• 16 Nov 2018 5:21 PM | Jessica Love

    Prosperity Indiana is one of many partners who collaborated to launch the Opportunity Investment Consortium of Indiana and its Opportunity Zone deal matching portal. With a $100,000 investment from Fifth Third Bank for the initiative, consortium backbone organizations and training and resource partners hosted a launch event for early adopters at United Way of Central Indiana on November 16, 2018. The portal will connect investors and Opportunity Funds looking for projects with potential Opportunity Zone developers and businesses. As a training and resource partner, Prosperity Indiana will provide in-person and webinar training opportunities related to Opportunity Zones. Watch for upcoming trainings on our events page

    To learn more about joining the consortium and accessing the online portal, visit the OIC website

    For more information on the launch, see these articles: 

    IBJ: New consortium to promote, facilitate investments in state 'opportunity zones'
    OFN: Opportunity Investment Consortium of Indiana Launches to Support Projects in Newly-Named Opportunity Zones
    Inside Indiana Business: Portal to Promote 'Opportunity Zone' Investment

  • 15 Nov 2018 1:24 PM | Deleted user

    Sens. Kaine and Hatch unveil bill to protect low-income families from housing discrimination

    November 15, 2018, HousingWire

    Ben Lane

    Two of the most notable senators on opposing sides of the political aisle are partnering to unveil a bill that would expand the Fair Housing Act to include protections for low-income families and military veterans.

    This week, Sens. Tim Kaine, D-Virginia, and Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, introduced the “Fair Housing Improvement Act of 2018,” which would prohibit housing discrimination based on source of income or veteran status.

    According to Kaine and Hatch, the Fair Housing Act currently does not strictly prohibit discrimination based on those factors, meaning that landlords may deny housing opportunities to renters using housing vouchers.

    But under Kaine and Hatch’s bill, the Fair Housing Act would be expanded to include source of income and veteran status among the other anti-discriminatory factors, which include race or color, religion, sex, national origin, familial status, or disability.

    This isn’t the first time that Kaine has tried to expand the protected classes under the Fair Housing Act. Last year, Kaine led the effort to introduce the “Fair and Equal Housing Act of 2017,” which would have prohibited housing discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity.

    The fair housing cause is one long championed by Kaine, who spent much of pre-political career as a fair housing lawyer.

    “As a fair housing lawyer, I witnessed the pain experienced by families who were discriminated against as they searched for a home,” Kaine said in a statement. “Housing decisions should be made on a potential tenant’s merits, not harmful prejudices that hurt the nation’s veterans and families in-need. The Fair Housing Improvement Act will help us continue that long pursuit to protect all Americans from discrimination.”

    Congress currently provides vouchers to help 2.2 million veterans and low-income households afford housing, and this bill would help ensure they actually are able to obtain the housing they need.

    “Helping veterans lead lives of dignity and independence has long been among my top priorities. This bill is part and parcel to that legacy,” Hatch said in a statement.

    “It will put an end to the immoral housing discrimination against veterans and others who rely on veterans’ benefits, social security disability, or other non-wage legal income,” Hatch added. “This bill will address the fact that Source of Income is not a protected class under the Federal Fair Housing Act, thereby helping to remove an unnecessary barrier facing Utah families and veterans on the path to self-reliance.”

    The move comes just a few months after the Department of Housing and Urban Development launched a push to get more landlords to accept housing vouchers, citing two studies that “most” landlords do not accept housing vouchers and therefore deny affordable housing opportunities to those who need it most.

    According to Kaine’s office, the bill is supported by:

    American Bar Association

    Housing Opportunities Made Equal Virginia

    National Fair Housing Alliance

    National Housing Law Project

    National Association of Housing and Redevelopment Officials

    National Low Income Housing Coalition

    Paralyzed Veterans of America; Veterans Association of Real Estate Professionals

    Virginia Poverty Law Center

  • 15 Nov 2018 8:21 AM | Jessica Love

    Members receive all workforce housing awards

    The Indiana Housing & Community Development Authority announced 19 Rental Housing Tax Credit awards on November 15, 2018.

    Prosperity Indiana members received tax credit awards in the following set-aside categories: Rural, Preservation, Workforce Housing, Community Integration, Qualified Not-for-Profit, and Small City. One member award was received in each category, except Workforce Housing, which garnered two member awards.

    Members who received tax credit allocations include The Englewood Group (Rural), Partners in Housing (Preservation), Herman & Kittle (Workforce), RealAmerica (Workforce), Milestone Ventures (Community Integration), HOPE of Evansville (Qualified NFP), and Crestline (Small City). 

    See the IHCDA website for the applicant list and full awarded and denied lists. 

    Interested in commenting on the Qualified Allocation Plan, which determines how tax credit projects are awarded? Prosperity Indiana is hosting events on December 6, 7 and 14 in South Bend, Evansville and Indianapolis. Members can register here

  • 06 Nov 2018 2:05 PM | Jessica Love

    AARP is partnering with Purdue Extension to assess the age-friendliness of Indianapolis and Fort Wayne. The Livable Communities Survey, which is available online from Nov. 1 through Dec. 15, is designed to determine attitudes and opinions of residents of Indianapolis, who are 45 years or older, regarding the current state of housing, outdoor spaces, transportation and streets, health and wellness, social participation, educational opportunities, volunteering and civic engagement, and job opportunities in their community. The survey takes about 10 minutes to complete. The information gathered in this assessment will be used to spur a conversation with community leadership regarding the possibility of becoming an AARP Age-Friendly Community and provide information to improve the quality of life for older citizens.

    Indianapolis residents can complete the survey by going here. Fort Wayne residents can complete the survey online here. All responses are completely anonymous, and no information will be collected that could identify any individual.
  • 02 Nov 2018 12:34 PM | Deleted user

    The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFBP) recently announced plans to end supervisory examinations of banks, lenders, and other financial institutions for violations of the Military Lending Act, a statute designed to protect military service members and their families from predatory lending. Acting Director Mick Mulvaney has expressed the belief that the CFPB lacks the statutory authority to include MLA in its supervisory work. 

    Image result for consumer federation of americaOn November 1, the Consumer Federation of America (CFA) published a comprehensive legal analysis of the CFPB's authority to include Military Lending Act compliance within its supervisory exams. The analysis concludes that the CFPB has ample legal authority for this supervision for four reasons:

    1. Violations of the MLA render service members' loans void, thereby triggering concurrent violations of federal consumer financial laws that the CFPB must already cover within its exams.
    2. The CFPB may use its supervisory exams to obtain information about MLA compliance because such information is pertinent to business practices already subject to CFPB enforcement.
    3. The CFPB can cover MLA violations within its exams for the purpose of detecting and assessing risks to consumers.
    4. The text of the MLA itself requires the CFPB to enforce the MLA in the same way that the CFPB enforces the Truth in Lending Act - which includes supervisory exams. 
  • 01 Nov 2018 9:20 AM | Deleted user

    The Indiana Nonprofits Project collaborated with the Indiana Arts Commission to include a special sample of Indiana arts and culture nonprofits to inform the Commission’s planning, capacity building, and training efforts.

    Selected highlights:

    Increased demand for services. Over half of arts and culture nonprofits say that demands for their services have increased over the last three years and very few say demands have decreased.

    Dependence on volunteers. About a fourth of IAC nonprofits have no paid staff members and almost all use volunteers (other than board members).

    Sources of revenue. Indiana arts and culture nonprofits are more likely to receive donations from individuals, grants from foundations, and government grants than other nonprofits.

    Challenges in finance and marketing. Arts and cultural nonprofits are significantly more likely to face financial challenges than all other nonprofits; they also report more challenges managing programs, planning, and marketing.

    IT and other capacities. Indiana arts and cultural organizations have significantly greater experience with a broad range of information technology resources and have more good organizational practices in place than other Indiana nonprofits.

    For more details and highlights from the report, see the press release »

    Download the complete report — “Indiana Arts and Culture Nonprofits: Overview and Challenges” and its other findings »

  • 01 Nov 2018 9:18 AM | Deleted user

    Asserting the Court of Appeals’ ruling in a rent-to-own dispute will adversely impact tenants across the state, Indiana Legal Services filed a petition Monday to transfer its litigation against Rainbow Realty Group for the company’s rent-to-own practices. In its transfer petition,Indiana Legal Services argued Rainbow's rent-to-buy contract is a lease governed by the state’s Landlord-Tenant Act.

    For the full story, see theindianalawyer.com.

  • 29 Oct 2018 10:52 AM | Deleted user

    Join us for a webinar on Nov 2, 2018 1:30 PM EDT.

    Register now at the link below:


    O-Zone Reinvestment Advisors, a consulting firm launched by experienced legal and finance professionals invite you to a one-hour free webinar discussing how the Opportunity Zone program can be used to finance real estate projects and operating businesses. The webinar will focus on practical insights and discuss sample deal structures based on the recent clarifications in regulations by Treasury.


    Gary Hobbs

    Paul Jones

    Special Guest(s)

    Date: November 2, 2018

    Time: 1:30pm – 2:30pm EDT

  • 29 Oct 2018 10:46 AM | Deleted user

    Indiana Philanthropy Alliance Announces Incoming President and CEO

    Claudia Cummings of Conexus Indiana to lead Indiana Philanthropy Alliance.

    INDIANAPOLIS, IND.—Indiana Philanthropy Alliance (IPA) Board of Directors has named Claudia Cummings as its next president and CEO effective Jan. 1, 2019. Cummings will succeed Marissa Manlove, who announced her retirement after 12 years at the organization.

    “Claudia is a strategic leader with years of experience working across the state of Indiana,” said Tina Gridiron, chair of IPA Board of Directors. “She brings the right mix of strategic vision, disciplined implementation and personal passion to this role. I look forward to the many ways she will continue to support, champion and connect all members.”

    Cummings currently serves as vice president of strategic development at Conexus Indiana, the Central Indiana Corporate Partnership (CICP) initiative positioning the Hoosier state as the best place for advanced manufacturing and logistics industries to invest, employ and succeed. An Indiana native, Cummings has been the senior leader with Conexus Indiana since 2008 responsible for overseeing collaborations on workforce development and education between industry, academic, philanthropic and public sector partners.

    “With over $846 million in grants awarded each year, the impact of IPA members in their communities and across the state is tremendous,” said Cummings. “I’m looking forward to working with Indiana’s vibrant philanthropic community to leverage the strength of IPA and to intensify our results.”

    Cummings was selected after a competitive process conducted by the Columbus, Indiana-based search firm Smith and Syberg and coordinated by a seven-member search committee of current IPA Board of Directors and key community leaders.

    “There was very high interest in the position from across the country. We spoke with many strong candidates, and I’m confident Claudia is the right leader for the next season of IPA,” shared Gridiron.

    “She is a thoughtful leader with a wealth of experience building networks, supporting partnerships and sustaining collaborations,” Gridiron added. “I look forward to the energy, innovation and creative leadership that she will bring.”

    Cummings has dedicated her career to public service and community impact. Prior to her work with Conexus Indiana, she was Deputy Commissioner at the Indiana Department of Administration where she focused on small business development. She has also worked in various policy advocacy, communications and leadership positions for the Mayor of Indianapolis, Speaker of the Indiana House, Marion County Clerk, and U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Indiana.

    Cummings currently chairs the Goodwill Education Initiatives Board of Directors and serves on the Leadership Council of the Manufacturing Skills Standards Council and as Vice Chair on the Distinguished Alumni Council for the Indiana University School of Public and Environmental Affairs (SPEA). She has also been a member of the State Workforce Innovation Council and the Indianapolis Local Public Improvement Bond Bank.

    Cummings succeeds Manlove, who leaves the organization in a strong financial position and with more members than in the organization’s 28-year history. During her tenure, IPA has gained prominence as a key voice on behalf of philanthropy with policymakers and other community leaders across the state. Manlove has also positioned IPA as a national leader among regional associations of grantmakers.

    “I am pleased to welcome Claudia to the IPA family. She knows and has worked with many members of the philanthropic sector and is well-suited to build on IPA’s strengths,” said Manlove. “I look forward to assisting her in November and December to ensure a seamless transition in leadership.”

    For more on this story and the Indiana Philanthropy Alliance, go here

  • 23 Oct 2018 10:43 AM | Deleted user

    IEDC Call for Sessions

    The International Economic Development Council will host its 2019 annual conference in Indianapolis, October 13-16. As member of the host committee, Prosperity Indiana invites members to submit session proposals for consideration. 

    The committee is looking for a wide variety of content related to topics impacting economic development, i.e. education, community development, transportation, etc.

    Proposals will be evaluated by the IEDC staff and the Programming Subcommittee based. Proposed content will be scored on relevance, innovation, timeliness, actionability, and appropriateness. Proposed speakers will be scored on qualifications, diversity, and availability/competitivity. Proposed session formats will be scored based on appropriateness for the intended audience and innovation.

    Please use this link for submitting concurrent session proposals by January 11, 2019. 

    Note the following: 1) proposals and the ideas therein will become the property of IEDC and 2) any component of a proposal’s content, speakers, or format may be adapted, modified, or combined with others to best fit programming needs.

    For event details, see IEDC's conference page

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