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2015 September

for new & continuing arts programming ... and more!

As Mary Vilbon was exiting the building, we were hard at work on an application to the Massachusetts Cultural Council for monies to support existing and new arts programming that will attract visitors to the region. We're pleased to announce we were awarded a two-year grant to support our efforts! Thanks to Mary for her guidance and to board member Whit Sanford for hours spent crafting the winning proposal. Look for more details next month!

Beginning October 1, 2015, merchants should be aware of new rules regarding credit card purchases.

After October 1, you will be liable for any counterfeit smart card transactions (credit cards embedded with the EMV chip). This is what they call a “liability shift.” Since having the EMV terminal could have theoretically prevented the fraud, the liability is now on acquirers and merchants (You).

The Timeline for EMV Chip Card Liability Shift in the US:

  • October 1, 2015 – Visa, MasterCard, American Express and Discover liability shift for POS terminals.
  • October 1, 2016 – MasterCard liability shift for ATMs.
  • October 1, 2017 – Visa, MasterCard, American Express and Discover liability shift for pay-at-pump gas stations, as well as for Visa and AmEx at ATMs.

So, as you can see, October 2015 is the big date most merchants need to keep in mind. By that point, your processor will probably have already forced you to upgrade in order to protect itself against fraud liability.

The SBA is offering a webinar on this topic next Tuesday - See below for information; there's a link below for registration.

Payments Fraud Trends and the U.S. EMV Card Migration: What You Need to Know

Tuesday, September 22, 2015
2:00 PM Eastern Time

Financial institutions and their customers are targets of ever-evolving fraud schemes. This is a concern for small businesses seeking to protect their organization's payment transactions. In this webinar you will learn:

  • Payment instruments that are most vulnerable to fraud schemes
  • Methods and risk management services financial institutions are using to sharpen defenses against fraud attacks
  • Payment fraud trends
  • Fraud-fighting methods and tips to avoid victimization from fraudsters

You will also get an update on the U.S. migration from magnetic strip to EMV cards and what it means for your small business. Specifically, you will learn how the October 2015 card liability shift may impact your business and why the EMV migration may lead to increased losses from card-not-present fraud.

About the presenters:

Katy Jacob is a Payments Information Consultant with the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis in the Payments Information and Outreach Office; she has more than fifteen years of experience in the financial services and payments industries. In her role at the Minneapolis Fed, she specializes in research and strategy related to emerging payments, payments fraud and issues related to payment standards. Katy also staffs the Remittance Coalition, which is comprised of more than 400 industry partners seeking to promote electronic payments and remittance exchange among businesses.

Mary Hughes, Senior Payments Information Consultant at the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, provides analytical and research support to senior managers engaged in payment policy and related issues. She assists in coordinating the Federal Reserve’s participation in payment standards organizations, serving as the Chair of the Accredited Standards Committee X9C Corporate Banking Subcommittee. She is the Federal Reserve representative to the EMV Migration Forum and actively monitors developments in the implementation of chip cards in the U.S.

Click here to register or for more information.

*from www.merchantmaverick.com & the SBA

The Arts Extension Service (AES) is pleased to announce that thanks to an award from the Community Foundation of Western Massachusetts, they are able to bring their two-day Artist-in-Business Trainings to Easthampton, Greenfield, and Springfield in 2015-2016! The training schedule is:

Springfield: Friday, October 16 - Saturday, October 17, 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. at the UMass Center at Springfield.

Greenfield: Saturday, January 9 - Sunday, January 10, 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. at Greenfield Community College (SNOW DATE: Saturday, January 30 - Sunday, January 31).

Easthampton: Saturday, March 19 - Sunday, March 20, 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. at Eastworks (SNOW DATE: Saturday, April 2 - Sunday, April 3).

In the Artist-in-Business training, artists learn best business and marketing practices and how to apply them to their own businesses. Through a dynamic combination of small group exercises and one-on-one work, artists learn about and create elements of their business and marketing plans, leaving with concrete next steps to build their unique business. With a curriculum based on AES's national research, program topics include target markets, sales, pricing, arts funding, finance for artists, and more. Participating artists have reported a 99% satisfaction rate.

These trainings are funded by the Community Foundation of Western Massachusetts, with additional support from the Springfield Cultural Council and the Massachusetts Cultural Council. The trainings will be offered in partnership with Art for the Soul Gallery, Easthampton City Arts+, Eastworks, Greenfield Community College, Springfield Museums, and the UMass Center at Springfield.

Are you an artist interested in registering for one of these trainings? Click here for more details. To register, email or call 413-545-2360

For Entrepreneurs--

The SBA Business Smart Toolkit is a ready-to-use workshop toolkit developed jointly by National Association for Government Guaranteed Lenders and SBA. The workshop lays the groundwork for helping new and aspiring entrepreneurs launch a business idea and understand the steps to building a business that is credit ready. The Business Smart Toolkit is a part of SBA’s "My Brother’s Keeper Initiative" to provide resources for underserved communities.

The information is laid out simply in three modules.

ready

The three modules will focus on:

  1. READY: Basics of Business startup
  2. SET: Essentials of becoming credit-ready
  3. GO: How and where to find additional small business support and educational resources.

Each module will have approximately 60‐90 minutes of presentation material. The modules can be presented in a one-day [or multiple day] workshop(s), depending on what is best suited for the individual community.

The toolkit is available online for download at SBA’s website and includes:

  • Introductory video
  • PowerPoint presentation
  • Customizable template to insert local small business support resources
  • Instructor Notes/guide
  • Supporting worksheets, links, etc.

Who is it for? The toolkit is designed for local community organizations whose constituents are interested in starting a business but do not know where to begin. The curriculum will allow the local organization to provide their constituents with enough basic knowledge to get them on the right track in starting and connecting them to local resources—along with providing further support along their entrepreneurial journey. The toolkit and instructor guide are written at a level so that a community volunteer can feel comfortable presenting the information.

Why is it needed? This toolkit will help ensure we are providing America's current and aspiring entrepreneurs with the most comprehensive and current support possible. We recognize that community leaders may want to provide business and financial information to their constituents but not know where to find this information in an easy to use format. The Business Smart Toolkit will provide that support.

For more information about setting up a workshop for your community, contact your SBA District Office: david.polatin@sba.gov

Applications Available for ARTeens After School Program at The Art Garden.

ARTeens is free for Franklin County teens. Program begins October 27.
Applications due October 9.

ARTeens is a weekly, after school program at The Art Garden in Shelburne Falls. Middle and high school teens interested in making art should apply by October 9th. Applications are available online at www.theartgarden.org and at local high schools.

ARTeens has three entry/exit points each year: fall, winter and spring. A six-week, fall session begins on Tuesday, October 27. Arrival times vary depending on where teens are coming from. We begin when everyone has arrived (between 2:30 – 3:30) and end at 6pm. ARTeens provides an opportunity for teens to cultivate an art practice in The Art Garden’s supportive, intergenerational studio. With an emphasis on personal responsibility and self- direction, teens explore and critique the world around them, develop their own voices, and share their ideas. ARTeens offers a sense of community while nurturing uniqueness and engagement in a diverse and non-judgmental group. ARTeens is facilitated by working artists: Jane Beatrice Wegscheider and Phyllis Labanowski.

Now in its third year, the 2015-2016 ARTeens program is free to Franklin County teens thanks to the generosity of our community, a grant from the Art Angels, and grants from the Franklin Fund and the Franklin Fund #2 at the Community Foundation of Western Massachusetts. Spaces not filled by residents will be open to teens from other counties on a tuition basis.

In the past two years, 35 teens (from 15 towns, three public schools and home schooling) have participated in ARTeens. Most teens participate in multiple sessions. Teens enjoy the freedom to express themselves and direct their own art-making. They are creative thinkers and love art. Each weekly meeting provides extended art-making time and individualized instruction in a studio filled with professional art supplies. Throughout the year, teens can participate in The Art Garden’s public art projects, community exhibits and intergenerational events. ARTeens culminates with a teen exhibition (open to all area teens).

ARTeens encourages teens to develop their understanding of themselves as engaged artists, and to envision roles for themselves in the world, that use their artistic skills and creative imaginations.

For more information, please call The Art Garden at (413)-625-2782.

Thursday, 24 September 2015, 8:00am-05:00pm

Applicants to VVM's Greenfield Mentorship Program are provided an intensive mentorship Pitch Camp, and anyone is invited to attend. The entrepreneurs will pitch their companies, using slides, and receive lovingly critical feedback.

This event is open to anyone to attend, but only applicants to the VVM Greenfield Mentorship Program are invited to pitch.

Questions? admin@valleyventurementors.org

Location: 324 Wells Street, Greenfield

REGISTER HERE

WEBINAR: October 1st, 10-11 AM EST

Don't wait until the last minute to plan your fundraising campaigns!

Investing in an hour or two of planning followed by careful implementation increases your potential to reach more donors.

Hosted by the Community Foundation of Western Massachusetts and led by Kivi Leroux Miller, this webinar will help you put together a fundraising campaign plan that you can use for your end-of-the-year appeal and even for #givingtuesday. We will follow-up with more valuable resources in the coming weeks. One hour can make a year-long difference. Please register even if this time and date does not work with your schedule. If you register, you will get a copy of this training along with any resources.

ALSO: Some of you might be interested in an additional resource for grant writing. The Grantsmanship Center is offering an in-depth training program from Nov 2 - 6.

For more information, questions, etc: capacity@communityfoundation.org

Shelburne Cultural Council

The Shelburne Cultural Council has set an October 15, 2015 postmark deadline for organizations, schools and individuals to apply for grants that support cultural activities in the community.

According to Council spokesperson Daniel Lieberman, these grants can support a variety of artistic projects and activities in Shelburne, including exhibits, festivals, field trips, short-term artist residencies or performances in schools, workshops and lectures.

The Shelburne Cultural Council is part of a network of 329 Local Cultural Councils serving all 351 cities and towns in the Commonwealth. The LCC Program is the largest grassroots cultural funding network in the nation, supporting thousands of community-based projects in the arts, sciences and humanities every year. The state legislature provides an annual appropriation to the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency, which then allocates funds to each community.

This year, the Shelburrne Cultural Council will distribute about $4,400.00 in grants.

For specific guidelines and complete information on the Shelburne Cultural Council, contact Daniel Lieberman at 413 489 1818 and daniel@daniellieberman.org. Application forms and more information about the Local Cultural Council Program are available online. Application forms are also available at Shelburne Town Hall, 51 Bridge Street, Shelburne Falls, MA, 01370.

Deerfield #3

Starting Tuesday, September 8, 2015 TransCanada will have a contractor starting work at Deerfield #3 dam for approximately one month. They will be performing work there during the day and will have cement trucks, cranes, and other small equipment on site. They will try to keep noise to a minimum and will be working from 0700 to 1630. There will be a storage box and some equipment stored on site and they will need most of the parking lot during the day.

From Matthew Cole
Community Relations
(603) 498-4421 cell

 

You are invited to pitch in and help promote the wonders of our region. There are several ways to get involved:

Just want to help one day/one time? "Moonlight Magic" needs some "can-do" folks to help run the event. Managing it, and the thousands who will flock to Shelburne Falls the day after Thanksgiving, doesn't just magically "happen" - It takes time, dedication, and some reliable volunteers. Get in the holiday spirit by helping make it a success!

Would you like to work with new friends to make our events great? Join our events committee! The committee meets the first Tuesday of the month at 8:30 in the Information Center, 75 Bridge Street in Shelburne Falls.

Apply to join our governing board, we're in need of a few stalwarts to guide the organization, create strategies, and help implement the plans. Interested? C'mon, you know you want to... The board meets monthly on the second Friday of the month - plus members of the board contribute time and energy in other ways.

Or maybe you'd like to make a few phone calls from time to time or stuff some envelopes or organize a file cabinet. Office help -- regularly or once in a while -- would be most appreciated.

Interested? Just give us a call, shoot an email, or drop by the office (best to call first - 413-625-2526). We'd love to see you and get you started!

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You will soon be able to join online. Until then, call us and we can help you get started. 413-625-2526

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