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nonprofit news and events

Do You Have an Impact Culture? Via Social Impact Architects

I just love the ancient parable about the elephant. Six blind men were asked to describe an elephant by touching its body parts. The first man felt its side and described the elephant as a wall, the second man touched its tusk and thought it was a spear, the third man felt its trunk and was confident it was a snake, the fourth touched the knee and believed it was a tree, the fifth felt the ear and thought it was a fan and, finally, the sixth held the tail and assumed the elephant was a rope. None of the blind men was wrong in his analysis because each was perfectly describing the body part he touched and felt.

The problem came from their limited perception – they believed that they understood the situation, which led each of them to a mistaken conclusion. They missed the big picture – they were petting an elephant! The same applies to making data-driven decisions. When we have limited data and information, we don’t get the whole picture. And, the same is true in reverse – often when you get the big picture, you miss out on all the parts that go into its creation.

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IRS: Audit Technique Guides (ATGs) for Exempt Organizations

Audit Technique Guides (ATGs) help IRS examiners during audits of specific types of organizations exempt from federal income tax. While ATGs are designed to provide guidance for IRS employees, they’re also useful to the staffs and governing boards of exempt organizations, as well as the tax practitioners who work with them. ATGs recommend specific examination techniques, explain specialized business practices and terminology, and explore issues common to certain types of exempt organizations.

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Texas Association of Nonprofit Organizations – Last Chance to Save on 2018 Unemployment Insurance Costs!

Texas Association of Nonprofit Organizations partnered with First Nonprofit Group (FNG) to provide members with cost-saving unemployment programs. Since 2008, FNG has helped its Texas customers save over $4.4 million dollars! If your organization is currently paying state unemployment taxes (SUTA)*, FNG may be able to save you as much as 40% off your annual costs.

…but time is running out!

Texas Workforce Commission enforces a December 1st deadline to participate in FNG’s unemployment programs. Start your due diligence now so that you’re all set by the state deadline! To ensure a seamless transition into our programs, FNG staff will process all necessary paperwork.

TANO members receive a 20% discount on their one-time enrollment fee!

Request a free, no-obligation evaluation on your costs.

The FNG application process is simple: To find out how much money you can save, request a free savings quote here.

* Already self-insured/reimbursing?

FNG programs minimize the risk associated with being a self-insured employer, provide a fixed annual cost and remove the uncertainty of your exposure. Additional customer benefits include:

  • professional unemployment claims administration
  • stand-alone excess loss insurance for individual use
  • discounted background services
  • cyber monitoring alert

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Can Nonprofits Lobby? The Answer is YES!

Many nonprofits still believe they cannot lobby. This is one of the most pervasive myths within the sector. However, Social Impact Architects is setting the record straight on this question – “Can Nonprofits Lobby?” The answer is YES, albeit with a string or two attached. While the Johnson Amendment does restrict nonprofits’ ability to engage in direct partisan activity, e.g., endorsing or contributing to political candidates, it does not restrict their ability to participate in public policy. Charitable organizations can and should advocate around mission-driven issues that impact our communities and our nation. First, tax-exempt public charities (not private foundations) can engage in lobbying if it is not a “substantial part” of the organization’s activities, according to federal rules. Second, these organizations can engage in unlimited advocacy efforts to educate legislators and their staff on their cause. The bottom line is, nonprofits can lobby and advocate their positions, but they must monitor their efforts and properly track time and expenditures of lobbying efforts to ensure they stay within the law.

To read the full article by Social Impact Architects, click here.

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Retain Donors, Raise Money

Whatever the size of your nonprofit, it is important to offer a monthly giving program for donors. Monthly donors contribute more money over time and help strengthen your nonprofits financial stability. The DonorPerfect Fundraising Growth Platform can help improve donor retention and raise more money in the future.

DonorPerfect is offering a free monthly giving starter kit to help your nonprofit retain donors.

In this kit, you will learn:

  • 5 reasons why you should start a monthly giving program
  • How to convince your board to start a recurring donor program
  • 5 essential steps for creating and growing a recurring donor program
  • Once you finish, you’ll have everything in place to begin and grow your recurring gifts program.

Click here to download the monthly giving starter kit

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Center for Public Policy Priorities Is Seeking Paid Summer Interns in Austin

Don’t miss your chance to join the CPPP family! Center for Public Policy Priorities is hiring full-time paid interns to start in June. Candidates must be currently enrolled graduate or undergraduate students. The deadline to apply is this Friday, April 21!

See the full postings for details. Apply by Friday or spread the word! Join the team, and help make Texas the best state for hard-working people and their families

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CFRE Refresher Course DFW May 18

AFP is offering a refresher course for CFRE certification in Dallas. CFRE certification adds value to your contribution to your employers, clients and constituents. In addition, the AFP Compensation and Benefits Study consistently reports that CFREs receive higher compensation than those who do not hold the CFRE credential. If you are planning to take the CFRE exam, make plans to take this one-day course, brought to you by the Greater Dallas AFP and AFP International.

The course will take place May 18, 2017 from 8 am – 4:30 pm at Offices of Insperity, 545 John Carpenter Freeway, Suite 1200, Irving, TX 75062

The cost of the course is $390 for AFP members and $490 for non-members. Click here to register.

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Warning From the IRS About Email Scams

A dangerous email scam currently is circulating nationwide and targeting employers, including tax exempt entities, universities and schools, government and private-sector businesses. The scammer poses as an internal executive requesting employee Forms W-2 and Social Security Number information from company payroll or human resources departments. They may even send an initial “Hi, are you in today” message before the request.

The IRS has established a process that will allow employers and payroll service providers to quickly report any data losses related to the W-2 scam. See details at Form W2/SSN Data Theft: Information for Businesses and Payroll Service Providers. If notified in time, the IRS can take steps to prevent employees from being victimized by identity thieves filing fraudulent returns in their names. There also is information about how to report receiving the scam email even if you did not fall victim.

As a reminder, tax professionals who experience a data breach also should quickly report the incident to the IRS. Tax professionals may contact their local stakeholder liaison. See details at Data Theft Information for Tax Professionals.

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Fail Early, Fail Cheaply: 4 Steps to Vetting New Opportunities for Your Organization

Taking on too many opportunities comes in the form of mission straying, donor confusion or staff burnout. With any social enterprise there is risk, but understanding what opportunities to take on and planning strategically can help prevent failure. Making opportunity assessments can determine the viability of a potential program or endeavor.

Social Impact Architects has a four-step process for assessing an opportunity:

  • Select Opportunity
  • Establish decision criteria
  • Assess internal capabilities
  • Analyze and rate criteria

For more information and to read the full article, click here.

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