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Helping Nonprofits Help Arkansas

November 2012

Nonprofit Advocacy

Arkansas Coalition for Excellence: Helping Nonprofits Help Arkansas We are proud to work with you to achieve ACE’s mission and vision together: Mission: Strengthen Arkansas Nonprofits Vision: A strong, vibrant, united and effective nonprofit sector that is well positioned to meet the diverse needs of all Arkansans. Our Core Values: Best Practices | Inclusive | Unity in Diversity | Connecting & Equipping | Statewide Vision | Regional Approach

Have you taken the Arkansas Nonprofit Advocacy Survey yet? This survey will help guide our upcoming advocacy efforts. The deadline is today 11/27.


Greetings from ACE


Upcoming Trainings and Events



Member Corner Federal and State Policy Updates Grants Corner

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Resources & Other Links Contact Us

Arkansas Coalition for Excellence | 200 River Market Avenue, Suite 100 | Little Rock, AR 72201 | 501.375.1223 |


GREETINGS FROM ACE Dear ACE Members and Friends, Black Friday, Cyber Monday, Small Business Saturday – you have heard about them all. And now, on November 27, there is #GivingTuesday to help you kick off your holiday season. Giving Tuesday is about “giving as good as we get.” What better campaign could there be for Arkansas’ nonprofits? While we just learned about #GivingTuesday several weeks ago, we think it has great potential to pull us all together in raising money, volunteers AND public awareness. We ask for your financial support this giving season so that we can continue our work on your behalf. Long-term there is a real need, though, for nonprofits to get beyond creative giving campaigns and develop new revenue streams. Many organizations have expanded fee for service models. Others have developed entrepreneurial businesses to support programs that serve their missions (sometimes combining the mission with the business). In the field of early childhood education, advocates have created innovative funding mechanisms like social impact financing which marries business investors with nonprofit programs to solve community need with the goal of each receiving a positive return on their investment… whether it be qualified workers in the future for business or tangible gains in the quality of community life for nonprofits. Check It Out

Early Childhood “Pay-For-Success” Social Impact Finance: A PKSE Bond Example to Increase School Readiness and Reduce Special Education Costs A Report of the Kauffman Foundation -- ReadyNation Working Group on Early Childhood Finance Innovation

A struggling economy, political division and social needs that surpass revenues require us in the short-term, however, to pay attention to Congressional actions that threaten to further undermine the health of the nonprofit sector. This newsletter issue is concerned with advocacy because we must prepare to act in concert to protect the vital interests of the nonprofit sector. One threat under discussion is elimination of the charitable giving tax incentive or in limiting deductions. Another is budget cuts (as if our nonprofits haven’t already experienced their fair share of these). Please help us address these challenges by completing the Arkansas Nonprofit Advocacy Survey by midnight on November 27th . This information will allow us to respond to specific Congressional proposals. Let us know if you would like to work with us and our partners such as the Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families and others (see article on pg. for more information). Thank you for your support, financial and otherwise, as we engage in this exciting, ever-changing world of community nonprofit work. Sincerely,

President and CEO Arkansas Coalition for Excellence | 200 River Market Avenue, Suite 100 | Little Rock, AR 72201 | 501.375.1223 |


UPCOMING TRAININGS, EVENTS & PROGRAMS Idealware Webinar Building an Effective E-mail List Successful online fundraising, actions, and outreach all start with a solid and substantial list of email addresses. But how do you build a list of the addresses of constituents that are interested in your cause? We’ll discuss a wide variety of tools and techniques to gather solid email addresses, from direct mail and list appending techniques, to online registration methods, to PR and marketing tactics, to social media and viral marketing list building efforts – and how all of those things fit together. Thursday December 13| 12:00p.m. to 1:30 p.m. Webinar– accessible online and by phone Cost- $40.00 Trainer– Andrea Berry, Idealware Director of Partnerships & Learning Register here. GrantStation Webinar One Little Tool With Such Big Benefits: The Logic Model Do you ever wish you could predetermine how likely it is that the program you are designing will produce the desired results? Or if the resources you have planned and the strategies you have chosen are sufficient and appropriate? Short of having a crystal ball, constructing a logic model before you launch your program is the next best strategy. The logic model is a one-page diagram that lays out the resources, activities, outputs, and outcomes of a proposed program in a way that challenges the rationale of it all. Because it is a virtual road map for planning, budgeting, development, evaluation, and promotion, many funders require it as part of the grant application. In this webinar, Susan Eliot walks you through the development of a logic model, shares several examples, and leaves you with a step-by-step guide to creating your own logic model. She also shows you how to connect the other components of your grant application to the logic model. This webinar is designed for the novice grantseeker. Upon completion of the training, you will receive the power point presentation and the notes. This webinar will be held on Wednesday, December 5, 2012. Visit the link above to register. Wednesday December 5 | 1:00p.m. to 2:30p.m. Webinar– accessible online and by phone Cost- $89.00 per person, $150.00 per site Trainer:- Susan Eliot GrantStation Tour Tuesday December 11 | 1:00p.m. to 2:00p.m. Webinar– accessible online and by phone Cost– FREE Trainer:-Jeremy Smith, GrantStation Communications & Technology Director Register here. Arkansas Coalition for Excellence | 200 River Market Avenue, Suite 100 | Little Rock, AR 72201 | 501.375.1223 |


Deadline to Register is Tomorrow 11/28!

Arkansas Coalition for Excellence | 200 River Market Avenue, Suite 100 | Little Rock, AR 72201 | 501.375.1223 |


PUBLIC POLICY AND ADVOCACY Part 1 Washington Watch: The Knowns and Unknowns of the Fiscal Cliff for Nonprofits By David L. Thompson, Vice President of Public Policy for the National Council of Nonprofits There is a little that is known for certain and much that is unknown about what will happen in the waning weeks of 2012 as Congress and the President work to avert the Fiscal Cliff, the $600 billion in automatic spending cuts and tax hikes that go into effect soon. There is a great deal at stake for charitable nonprofits and their ability to pursue their missions in their communities, most notably, a serious threat to the charitable deduction. First the knowns: On December 31, dozens of tax breaks expire and Americans face tax bills of around $500 billion in terms of increased individual and capital gains tax rates, return of the alternative minimum tax for 27 million taxpayers, an estate tax set at 2001 levels, and more. On January 2, nearly $110 billion in arbitrary, across-the-board spending cuts take effect under the process known as “sequestration.” On the domestic side, this means spending will be slashed indiscriminately, with automatic $54.6 billion cuts of about nine percent to programs that provide basic human needs, education, public safety, disaster assistance, law enforcement, and much more. Several entitlement and safety net programs are exempted from the sequestration cuts but have seen past spending reductions or are on the table for new cuts in the ongoing negotiations. We also know that a double-dip recession will occur almost immediately if Congress and the President do nothing and allow the $600 billion in spending cuts and tax hikes to go into effect as scheduled, according to repeated reports from the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO). And, CBO predicts a recession down the road if policymakers instead choose to “kick the can down the road” by cancelling the fiscal restraints and allowing the federal budget deficit to skyrocket. Finally, as we all know, charitable nonprofits will be expected to pick up the slack when programs are reduced. The unknowns relate to the many ways that our leaders in Washington choose to deal with the Fiscal Cliff, or whether they fail to act at all. Here are two of many options: One option is to allow the country’s economy to “go over the cliff,” meaning nothing is done by December 31 and the ensuing fiscal crisis (theoretically) gives one political party or the other sufficient political leverage to demand a deal on its terms. At present, partisans on both sides claim that the “over the cliff” approach benefits them. Click here to read more...

Arkansas Coalition for Excellence | 200 River Market Avenue, Suite 100 | Little Rock, AR 72201 | 501.375.1223 |


ACE’s Upcoming Advocacy Efforts ACE recognizes the need in Arkansas for an effective, informed nonprofit network with a strong research and public policy focus to advocate on behalf of the people we serve and our nonprofit sector. Our Board of Directors is currently engaged in a strategic planning process which will guide ACE in building a sustainable, inclusive and effective advocacy program. However, events in Washington require that we not wait until that process is complete before taking action on several issues that may seriously impact our sector. These issues include severe budget cuts (known as sequestration or the “fiscal cliff”) and possible elimination of the charitable giving tax exemption. The budget cuts, in particular, will hit all levels of government, and therefore all types of nonprofits and state governments. This will mean the loss of critical services for Arkansans, loss of jobs in the nonprofit sector, and we will be expected to do much more with much less. So that we can tell the story of the impact these cuts will have in Arkansas, we have sent out a survey to gather this information from the nonprofit sector (If you haven’t already, please complete the survey before midnight on November 27, 2012 to do so.) We will use the results of this survey to immediately inform our state and federal elected officials about the impact of sequestration and deep budget cuts. For the 2012-2013 Legislative Session, ACE will:  Work with our partners such as the National Council of Nonprofits, Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families, Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation and others to make the case for Arkansas nonprofits as needed  Monitor all filed state and federal legislative bills for issues that may impact the nonprofit sector  Communicate this information to our advocacy partners (including our nonprofit members who elect to participate) and provide strategies where appropriate  Release our Economic Impact of the Nonprofit Sector report in January 2013 Educate & Inform legislators, policy makers, the media and communities about the needs of the nonprofit sector Arkansas Coalition for Excellence | 200 River Market Avenue, Suite 100 | Little Rock, AR 72201 | 501.375.1223 |


MEMBERSHIP New and Renewing Members Tree of Life Preventive Health Maintenance, Fort Smith NEW Arc for the River Valley, Fort Smith NEW The Nature Conservancy, Little Rock Dawson Williams, Jacksonville Bob Shoulders, Fayetteville

Want to join our coalition of over 300 members dedicated to strengthening the nonprofit sector ? Contact Rebecca at 501.375.1225 or rzimmermann

Member of the Month Founded in February 2011 as a 501(c)3 nonprofit corporation, Sallis Ranch Large Animal Rescue, Inc., (Sallis Ranch Rescue) located in Greenbrier, Arkansas is dedicated to taking in abused and/or abandoned equines. As of November 2012, the ranch has already assisted in over 150 equine rescues across Arkansas. RANCH BACKGROUND: Sallis Ranch has been a Quarter Horse breeding and training facility for over 25 years. Greg Sallis, operations manager and co-founder of Sallis Ranch Rescue has made a career in the past with horses as a professional roper and in breeding and training quarter horses. He attended the University of Central Arkansas and during that time worked as a veterinarian tech where he learned invaluable vet skills in caring for equines and other large farm animals. During the last 25 years, Mr. Sallis has been able to build an equine facility of 120 acres, a pipe riding arena, round pen and two barns. In the past five years, and after some research, the ranch realized that there was a great need for an equine rescue facility that had the skills; knowledge and land to help the tremendous animals that had helped him support his family over the years. Mr. Sallis stated that it’s the most rewarding decision he has ever made and is looking forward to building the rescues resources and helping as many horses as possible. HOW DOES THE RESCUE OPERATE? WHERE DO THE HORSES COME FROM?: Sallis Ranch Rescue is an independent 501(c)3 nonprofit organization. The rescue works with county sheriff’s departments all over the state; the Arkansas state police and local Humane Societies. The Rescue has also assisted in cases through national organizations such as PETA, the ASPCA and the Humane Society of the United States. A normal day is one where the rescue receives a call that horses are out and the owners cannot be located – or, an owner of horses has been sited with neglect by the authorities and they are there to aid in any seizers that are necessary through the appropriate law process. Because the rescue has the skills and knowledge of how to capture/gather horses, they are a valuable resource to law enforcement. Before Sallis Ranch Rescue, so many times, when the police are called – there was simply no one available to help aid in the safe roundup of horses that are out or simply abandoned and wandering in areas that could hurt humans and personal property. Read more...

Arkansas Coalition for Excellence | 200 River Market Avenue, Suite 100 | Little Rock, AR 72201 | 501.375.1223 |


ACE MEMBER BENEFITS ACE Members Receive Full Access to Foundation Center at the Frueauff Foundation Resource Room Established in 1956 and today supported by close to 550 foundations, the Foundation Center is the leading source of information about philanthropy worldwide. Through data, analysis, and training, it connects people who want to change the world to the resources they need to succeed. The Center maintains the most comprehensive database on U.S. and, increasingly, global grantmakers and their grants — a robust, accessible knowledge bank for the sector. It also operates research, education, and training programs designed to advance knowledge of philanthropy at every level. Thousands of people visit the Center's web site each day and are served in its five regional library/learning centers and its network of 450 funding information centers located in public libraries, community foundations, and educational institutions nationwide and beyond.

If you have not used Foundation Center before, ACE staff will assist you with navigating the center. Note: The Freuaff Foundation Resource Room also hosts a library of books on a variety of nonprofit management topics available for check-out.

Contact Rebecca or 501-375-1223 for more information or to reserve the Resource Room.

Click here to learn more about your membership cost savings benefits. Arkansas Coalition for Excellence | 200 River Market Avenue, Suite 100 | Little Rock, AR 72201 | 501.375.1223 |

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Arkansas Coalition for Excellence | 200 River Market Avenue, Suite 100 | Little Rock, AR 72201 | 501.375.1223 |


GRANTS CORNER Grants Address Environmental Issues Cedar Tree Foundation The Cedar Tree Foundation is dedicated to the belief that the power of individuals and organizations can make significant changes in our world. The Foundation's grantmaking focuses on the following areas of concern: sustainable agriculture, environmental education, and environmental health. The Foundation gives particular consideration to proposals demonstrating strong elements of environmental justice and conservation. Although the Foundation does not accept unsolicited proposals, U.S.-based nonprofit organizations working in the Foundation’s program areas are welcome to submit letters of inquiry at any time. Visit the Foundation’s website for instructions on developing letters of inquiry. Humanities Programs Supported National Endowment for the Humanities The America's Historical and Cultural Organizations program provides support for museums, libraries, historic places, and other organizations that produce public programs in the humanities. Planning and implementation grants are available. The application deadline is January 9, 2013. Homelessness Programs Funded Department of Housing and Urban Development The Continuum of Care Program provides support to address homelessness throughout communities. The application deadline is January 18, 2013.

Investor Education Initiatives Funded FINRA Investor Education Foundation The mission of the FINRA Investor Education Foundation is to provide underserved Americans with the knowledge, skills, and tools necessary for financial success throughout life. The Foundation's General Grant Program supports innovative research and educational projects that help investors better understand the markets and the basic principles of saving and investing. Currently the Foundation is especially interested in applications that focus on the following areas: creating new marketing and distribution channels for financial and investor education, helping Americans manage their finances and investments in retirement, meeting the financial and investor education needs of underserved audiences, using behavioral finance to improve saving and investing, and improving investor protection. Project Concept Forms may be submitted at any time. Detailed grant guidelines are available on the Foundation's website.

Look for more available grants on Get a free subscription with your ACE membership. Arkansas Coalition for Excellence | 200 River Market Avenue, Suite 100 | Little Rock, AR 72201 | 501.375.1223 |

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PUBLIC POLICY AND ADVOCACY Part 2 The Fiscal Cliff: What It Means to Nonprofits The re-election of President Obama and the maintenance by the voters of essentially the status quo in Congress returns the same players to the bargaining table to address the fiscal crisis popularly referred to as the “fiscal cliff,” the automatic cuts of almost $110 billion in spending and the expiration of $500 billion in tax cuts at the end of the year. Federal policymakers have to act swiftly and thoughtfully to get the correct balance of reducing the nation’s debt and avoiding another recession as will occur by taking too much money out of the economy through spending cuts and taxes, according to the Congressional Budget Office. Depending on how Congress acts – delaying some or all of the fiscal challenges – charitable nonprofits and their work in communities could be significantly harmed.

The first grouping of threats comes from the domestic portion of “sequestration,” the automatic $54.6 billion across-theboard spending cuts scheduled to occur on January 2, 2013. These arbitrary cuts to domestic programs threaten charitable nonprofits by (a) reducing funds for governments to support individuals in need and pay for services provided by nonprofits, and (b) increasing the number and needs of individuals turning to nonprofits for services. A related threat is that many policymakers have tried to shift all or some of the scheduled $54.6 billion in defense cuts over to domestic programs. (For more, read these previous articles in the Chronicle of Philanthropy and Huffington Post.)

The second grouping of threats comes from how policymakers will change tax policy to cut the nation’s long-term debt. Republicans have partially changed their position and are acknowledging that revenue increases will be needed to avert the “fiscal cliff,” but continue to resist allowing tax rates on upper-income taxpayers to go into effect at year’s end. One way under discussion by both political parties is to increase revenues by eliminating or reducing various credits and deductions by applying a cap to itemized deductions, as was proposed by Governor Romney during the election campaign, an idea now endorsed by theWashington Post. Nonprofits are gravely concerned that a cap on itemized deductions would significantly reduce charitable contributions because such a cap for individuals would be consumed largely by deductions for mortgage interest and state/local taxes, leaving little or no room under the cap for discretionary gifts to the work of the charities. Nonprofits See Mixed Results in Ballot Measures On Election Day, Americans elected 6,034 state lawmakers and decided the outcome of 174 ballot measures, including several issues of concern to nonprofits related to state and local budgets, tax exemptions, and changes to sales, income, and estate taxes, among others. Michiganders rejected a proposal to prohibit new or additional taxes without a 2/3 majority vote. Oregon voted down a measure that would have phased out the state’s estate tax and eliminated that incentive for giving to charitable nonprofits. Californians voted in favor of temporary income and sales tax increases that will help fund public schools and community colleges, but rejected a measure that would have temporarily increased income taxes to help fund education and early childhood programs. Arizona voters rejected a measure that would have renewed a 2010 sales tax that dedicated funding to education, health, and human services programs. Minnesota voters rejected a proposal that could have blocked many voters through new identification requirements. Finally, Honolulu voters approved two amendments creating new funding opportunities that support nonprofit social service providers and disadvantaged populations. Taxes, Fees, and PILOTs Ticket Taxes: Rebuffed by local nonprofits that have so far refused to take money away from their own missions to make payments in lieu of taxes (PILOTs) to the city, the Mayor of Bethlehem, Pennsylvania is proposing a five percent ticket tax on many nonprofit arts groups. The tax would raise about $600,000 annually for the city, which is facing a $5 million shortfall. PILOTs: Elsewhere in Pennsylvania, nonprofits in Allegheny County (Pittsburgh) have refused to yield to demands to plug the county’s 2013 budget holes with PILOTs, according to a presentation by the County Controller. The official called the lack of contributions to the County one of the "areas of concern" in her financial status report. PILOTs: Letters sent by one Wisconsin mayor to 182 local churches and other nonprofit property owners requestingcontributions to the City were met with no response. The City’s letters asked nonprofits to effectively ignore the state law granting them a property tax exemption and instead pay money to the City by November 1 for the 2013 budget. Arkansas Coalition for Excellence | 200 River Market Avenue, Suite 100 | Little Rock, AR 72201 | 501.375.1223 |


Nonprofit Advocacy Resources Rules for Nonprofit Advocacy Center for Lobbying in the Public Interest Bolder Advocacy For News on Legislation Affecting Nonprofits National Council of Nonprofits The Nonprofit Quarterly The Chronicle of Philanthropy Stateline Arkansas House of Representatives Arkansas Senate Center for Civil Society Studies United States House of Representatives United States Senate Judicial News Alliance for Justice

Arkansas Coalition for Excellence | 200 River Market Avenue, Suite 100 | Little Rock, AR 72201 | 501.375.1223 |


RESOURCES AND OTHER LINKS TIP OF THE MONTH Reader’s Choice Award: Exempt vs. Non-Exempt By Melanie Lockwood Herman The results are in: “Classification Conundrum” is the most popular article on the Center’s website. This piece, updated just this week, offers soothing relief for a common source of heartburn among human resource professionals: Is employee X an exempt or non-exempt worker? Determining whether nonprofit staff members are eligible for overtime pay, continues to strain the brains, patience, and budgets of astute leaders and best-in-class organizations. According to a handful of Center clients, the topic is a sensitive issue that often causes internal squabbling in addition to anxiety. Here are a few pointers as you navigate the legal and regulatory guidelines pertaining to overtime pay and worker classification:

It is never appropriate to classify an employee as “exempt” from overtime pay simply because you can’t afford to pay overtime.  “Exempt” status should never be assigned to make an employee feel valued.  It is a good idea to let non-exempt workers know that they should seek and obtain approval before working overtime hours.  An employee who ignores your rule requiring advance approval for overtime may be disciplined; but, that discipline can never include withholding premium pay for actual overtime hours worked.  If your head is starting to hurt or there’s a knot in your stomach as you read this, it’s probably time to conduct an internal review of all positions in your nonprofit. Refer to the “Classification Conundrum” article as you review each position  description to determine whether it has been properly classified.  When in doubt, choose “non-exempt.” I invite you to visit “Classification Conundrum” online for our two-step process for settling the dispute you’re having at your nonprofit about which workers are exempt… and which are not. The updated article includes links to several helpful DOL fact sheets on this topic. If the pain you’re experiencing in your human resources function is severe or worsens in the weeks ahead, contact us to explore our approach to a limited scope risk assessment focused on HR, or sign up as an AFFILIATE member of the Center to enjoy pro bono RISK HELP™ throughout the year . We’re here to help. Melanie Lockwood Herman is Executive Director of the Nonprofit Risk Management Center. She welcomes your ideas about any risk management topic, suggestions for best-in-class risk management, and questions about the Center’s resources at or (202) 785-3891. The Center provides risk management tools and resources at and offers consulting assistance to organizations unwilling to leave their missions to chance.

Arkansas Coalition for Excellence | 200 River Market Avenue, Suite 100 | Little Rock, AR 72201 | 501.375.1223 |


TIP OF THE MONTH Responding to Comments and Protecting Content: Social Media Policy Basics Social media is a two-way conversation, so your policy should not just inform external communications—what your organization says, and how you say it—but how you deal with what people say to, and about, you. Creating and publishing content means it’s open to comments, both good and bad, and can be shared with other networks—often without your knowledge. How do you control your reputation and your brand? You could choose to disable comments on your Facebook page, but then you’d miss out on one of social media’s greatest benefits. Instead, develop a strategy for monitoring and responding to comments, both positive and negative. Who will respond? Will you do it public or take the discussion offline? Every comment is an opportunity to further craft your organization’s personality and reputation and build relationships. Responding thoughtfully can turn a bad situation into a positive “customer service” moment and publicly correct misinformation. Read more.

ESTABLISHING ENDOWMENTS Financial Stability as a Core Practice by Scott Stewart Most non-profit organizations traditionally rely upon gifts of money-- government or foundation grants, donations, contributions, tithes--to fund their operations and cover their obligations. They tend to use that money immediately to address financial needs pertinent to their missions. If they save money, they commonly do so to achieve short-term or mid-term goals (purchasing capital equipment, for example, or new construction). They often keep some money in financial institutions in the form of “rainy day” funds. Read more.

JOBS CENTER Membership AmeriCorps*VISTA– Arkansas Coalition for Excellence Executive Director– CASA of the 2nd Judicial District Associate Director of Marketing and PR– Arkansas Symphony Orchestra Assistant Director– Hearts and Hooves Executive Director– Northeast Arkansas Children’s Advocacy Center Create a JOBTARGET account on our site to post your organization’s open positions. ACE members post for free!

Arkansas Coalition for Excellence | 200 River Market Avenue, Suite 100 | Little Rock, AR 72201 | 501.375.1223 |


Thank you for reading this month’s edition of our newsletter. Questions or Comments? Contact us.

Stephanie Meincke, MSW President and CEO Emily Ingram, Vice President Rebecca Zimmermann, Membership & Communications Coordinator, AmeriCorps VISTA

Helping Nonprofits Help Arkansas

Located within the Charles A. Frueauff Foundation Offices 200 River Market Avenue, Suite 100 Little Rock, AR 72201 (501) 375-1223

November 2012 Newsletter  

Nonprofit Advocacy

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