Friday, February 19, 2010

NYS Parks and Historic Sites Proposed to Close: Broome and Tioga Impacted

The Office of Parks, Recreation, and Historic Preservation (OPRHP) today put forward a recommended list of closures and service reductions in order to achieve its 2010-11 agency savings target and help address the State's historic fiscal difficulties.

Governor David A. Paterson issued the following statement:

"New York faces an historic fiscal crisis of unprecedented magnitude. It has demanded many difficult but necessary decisions to help ensure the fiscal integrity of our State. The unfortunate reality of closing an $8.2 billion deficit is that there is less money available for many worthy services and programs. In an environment when we have to cut funding to schools, hospitals, nursing homes, and social services, no area of State spending, including parks and historic sites, could be exempt from reductions. We cannot mortgage our State's financial future through further gimmicks or avoidance behavior. Spending cuts, however difficult, are needed in order to put New York on the road to fiscal recovery. Going forward through the budget process, I look forward to a productive dialogue with the Legislature on parks and historic sites, as well as other issues."

OPRHP Commissioner Carol Ash issued the following statement:

"The 2010-11 Executive Budget included reductions to every area of State spending. As such, the Office of Parks, Recreation, and Historic Preservation has today put forward proposed closures and service reductions to meet its agency savings target. These actions were not recommended lightly, but they are necessary to address our State's extraordinary fiscal difficulties."


A fact sheet on the proposed closures and service reductions is included below:

The Office of Parks, Recreation, and Historic Preservation (OPRHP) today put forward a list of closures and service reductions in order to achieve its proposed 2010-11 agency savings target and help address the State's historic fiscal difficulties. As part of a comprehensive plan to close an $8.2 billion deficit, the 2010-11 Executive Budget included necessary cost reductions to each executive State agency, as well as cuts to education, health care, social services, and every other area of State spending.

OPRHP's plan includes the closure of 41 parks and 14 historic sites, and service reductions at 23 parks and 1 historic site.

The plan also assumes $4 million in park and historic site fee increases that will be identified at a later date, and the use of $5 million in funds from the Environmental Protection Fund (EPF) to finance OPRHP operations. These two actions were part of the 21-day amendments to the Executive Budget and are intended to reduce the number of parks and historic sites subject to closures and service reductions.

Specific recommended closures and service reductions are detailed here.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Southern Tier Opportunity Coalition stops paying its executive director

The Press & Sun-Bulletin reported that Southern Tier Opportunity Coalition has stopped paying its executive director.

John Hayek, executive director of STOC since 2005, is now working as an unpaid volunteer of the nonprofit organization, choosing to remain active with the group because he believes in its mission, he said. The change occurred several weeks ago.

STOC formally announced its formation in 2003 with the goal of stimulating economic development in the region using help from members of the academic and private sector. The group's previous executive director was Howard Lucy, who served in the position for about two years.

Diana Bendz, STOC president, is now also acting executive director of the organization, she said. "The economy hit us ... we lost dollars from our membership," she said. Read more here.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

2 Free Webinars Offered by IRS on the 990

The NY Council of Nonprofits' national partner, the National Council of Nonprofits, is offering two FREE webinars for you and your board members!

Get Ready, Get Set, Go! IRS Filing Requirements for Charitable Nonprofits
Two national webinars: February 23 and March 23, 2010

Register Now

Are you prepared for this year's tax filing deadline? Did you know that tax-exempt organizations could have their status revoked for not filing the annual Form 990? The National Council of Nonprofits will host two free webinars presented by the IRS for nonprofit organizations to learn about the resources available and answer questions about filing your IRS Form 990.

These webinars will include:
  • Critical steps to take now in order to protect and preserve your tax exemption.
  • Review of the filing requirements for nonprofit, tax-exempt organizations, and the consequences of not filing (or filing an incomplete) Form 990-series return. Tax-exempt organizations now stand to lose their tax-exempt status if they do not file the Form 990, 990-EZ, or 990-N (e-postcard) for three consecutive years-these revocations will begin in 2010).

"Learn from the Experts: What Forms Must Nonprofit, Tax-Exempt Organizations File to Meet IRS Requirements and Preserve Tax Exempt Status?"

Tuesday, February 23
3:30 pm - 4:30 pm Eastern

  • What forms are tax-exempt organizations required to file with the IRS annually?
  • What information is required to be reported on the forms?
  • Why your organization may need to file NOW, so that it won't lose its tax-exempt status
  • How to file complete, accurate returns to avoid IRS penalties.

There is no charge for nonprofit organizations or their board members for these webinars. Advance registration is required by February 22, 2010.

"Hear from the IRS: What The IRS Has Learned After One Year With the Redesigned Form 990"

Tuesday, March 23
3:30 pm - 4:30pm Eastern

  • What trends has the IRS observed in the first season of redesigned Form 990 filing?
  • What mistakes are most commonly being made by nonprofits on the redesigned Form 990?
  • What can a nonprofit do to streamline the filing process?
  • What are the answers to frequently asked questions about completing the 990?

There is no charge for nonprofit organizations or their board members for these webinars. Advance registration is required by March 22, 2010.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

ED Group Program and Trainings Announced

SCNY ED Group Program Set for March 16th

The March 16th Program Meeting will feature a business meeting followed by a special FREE training, Creating a Powerful Team: Executive Directors Working with their Boards, presented by the New York Council of Nonprofits. Many organizations struggle with defining the boundaries of Executive Director authority and establishing appropriate parameters for Executive Director and Board of Director roles. This session, designed for Executive Directors, will address recommended roles and strategies in Executive Director and Board relations and discuss the interplay of organizational culture and commonly held "best practices". The session will help Executive Directors clarify and address with their Boards their role in board development and the balance of responsibilities in areas such as financial oversight, personnel matters, fundraising, and community relations.

This workshop is supported by The Stewart W. and Willma C. Hoyt Foundation and The Community Foundation for South Central New York.


Date: Tuesday, March 16th
Time: 9:30 am- General meeting
10:00am to 12:00pm- Workshop
Cost: FREE to nonprofit directors
Location: Broome Public Safety Building
Academy Classroom #1
155 Lt. VanWinkle Drive
Binghamton, NY 13905

Announcing the 2010 Southern Tier Capacity Building Program
Improving Nonprofit Capacity & Effectiveness through Assessment Workshop
Offered by NYCON CEO Doug Sauer

Nonprofits of all types and sizes are under significant stress on a number of fronts that threatens to reduce our infrastructure and capacity to meet community needs through effective and sustainable services. Theses challenges can seem overwhelming and beyond our control and organizations are finding it difficult to know where to start making the organizational changes necessary. Organizational assessment, whether comprehensive or in strategically selected areas, is the foundation or basis for executing informed and effective strategies. Simply put, your leadership needs to know and understand your organizational condition and viability before expecting meaningful changes, based on internally-driven priorities, to occur.


Date: Thursday, April 15th, 2010
Time: 9:30am to 3:30pm
A break for lunch will be provided. Participants are responsible for their own lunch.
Cost: Free to nonprofit directors, board and staff (Limit 2 per organization)
Location: Broome County Public Library
Decker Room
185 Court Street
Binghamton, NY 13901

This workshop, supported by The Stewart W. and Willma C. Hoyt Foundation and The Community Foundation for South Central New York, provides an overview of what an assessment is and is not, along with the various methods, tools, indicators and processes for conducting an assessment; whether it be a self-administered or provided with outside assistance or consultation. Participants will also learn and discuss nonprofit assessment examples and receive assessment tools for use in their own organizations.

Participants will qualify to apply for the 2010 Southern Tier Capacity Building Mini-Grant Program, as well as special assessment support offered directly by the New York Council of Nonprofits. The Mini-Grant Program and special assessment assistance are supported by The Stewart W. and Willma C. Hoyt Foundation, The Community Foundation for South Central New York, and Conrad and Virginia Klee Foundation.

State Board Training Consortium's Achieving Excellence in Governance in BINGHAMTON!

Click here to register online
Are you a nonprofit receiving funding from OASAS, DOH AIDS Institute and Center for Community Health , OMRDD, OMH or OCFS? These state agencies, in collaboration with NYCON, have created a free Board Training program!

SBTC: Understanding Your Legal Obligations as a Nonprofit Board Member
Thursday, April 08, 2010 from 1:00 PM - 4:00 PM (ET)

SBTC: Human Resource Issues for Nonprofit Boards
Thursday, April 08, 2010 at 5:30 PM - Friday, April 09, 2010 at 8:30 PM (ET)

SBTC: Nonprofit Accounting Basics for Board Members
Friday, April 09, 2010 from 9:00 AM - 12:00 PM (ET)

SBTC: The New Form 990: A Focus on Board Governance
Friday, April 09, 2010 from 1:00 PM - 4:00 PM (ET)

Looking for new ideas for employee benefits?
Let NYCON help you create an extensive, affordable benefits package that is easy to comprehend and manage! Learn more about the ways in which we help over 1,000 nonprofits just like yours with Health Insurance, Dental Insurance, Disability Insurance, Flexible Savings Accounts, Life Insurance, Retirement Benefits, Unemployment Savings Program, and Workers Comp. Contact us for more information. Click here for a flyer.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Unemployment costs increasing across US

CNN Money featured the following article on rising unemployment expenses throughout the US. As the article relates:

Employers are getting hit with a massive tax hike at a time when they can least afford it.

Companies in at least 35 states will have to fork over more in unemployment insurance taxes this year, according to the National Association of State Workforce Agencies.

The median increase will be 27.5%. And employers in places such as Hawaii and Florida could see levies skyrocket more than ten-fold.

Many of these hikes happened automatically as prolonged joblessness triggered state laws governing their unemployment insurance systems. But at least seven states voted to raise their taxable wage bases, the level of income subject to unemployment tax. And another 10 are looking at upping the wage bases or tax rates.

The states are scrambling to restore their unemployment insurance trust funds, which cover claims.

State trust funds have been decimated by the Great Recession, forcing a record 26 states to borrow a total of more than $30 billion from the federal government. The numbers are expected to grow to 40 states borrowing $90 billion by 2012, said George Wentworth, policy analyst at the National Employment Law Project. Read more here. The state by state unemployment rate listing is available here for 2009. NY's rate in 2008 was 6.3 and in 2009 increased to 8.6.

Looking for Unemployment Insurance assistance? Contact NYCON for information on our Unemployment Savings Program. You will receive a free cost savings analysis, which will tell you how much money you will save. We will advise you on your best option, including if you’re better off staying in the state tax system. Contact us with your questions.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Executive Director Job: Binghamton Zoo at Ross Park

The Executive Director reports directly to the Board of Directors and serves as the Chief Executive Officer of The Binghamton Zoo at Ross Park.

The Executive Director is responsible for the comprehensive development, implementation, administration, operation and evaluation of the zoo.
Consistent achievement in the following job elements is expected: long range planning, financial objectives and management, fund development, building and grounds maintenance, volunteer development and management, public relations, animal management and care, zoo exhibits, zoo personnel, community relations, and the overall health and well-being of the organization.

Resumes should be emailed to Ron Greene @ for consideration and review.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Binghamton University MPA Program

Dear Friend:

We are at the time of year when the MPA Program at BU is considering students for next fall. You or members of your staff may want to consider enrolling in our program. Please forward this information to anyone you know who may want to consider the MPA Program.

The MPA Program offers valuable opportunities for public and nonprofit sector professionals in our region. The MPA Program is a good choice for public or nonprofit sector professionals who are interested in developing new skills to position themselves for roles with greater responsibility in the future. The Master of Public Administration degree is a marketable professional degree which can increase your earning potential.

Binghamton University's program:

Prepares students for management careers in public and nonprofit organizations.

Has an energetic faculty committed to students, teaching, and community service.

Works with the community to address administrative and policy challenges.

Offers evening classes.

For more information, please contact Professor Kristina Lambright at