Tags >> finances
Nov 24
2009

Small Business Administration Update

Posted by Bruce Robinson in Sonoma County , politics , planning , Petaluma , legislation , jobs , Ideas , government , finances , employment , education , economy , community , business , budget

Bruce Robinson

 

Small businesses in America could be an important engine to help drive economic recovery, according to a local advocacy group, but they need more help than they are currently getting from the federal Small Business Administration.

Chris Gunn, Communications Director for the American Small Business League  in Petaluma says the Obama economic team does not appear to recognize the importance of small businesses to the US economy any more than their predecessors  in the Bush Administration did.

Given the considerable number of small businesses in the country, Chris Gunn says they could be a formidable political force, if they came together to press for policies that would benefit them as a group.

One change at the SBA under the Obama administration has been the installation of Karen Mills (left)  as the agency’s new director. But Gunn is not convinced she genuinely has the interests of the nation’s smaller business owners at the forefront.

 

 

Nov 10
2009

B.I. Furlough Days

Posted by Bruce Robinson in Sonoma County , politics , policy , news , government , finances , employment , disability , community , business , budget

Bruce Robinson

Today  is a forced day off for some of the most dedicated workers in Sonoma County.

B.I clients are part of the workforce for Sonoma County Transit (below), the City of Healdsburg's Parks and Recreation Department, and mroe than 120 local businesses.

The forced furlough days—which were specified by the state, giving the affected agencies no flexibility in implementing them—are more than a financial hardship for the worker-clients who must stay home or find someplace else to go for the day, observes parent and BI board member Ken Maiolini.

Mary’s Pizza Shack employs teams of BI workers at several locations around Sonoma County. Vince Albano, CEO and Vice President for Mary’s, is trying to soften the effects of the furloughs for those workers, who he says contribute a lot to the workplace.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Oct 08
2009

The Immigrant Paradox

Posted by Bruce Robinson in youth , students , speaker , Santa Rosa , resources , poverty , policy , parks , nonprofit orgs , medicine , jobs , immigration , housing , healthcare , Health , government , food , finances , families , events , employment , education , economy , community , children , California

Bruce Robinson

What segment of California’s population is healthiest?  It’s probably not what you would think.

As Alameda County’s Public Health Officer, Dr. Anthony Iton (left) directed efforts to correlate data from death certificates, parole offices, income reports from the national census and other sources and see where they overlapped in his county. And he found a high correspondence to the areas where poverty is most prevalent.

Taking their cue from the social support systems that many immigrant families enjoy, Dr. Iton suggests that public health departments also instigate informal gatherings of residents in impoverished neighborhoods, as an additional tool for improving their collective well-being.

Dr.  Iton  also co-authored this report (pdf, 87 pages) detailing the relative medical and social factors that shape health outcomes among the population of Alameda County. Similar results apply in Sonoma County and much of California.

 

Oct 06
2009

The SSU Foundation

Posted by Bruce Robinson in students , Sonoma County , Rohnert Park , research , planning , nonprofit orgs , news , legislation , government , finances , education , budget

Bruce Robinson

The closely guarded internal financial workings of the Sonoma State Academic Foundation may be about to see the light of public review.

Robert Karlsrud, dean emeritus of the SSU School of Social Sciences, is concerned that the administration of the Sonoma State University Academic Foundation is concentrated in just a few top officials at the school, and particularly that the finances of the campus and its foundation are directed by the same individual:  Laurence Furukawa-Schleret, SSU's Vice President for Administration & Finance and Chief Financial Officer.

The high priority given to fund-raising for the construction of the Green Music Center by the Arminana administration has rankled many on campus, especially as the cost of the structure sopared to $120 million. The partially completed building, seen here earlier in the construction process, still needs around $20 million to be finished, and even then, says Karlsrud, it may be a fiscal drai for many years to follow.

SB 218, by San Francisco State Senator Leeland Yee, was prompted in part by the public disclosure of the SSU Foundation’s loans to a former board member. The bill has passed the state legislature and is now awaiting the governor’s signature to become law.  Dean Karlsrud says the campus community is also waiting to see if the measure has any real teeth.

Karlsrud's detailed critique of the Foundation's fiscal operations was published online by the  Empire Report.

 

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