Friday, February 26, 2010

CAPLAW Self-Assessment Tools

CAPLAW has compiled various self-assessment tools to assist CAAs in evaluating and improving aspects of their organization, including:
  • Organization Overall
  • Board and Governance
  • Executive Directors
  • Financial Management
  • Fundraising
  • Head Start
  • Legal Compliance
  • State-Specific Resources
Access the self-assessment tools!

Many of these tools are available on – an excellent resource for examples of innovative CAA programs and practices.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Conference Workshop Descriptions Now Available!

Workshop descriptions for the 2010 CAPLAW National Training Conference are now available on the CAPLAW website!

View Workshop Schedule & Descriptions
View Additional Conference Information

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Upcoming Audio Conference Series!

CAPLAW Audio Conference Series

Back To Basics for CAAs
Whether you are new to Community Action or a veteran of the War on Poverty, join CAPLAW for an introduction to and overview of critical legal issues affecting Community Action Agencies (CAAs). Attend one session or all four.

Register Online Today!
Print and Mail Registration Form

Series Schedule:

Introduction to CSBG
February 26, 2010, 1p.m. Eastern time
Level: Overview, CPE Field of Study: Specialized Knowledge and Applications
Explore the ins and outs of the Community Services Block Grant (CSBG) Act, the linchpin of the current Community Action movement. Join us for a discussion of: the composition, roles, and responsibilities of tripartite boards; limitations on the use of CSBG funds; allocation, payment and carryover of those funds; reduction and termination of CSBG funding; and designation of new entities eligible to receive CSBG funds.
Presenter: Eleanor A. Evans, Esq., CAPLAW Deputy Director/Senior Counsel

Right on the Money: Complying with OMB Circular A-122
March 26, 2010, 1p.m. Eastern time
Level: Overview, CPE Field of Study: Specialized Knowledge and Applications
Compliance with OMB Circular A-122 – the federal cost principle circular for nonprofits – is crucial for CAAs and other organizations receiving federal grants. This audio conference will provide an overview of the circular’s general principles, how to distinguish between direct and indirect costs, and different methods for allocating indirect costs. Using CAPLAW’s annotated guide to A-122, this session will also examine selected items of cost – both the plain language of individual rules and how to apply the principles in combination to particularly thorny issues faced by grantees. CAPLAW’s A-122 guide will also be offered at a reduced price to all conference registrants.
Presenter: Kay Sohl, Nonprofit Financial Consultant, Kay Sohl Consulting

501(c)(3) Fundamentals
April 23, 2010, 1p.m. Eastern time
Level: Overview, CPE Field of Study: Taxes
A nonprofit’s federal tax-exempt status is one of its most valuable assets. Review the do’s and don’ts of protecting that status. This audio conference will cover: definitions, advantages and basic requirements of tax exemption under Internal Revenue Code section 501(c)(3); restrictions and prohibitions on 501(c)(3) organizations – including lobbying and political activity, transactions with insiders, and unrelated business activity; fundraising receipts and disclosures; and the IRS Form 990.
Presenter: R. Allison Ma’luf, Esq., CAPLAW Associate Counsel

Lobbying Legally and Effectively: The Rules of the Road
May 21, 2010, 1p.m. Eastern time
Level: Overview, CPE Field of Study: Specialized Knowledge and Applications
Involvement in public policy issues is a must for organizations working to improve the lives of low-income people. In this session, examine the rules that apply to lobbying by CAAs, Head Start programs, and 501(c)(3) organizations and find out how to advocate effectively within those rules.
Presenter: Anita Lichtblau, Esq., CAPLAW Executive Director/General Counsel

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

DOE Free Webinar

Register fo the DOE free webinar Everything you need to know about the modified Residential Weatherization Worker Wage Determinations on Thursday, February 18, 2010 from 10:00 AM - 11:30 AM EST or 3:00 PM - 4:30 PM EST.

The webinar will provide you with information you need to understand the new Residential Weatherization Wage Determinations issued in December 2009. At the end of the presentation, there will be a period of question and answer. During the webinar, please email your questions to Greg Reamy at

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Robert M. Coard Conference Scholarship

CAPLAW is pleased to offer the Robert M. Coard Conference Scholarship to two individuals in community action for the 2010 National Training Conference. The scholarship was created by the CAPLAW Board of Directors in honor of the late Robert Coard, founding president and board member of CAPLAW. For over 40 years, Mr. Coard was a leader in community action and advocate for low-income individuals everywhere.

Who is eligible for the scholarship?

An individual must meet the following requirements to be eligible for the scholarship:
  • Nominated by the executive director of his/her organization
  • Attending the CAPLAW National Training Conference for the first time
  • Participated 3 or more years in community action or is current CAA board member
  • Possesses professional responsibilities in compliance, governance human resources or finance, or other areas requiring legal or financial knowledge
  • Represents and emerging leader in community action
What does the scholarship cover? Each scholarship covers the 2010 conference registration fee and $500 for travel and lodging expenses associated with the conference.

How do I apply for the scholarship? To apply for the Robert Coard Scholarship, please complete the scholarship application form accompanied by the additional required materials.Remember that scholarship applicants must be nominated by his or her organization. Submissions must be postmarked or submitted via e-mail by April 30, 2010.

Mail application and materials to:
178 Tremont Street, 10th Floor
Boston MA 02111
Or, Email to:
Bernadette Hood at

Monday, February 1, 2010

Become a CAPLAW conference Sponsor!

CAPLAW would like to invite your organization to become a sponsor of this year's National Training Conference!

Last year, over 500 conference attendees were exposed to our sponsors’ advertisements in the 2009 conference program and countless more to their logos on the CAPLAW website.

What does Citizens United Mean for Tax-Exempt Organizations?

Read a summary of the January 25, 2010 Citizens United call hosted by the Alliance for Justice. The call aimed to clarify the impact the Citizens United decision will have on your organization's planned electoral activities.