Newsletter – February 2011
Corporation for National and Community Service releases 2011-2015 Strategic Plan
The Strategic Plan provides a roadmap for using national service to address critical challenges facing our communities and our nation. It builds on the strong foundation of national service that has developed over the past four decades and the vision set forth in the bipartisan Edward M. Kennedy Serve America Act of 2009.
The plan recognizes the critical role that CNCS and the network it supports plays in engaging millions of Americans in sustained service to solve community problems, supporting our most vulnerable citizens, strengthening the voluntary sector, and transforming lives. It also calls on all those involved in national service to lead and operate at the highest level of accountability, integrity and transparency.
The plan lays out four strategic goals:
- Increase the impact of national service on community needs in communities served by CNCS-supported programs
- Strengthen national service so that participants engaged in CNCS-supported programs consistently find satisfaction, meaning and opportunity
- Maximize the value we add to grantees, partners and participants
- Fortify management operations and sustain a capable, responsive and accountable organization
The plan recognizes that national service will have its greatest impact by targeting resources on a core set of critical problems and carefully measuring progress. It prioritizes six major challenges facing communities: disaster services, economic opportunity, education, environmental stewardship, healthy futures, and veterans and military families. It also provides strategies and performance measures to evaluate success over the next five years.
For more information on CNCS and the strategic plan, please visit on: www.nationalservice.gov.
New Chair Named for CA State Citizen Corps Council
State Farm Youth Advisory Board Grant Opportunity
Grant applications are available starting February 1st at: www.statefarmyab.com.
CaliforniaVolunteers Policy Corner
Federal Appropriations – Fiscal Year 2011
The federal government is currently functioning under a Continuing Resolution for the Fiscal Year 2011 that ends on March 4, 2011. On February 5, the House voted to completely eliminate the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS). This targets AmeriCorps, Senior Corps, Learn and Serve, NCCC and AmeriCorps VISTA for zero funding nationwide. H.R. 1 will go to the Senate the week of February 28 for debate.
The U.S. Senate is attempting to extend the Current Resolution to March 31 so that negotiation can take place between the House and the Senate. Please stay tuned or check our website for additional updates on this matter.
Fiscal Year 2012
On February 14, 2011, President Obama released his federal budget request for FY2012. This request would fund the government beginning on October 1, 2011. Please click here for an overview of the CNCS budget requested by the President. The President requested an increase from FY2010 funding in the Corporation’s budget.
Prevailing Wage Exemption for Volunteers in California
Under state labor laws effective in 2003, there were strict limits on donated labor for public works projects which limited volunteers and service members from working community projects that could be classified as public works. This meant that volunteers that wanted to work on projects classified as “public works” such as, tree plantings, habitat restoration, school beautifications, etc., were required to be paid a prevailing wage. A local volunteer organization was fined $33,000 in 2003 for failing to pay volunteers a prevailing wage for their service restoring a local creek bed.
In 2004, in response to these limits, the Legislature passed AB 2690, which exempted volunteers from the prevailing wage requirement. As a result of this legislation, volunteers were able to serve in their communities on public works projects. This bill contained a sunset clause that expired on January 1, 2009. In 2008, the Legislature passed AB 2537, which extended the sunset on this exemption through January 1, 2012.
CaliforniaVolunteers is currently working to ensure that the sunset date is either extended or eliminated completely.
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