – Register Now
  • Faces of Entrepreneurship Award Nominations Open
  • The Goodies – This week’s highlight includes two member events next week: The San Diego Microfinance Summit on April 15; and Opportunity Fund’s Taste of Microfinance on April 16 in San Francisco .

Support AB 184 and SB 197

AB 184 and SB 197 are among the bills that CAMEO supports for this session. We hope you will too!

1. AB-184 (E. Garcia) Small Business Technical Assistance Act of 2015: AB 184 will establish GoBiz’s Infrastructure and Economic Development Bank as the state liaison with the ‘federal business technical assistance centers’, which include SBDCs, WBCs, VBOCs, SCORE and PTACs. The bill would recognize these federal programs and authorize any state agency to directly contract with them! The bill would also make it possible for the California legislature to make future appropriations for the centers. Right now, though, note that appropriations is not the subject of this bill. But passage of this bill will open the door to potential funding. Download an AB 184 Fact Sheet. Send in your AB 184 Letter of Support (template) by April 14, 2015 to and cc me.

2. SB 197 (Block): This bill will allow CAMEO’s microlenders to pay referral fees to consultants, non-profits (e.g. TA providers), and others who refer successful loans. It will give your clients more information about affordable lending products and enable microlenders to more easily compete with online alternative lenders. Download the SB 197 Support Letter Template and put it on your letterhead. Edit appropriately, then email to:, and cc and me. Please do this by April 21, 2015. For more information check out the Must Know from February 19, 2015. We are excited to co-sponsor the bill with Opportunity Fund!

CAMEO’s Annual Member Meeting

Join at our Annual Member Meeting in Sacramento to learn about business pollinators!

June 9, 2015
8:30 am – 6:00 pm
Sterling Hotel
1300 H Street, Sacramento

The meeting will be a full day – first, member advocacy followed by lunchtime keynote, Michael Shuman, speaking about his new book, The Local Economy Solution. We’ll then break out into rich discussions about the five “P”s of business pollinators, that will give you tools to make the case for your work. And of course there will be time to network and celebrate our Faces Entrepreneurs (see below) in true CAMEO style.

Faces of Entrepreneurship Award Nominations

We end our day in Sacramento with the Fifth Annual CAMEO Faces of Entrepreneurship Award during the reception. Last year’s winners were Patty Rodriguez of SF Parking (see photo), nominated by Working Solutions, and Alfredo Garcia of Watsonville Diesel, nominated by El Pajaro Community Development Corporation. This year it could be your client!

Legislators from the business owners’ districts will present the awards. This is a great opportunity for your clients and helps us build strategic connections with our legislators. Award winners will be selected based on the following criteria: type of business, region, demonstrated growth and job creation, and contributions to their community.

Nominate your businesses by April 24, 2015.

Post a photo and a one-liner of your nominee on CAMEO’s Facebook page once you’ve filled out the nomination form.

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!

Member Kudos: Congrats to Working Solutions who was selected by the San Rafael Chamber of Commerce as San Rafael’s Small Business of 2015.

Member News: 1) The MicroEnterprise Collaborative of Inland Southern California launched its new website designed to help small business owners of the Inland Southern California region access the business counseling, training and microlending resources needed to grow their businesses. 2) In partnership with the City of San Francisco, Renaissance Entrepreneurship Center presents a series of neighborhood development stories shared by SoMa residents, community stakeholders and business owners.

New Report: Small Business Majority released a paper examining the impact of freelancers on the economy, how emerging technologies are paving the way for more people to work for themselves and how the U.S. can update broadband policies that address the needs of this new workforce.

Member Event: The seventh annual San Diego Microfinance Summit is on April 15, 4:30 – 9:00 pm. Presented by the San Diego Microfinance Alliance, the event will take place at University of San Diego’s Joan B. Kroc Institute for Peace & Justice.

Member Event: Tickets are on sale for Opportunity Fund’s Taste of Microfinance on April 16, 2015 at Minna Gallery in San Francisco. Celebrate entrepreneurship and microfinance in the local food scene.

Funding Opportunity: The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Children and Families (ACF), Office of Community Services (OCS) today announced the next funding round for CED and CED-HFFI grants. These are extremely competitive grants that supports social enterprises that create jobs for low-income individuals and require a considerable amount of pre-planning. Friedman Associates will partner with a limited number of CDCs and CDFIs to write successful proposals. The grant deadlines are April 24, 2015.

Business Conference: NAWBO California ‘Propel Your Business’ Conference takes place on April 27-28, 2015 at the Sheraton Grand Sacramento Hotel. The theme is Think Bigger- Grow Strategically-Network Statewide.

Conference Scholarship: Credit Builders Alliance hosts the 2015 CBA Credit Building Symposium on Wednesday, July 8, 2015 – Thursday, July 9, 2015 in Washington, DC. They have 10 scholarships ($250 per organization) for interested groups on a first-come, first-served basis to help defray some of the costs related to the registration fee, travel, and lodging. Email them ASAP if you are interested in the scholarship.