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CalNonprofits is...
...a statewide alliance of over 10,000 organizations that brings nonprofits together to advocate for the communities we serve.
 
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…to increase our collective voice in Sacramento and benefit from exclusive and discounted goods and services, including insurance just for nonprofits.
 

Latest News for Nonprofits

Nonprofits call for responsible practices

As a "chamber of commerce" for the nonprofit community, we have heard a great many concerns from our members about crowdfunding platforms, and we have also been involved over the past year in discussions about potential crowdfunding regulations in California with legislators, the Attorney General's office, and crowdfunding companies.

Today, we are introducing CalNonprofits’ new Principles for Responsible Crowdfunding.

These Principles are meant to act as a guide for emerging legislation and as a call to you – the crowdfunding platforms – to act in a fair, public-spirited way. They are being sent directly to the CEOs of ten crowdfunding platforms, to members of the California state legislature and to California’s newly elected governor, Gavin Newsom. We welcome your comments and feedback on the Principles.

Background
Crowdfunding – broad, public, online fundraising campaigns – has emerged as an important vehicle for both donors and nonprofits. Crowdfunding campaigns bring causes to the attention of wide audiences who find it a convenient way to make donations, typically of modest amounts. Individuals also use crowdfunding campaigns to encourage their friends to donate to various nonprofit or community efforts. For nonprofits, crowdfunding is also a new way to reach out to prospective donors and can provide a significant revenue stream along with an opportunity to raise awareness and increase engagement with their cause and programs.

At the same time, as the crowdfunding industry has evolved concerns have also arisen, including:

• A proliferation of scam artists purporting to be legitimate nonprofits;
• Concerns by donors about undisclosed fees, uncertainty about tax-deductibility, and confusion about disclosure of their identity;
• Nonprofit complaints about slow fund disbursement, undisclosed fees, and inconsistent – or missing – information about donors; and
• Questions about the implications for existing Donor-Advised Funds (DAFs) and for possible DAF regulation in the future as crowdfunding companies reconfigure their giving platforms as DAFs.

The crowdfunding industry has sponsored legislation in California to clarify what is legally permissible, and over the coming years we anticipate more state and federal policy efforts to address concerns that are bound to emerge as this industry and these practices mature. The principles by which crowdfunding should be operated and regulated will evolve as well. We propose the following Principles to define responsible and ethical practices that will help nonprofits, donors and the industry engage in these online activities in ways that are productive and ensure consistency with long-established laws that strive to balance the interests of stakeholders.

Download the new Principles for Responsible Crowdfunding.

Photo credit: ThinkBusiness.ie

New type of retirement plan open to nonprofits: Join our CalSavers Webinar on November 1st and get your questions answered!

Starting next July, the state of California is launching CalSavers, a new retirement program that will enable employers (including nonprofits!) to provide their employees with a payroll deduction Individual Retirement Account (IRA) at no cost to the employer or taxpayer.

We already know that more than half of nonprofits offer some kind of retirement plan to their employees (a much higher percentage than for-profits). If you already have a plan, CalSavers isn't for you. But if you don't, CalSavers will become mandatory over the next three years.

To find out what CalSavers means for nonprofits and their employees, CalNonprofits hosted a webinar with Katie Selenski, the executive director of CalSavers in November 2018.  A recording of the webinar is now available on CalNonprofits Webinar Compilation page: CalSavers Retirement Plan is Coming! Here is what you NEED to know.

More background on CalSavers
CalSavers was created by legislation in 2016 (that CalNonprofits supported), to create a retirement plan for the 7.5 million employees in California whose employers do not offer a retirement program. The lack of a program like CalSavers has resulted in more than 75% of California’s low and moderate income retires relying exclusively on Social Security for their retirement income, creating significant economic hardships for them.

CalSavers is a voluntary workplace IRA program, designed to be simple and portable from job to job. Under state law, businesses with five or more employees will need to either offer a retirement savings vehicle, or register for CalSavers. This requirement will phase in over a three-year period, with larger employers having to meet it sooner.

CalSavers is a good option for nonprofit employers to consider (if they don’t already have a retirement plan). There are zero fees for employers; since CalSavers is not an employer sponsored plan, employers will have no fiduciary liability, and it will be administratively easy for employers to facilitate. For more information about the plan, visit: https://www.treasurer.ca.gov/scib/ or download this CalSavers fact sheet.

Halloween is tomorrow, but you know what’s even scarier? Some people may not vote next week— unless they hear from a nonprofit they trust!

Here’s 5 ways your nonprofit can help make next week’s election a success:

1. Encourage people to vote

One easy way? Print out this poster and tape it up in your waiting area, office kitchen, or by the water cooler. If your organization has the capacity, offer to provide rides to polls for those who need them.

Another easy way to remind people to vote is to print out these “I work (or volunteer) at a nonprofit and I vote” stickers and share them with your colleagues to raise awareness.

Want more tips on voter education and turn-out? Download our 2 page handout: 12 Quick Tips to Help People Vote.

2. Share nonpartisan voting resources

In person, on your website, or via social media- here’s two we suggest:

Voter’s Edge: Find out about local and state candidates and ballot measures — and who is funding their campaigns. Plus, if you put in your address and zip code, it will show you a sample ballot to see what you’ll be voting on, and where your polling location is. 

CalMatters 2018 Voter Guide: Check out their "Gimme Props" interactive guide to ballot measures, and their one minute video explanations for each ballot measure.

3) Post your position on ballot measures 

If your nonprofit has a position- for or against- a ballot measure, make sure to get the word out about it. Speaking of...Here's our positions on two key ballot measures: CalNonprofits Says Yes on Prop 2, and No on Prop 5

4) Vote by mail? Don’t miss the deadline!

A little more than half of Californians now vote-by-mail. Your ballot must be postmarked on or before Election Day and received by your county elections office no later than 3 days after Election Day. As an alternative, you can bring your vote-by-mail ballot to any polling place between 7:00AM and 8:00PM on Election Day. More info is available here.

5) Missed the voter registration deadline? You can still vote!

The Secretary of State’s office has more information about how to vote using Conditional Voter Registration.

When nonprofits use our voting power, we advance our missions, make our voices heard and change the world for the better!

A new study by Nonprofit VOTE looked at people under 30 who registered to vote or who signed a voter pledge card because a nonprofit asked them to. They found that nonprofits not only engaged a younger, more diverse electorate but that they also significantly increased the likelihood of those voters showing up on election day and voting.

Image credit: Thanks to the CalCon2018 convention attendees who posed in front of our Vote With Your Mission banner! More photos from the convention are available here.
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Webinar: Getting the Most out of CalNonprofits Membership
Christina Dragonetti, Outreach and Communications Director, will provide a short introduction to CalNonprofits membership -- and all the ways your organization can save time and money when you join. Open to members and not-yet members.
Thursday, Dec 13th
Click here for more information.