COIN, CalCAP and More for CA

In this week’s Must Know:

  • COIN, CalCAP and More for CA
  • Micro Gets A Bill
  • The Goodies: information on important opportunities like trainings, funding, scholarship programs. This week’s highlight are three new job postings.

COIN, CalCAP and More for CA

We are happy to report, Governor Jerry Brown signed AB 624 (Pérez) on Tuesday, October 4, 2011, which will extend the California Organized Investment Network’s (COIN) Tax Credit Program until January 1, 2015. Under the COIN tax credit program, investors invest a minimum of $50,000 in zero interest loans with a Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) for 60 months. In exchange, the investor receives a 20% state tax credit, which is about a 4.3% annual percentage rate of return.

Extending the COIN program ensures that this successful partnership between insurance companies and community based organizations can continue to provide funding for important projects in underserved communities throughout the state. This effort is especially important in these difficult economic times.
   — Commissioner Dave Jones

AB 624 also authorizes the Insurance Commissioner to appoint a COIN Advisory Board to come up with the best ways of increasing insurance industry participation and sound investments while providing fair returns to investors and social benefits to low-income and rural communities. As we’ve mentioned before, CAMEO has met with the Department of Insurance and is talking with the insurance industry. We will be a part of the efforts to encourage the insurance industry to invest in micro and small business in distressed communities.

Also, the ink’s barely dry – today, the governor also signed three bills. CAMEO supported these bill that support programs from which many of you have benefited and will benefit.

  • AB 29 will create the Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development.
  • AB 901 will expand the definition of financial institutions eligible to participate in the California Capital Access Program (CalCAP) to include small business financial development corporations and micro-business lenders and increases CalCAP reporting requirements. CAMEO provided the language to expand the definition of eligible entities.
  • AB 981 which would provide extra incentives within the California Capital Access Program (CalCAP) to encourage lenders to lend to small businesses. This bill would also expand the financial institution definition to include insured depository institutions, insured credit unions, and Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs).

Micro Gets A Bill

It’s called the Microenterprise and Youth Entrepreneurship Development Act of 2011 introduced by Representative Cedric Richmond (D-LA).

The bill, H.R. 2809, would restore and enhance the SBA’s PRIME Programs:

  • Increase focus on technical assistance to very low-income individuals;
  • Give the SBA the ability to waive the matching requirement associated with a PRIME grant;
  • Streamline PRIME’s application and grant award processes;
  • Create of a Youth Entrepreneurship Program at the SBA designed to provide new tools, including technical assistance, to youth entrepreneurs below the age of 25;
  • Create a Microenterprise Coordinator position at the SBA who would be responsible for coordinating between existing micro-business programs to enhance their impact.

Thanks to AEO who was the catalyst for the bill.

And yep, as you guessed, CAMEO will support this bill. And we’ll ask for yours in the near future.

The Goodies

New opportunities for trainings, conference information, funding, scholarships, and other information that have crossed our desks since the last Must Know. A running tab of current Goodies is on the CAMEO website.

Job Opportunities: MEDA, Renaissance Entrepreneurial Center and Global Partnerships are hiring. Check out the job listings offered by members and others in our industry.

New Report: The SBA published a report on Women-owned Businesses. Download the full report and summary. A teaser – women’s share of total U.S. firms increased from 26 percent in 1997 to 29 percent in 2007; 88 percent were nonemployer firms in 2007.

Speak up: The House of Representatives has an open mic forum for small businesses. You should 1) let the House know that technical assistance needs to be preserved because … (Fill in the blank) and 2) send the link to your clients to have them describe the value of technical assistance.

Cool App: The Department of Labor will deliver employment stats to your phone.

For your clients: CARAT has funding from the California Emerging Technology Fund (CETF) to provide technology training to small businesses in California. This is stimulus project funding through the US Department of Commerce, National Telecommunications and Information Agency (NTIA). CARAT is collaborating with partners in six regions in California to administer the targeted technology training program for free. Check out the schedules for October and November.

Archived Webinar: Friedman Associates have made their “Innovations in Green Microenterprise Development in Rural Communities” webinar available. Download the powerpoint for watch the whole webinar.

Free Webinar: The next Connecting Communities webinar from the Federal Reserve is “Addressing the Credit Impacts of Foreclosure” on Thursday, October 13, 2011 at 11:00 a.m. Pacific. Register for the webinar.

Microfinance Speaker Series at UC Berkeley: The six-week course explores how microfinance operations have grown to become sustainable models for financial services for developing countries. Comprising advice and best practices from successful practitioners and institutions around the world, the course gives an inside look into new technology ventures targeting the industry. Led by renowned Berkeley faculty and tied to the exciting venture capital environment of the Bay Area, the series is an excellent forum to learn about up-to-the-minute challenges and debates in the world of microfinance. The course is Wednesdays from 4pm-6pm PST, starting on October 26 – December 7, 2011. The regular price of the series is $1500, but non-profit organizations only pay $500! Register for the class or email Shufina English for more information.