In this Must Know…
- Mses. CAMEO Go to DC
- Microlending Essentials, Next Week in LA
- Happy National Veterans Small Business Week! Read National Women’s Business Council’s “Veteran Women & Business: A Data Resource”
- The Goodies – This week’s highlight is that open enrollment for Covered California 2018 began on November 1st, and is open through January 31st, 2018. Covered California is the only insurance marketplace in California where eligible consumers can receive financial assistance to help pay for their health insurance.
Mses. CAMEO Go to DC
Shufina and I visited our nation’s capitol last week to make sure that the self-employed were on the minds of legislators as they tackle tax reform. On Wednesday, we met with staff from the offices of Senator Diane Feinstein, Representative Judy Chu and Representative David Valadao members. We also met with Representative Nanette Barragán. We talked about the importance of including the 70 million people in the U.S. economy that are receiving 1099 forms and doing some kind of independent work, whether full-time or part-time. The gist of our message was published in an op-ed on Wednesday by The Hill – “Tax reform for the growing gig economy.” Then, the House Small Business Committee was so kind to issue a press release to spread the message even further!.
Policies that we support include HR 3717, the Small Business Owners’ Tax Simplification Act and…
…we need to consider policies that encourage economic activity and promote the survival, growth and innovation of micro-businesses and the self-employed. Expanding the EITC to the self-employed, letting VITA sites help with Schedule C filings, allowing the self-employed to deduct health expenses from their business income, and ensuring a strong taxpayer education effort through the IRS and other federal programs are just a few examples of the many policies that would help all entrepreneurs, including the lower-moderate income ones.
From what we can tell so far, our suggestions haven’t made it into the tax plan released today, but we will be working with our Congressional delegation to include them as amendments in the final reform. You can download a summary of the bill provided by the House Ways and Means Committee.
On Thursday we co-hosted a legislative briefing with Intuit in which about 30 people attended, including about 20 legislative staff and the staff person from Ways and Means. I gave a brief intro to spectrum of entrepreneurs participating in the gig economy and then we had a panel discussion about the policies listed above. Thanks to the following experts who participated!
- Melissa Netram, Intuit, Director of Corporate Affairs (moderator)
- Mohammad Ali, Director of Policy and Government Affairs, Small Business Majority
- Caroline Bruckner, Managing Director Kogod Tax Policy Center
- Rob Yavor, House Small Business Committee
For those of you who are interested in policy, check out Shortchanged: The Tax Compliance Challenges of Small Business Operators Driving the On-Demand Platform Economy by Caroline Bruckner, our panelist.
And a Small Business Majority survey found small businesses think they are at a disadvantage under the current tax system, and they want to see tax reform that is both fair and responsible. The poll revealed small business owners are concerned about creating a level playing field when it comes to taxes with 7 in 10 small business owners believing that their business is harmed somewhat or a lot when big corporations use loopholes to avoid taxes. Also, the vast majority of small business owners (85 percent) feel the tax code unfairly benefits large corporations over small businesses, and that corporations and wealthy Americans should be required to pay their fair share of taxes.
An extra thanks to Intuit’s Tax and Financial Center and Melissa Netram for their support in organizing the briefing, House Small Business Chair Representative Steve Chabot for sponsoring the room, and the entire Madison Services Group team for helping with our advocacy efforts.
Microlending Essentials, Next Week in LA
Register for Microlending Essentials, November 7-9, 2017, in Los Angeles.
CAMEO’s Microlending Essentials is a three-day, hands-on training for business coaching and lending organizations on the theory and practice of microlending underwriting. Participants will apply all they learn to case studies–actual microloan applications and supporting documents.
For business coaching organizations: Is one of your goals to help business owners access capital? Are too many of your referrals to lenders denied? Does your staff know how to talk to a lender in lenders’ terms?
CAMEO’s Micolending Essentials will help your staff think like a lender so that your referrals experience a higher rate of success. In turn, you will be able to train your business clients in the key components most likely to get them qualified for financing. What your staff will learn:
- Your staff will be trained in analyses on global cash, bank statement, credit report and more.
- They will be able to write credit memos, the lingua franca of lending, that make the case for your clients.
- They will be able to talk specific underwriting terms to lenders, to better discern how to channel referrals to the most appropriate lender.
- Your staff will improve your training programs to increase business owners’ financial and credit management skills.
For community lenders: Is one of the following an organizational goal? – to increase your loan volume; to improve your portfolio performance; to learn how to extend credit, confidently, to disadvantaged clients; to make more consistent credit decisions?
- Your staff will be trained in analyses such as global cash, credit report, bank statement, debt-to-income and credit memo writing.
- They will be able to make sound, consistent, credit-based loan recommendations.
- They will have ideas for strengthen your program in ways that benefit clients and your organization
Register for Microlending Essentials, November 7-9, 2017, in Los Angeles.
The training will take place at the Sheraton Grand, 711 South Hope Street, Los Angeles, CA 90017 in downtown Los Angeles. The agenda, hotel room information and other logistics forthcoming.
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!
Healthcare: Covered California open enrollment for 2018 began November 1 and is open through January 31, 2018. Covered California is the only insurance marketplace in California where eligible consumers can receive financial assistance to help pay for their health insurance. 8 in 10 Californians enrolled in Covered California receive financial assistance with most people being able to find premiums less than $100 per month. Although open enrollment lasts until January 31, 2018, you must enroll by December 15, 2017, in order to have your coverage begin on January 1, 2018.
Rebuilding After Disaster: Grantmakers Concerned with Immigrants and Refugees lists organizations and funds that are rebuilding Northern California:
- FEMA Application for Disaster Relief
- California Assistance and Services for Disaster Recovery
- Benefits.gov Disaster Relief Resource
Communication Resource: How to Create Awesome Social Media Graphics for Free
CAMEO Tool: Susan Brown, our microlending expert, created Phase I of a Community Loan Policy Manual Workbook to assist community lenders to create fully developed loan policies manual. Lenders of every stripe that address each topic and answer all the questions will have a complete loan manual that reflects a comprehensive approach to the details of running a high-quality program.
Funding Opportunity (Loan Guarantee): Funds are available now through USDA Rural Development’s B&I Loan Guarantee Program to help you support rural businesses with a variety of projects including start-up, expansion, refinancing, and disaster recovery.
For Your Client: SPUR hosts a Small Business Series. Part One is “Raising Capital to Start to Grow in Oakland” on Wednesday, November 8, 2017, 7:30–10:00 am, SPUR Oakland,1544 Broadway Street, Oakland, CA. Part Two is “Finding the Right Location and Opportunities” on Friday, November 17, 4:00–7:00pm. Both take place at SPUR Oakland,1544 Broadway Street, Oakland, CA. Many CAMEO members are participating.
Professional Meeting: Registration is now open for CRC Sacramento Member Meeting on Tuesday, November 14, 2017. Connect with colleagues about experiences in the field and to share updates on CRC campaigns and recent policy changes that impact communities. Lunch will be provided and registration is now open. If you have any questions, please contact Liana Molina.
For Your Clients: The California Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and Small Business Majority Access are presenting an access to capital webinar in Spanish on November 21, and December 14 at 10:00am PT // 1:00pm ET. Click the links for registration and information in Spanish.
For Your Client: Do you know a small business owner with an amazing success story to tell? If so, submit your nomination today for the 2018 National Small Business Week Awards. All nominations must be mailed or hand delivered to the nearest SBA Office no later than 3:00 pm ET on January 9, 2018. Consult the Awards Guidelines for details.
New Toolkit: Credit Builders Alliance has developed a new toolkit that provides a primer on the importance of credit building to establish businesses as financial assets for returning citizens, followed by a comprehensive and dynamic set of tools and resources to help practitioners work one-on-one with their clients to build credit in pursuit of their entrepreneurial goals. Download the executive summary – Achieving Credit Strength: A Toolkit for Supporting Returning Citizen Entrepreneurs.
Communications Tool: Wired Impact’s The Beginner’s Guide to Nonprofit Website Content.