Green Launchpad White Paper 12-24-10_cs

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					                    Confidential - Draft

The Long Island Green Business LaunchPad
 Prospects for the Development of Sustainable Social
             Enterprises on Long Island

                     Chuck Schwartz
                    Green Long Island, Inc.

                   Rev. Patrick Duggan
               Abundant Communities Together

                     Francis Fragola
                  Collaborative Energy Group

                      Iris A. Johnson
    Economic Opportunity Commission of Nassau County, Inc.

                       December 2010
                              Confidential - Draft

“The most meaningful engine of change, powerful enough to confront corporate
power, may be not so much environmental quality, as the economic development
and growth associated with the effort to improve it. “ Barry Commoner
                                                                                         Page | 2

"We need to inject some old-fashioned American values and common-sense,
practical thinking into our energy policy." Michael Bloomberg

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the
world; indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.” Margaret Mead

You can make a lot of speeches, but the real thing is when you dig a hole, plant a
tree, give it water, and make it survive. That's what makes the difference -
Wangari Maathai (environmental activist, first African woman to receive the
Nobel Peace Prize)

Working for the earth is not a way to get rich, it is a way to be rich
Paul Hawken, entrepreneur, environmental activist and author

Business is the force of change. Business is essential to solving the climate
crisis, because this is what business is best at: innovating, changing, addressing
risks, searching for opportunities. There is no more vital task - Richard Branson

Only business can build a low-carbon economy. Business is all about seeing
ideas and growing them. Businesses have the resources, the people, the
technical skills to make things happen - and they have the channels to market -
Tom Delay, Chief Executive, The Carbon Trust

                                              The Long Island Green Business LaunchPad
                                                                         December 2010
                                     Confidential - Draft

                             Long Island Green Business LaunchPad


The Long Island Green Business LaunchPad (LI LaunchPad) is a business Page | 3
accelerator designed to work directly with aspiring entrepreneurs to take smart,
sustainable, mission-driven business ideas and partner with innovators and the
business community to bring these enterprises to market quickly. It is a structure
for green business development and job creation; a methodology for incentivizing
sustainable economic development. LI LaunchPad is a collaborative effort led a
partnership of the nonprofit and small business sectors and employing the most
current thinking in social entrepreneurship. It is designed to be replicable in any
locality with market conditions that are favorable to the growth of green business

LI LaunchPad was conceived by three social entrepreneurs with almost 75
years of combined experience in the public and private sectors, Chuck Schwartz
of LI Green, Francis Fragola of Collaborative Energy Group and Patrick Duggan
of Abundant Communities Together (ACT). Chuck Schwartz is a serial
entrepreneur that has created a number of successful small businesses in the
technology area. His latest effort the not for profit corporation Green Long Island
Inc. (LI Green), focuses on providing technical assistance to Long Island
residents in the areas of energy efficiency, renewable energy, home toxicity and
healthy living. Already over 1,000 LI homeowners have received LI Green
Services. Collaborative Energy Group, Mr. Fragola’s current venture, helps
businesses across the region lower energy costs by making their facilities more
efficient. Reverend Duggan is a community leader and expert in local economic
development. His latest program has trained over 300 faith leaders, nonprofit
executives and business owners on ways to lower operating costs through green
building upgrades.

Other community organizations are beginning to understand the value
proposition for the Long Island Green Business LaunchPad. The first to
participate is the Economic Opportunity Commission of Nassau County. After
creating Long Island’s most effective green jobs training program, Mrs. Iris A.
Johnson, CEO & EOC’s Executive Director of, understood the job creation
potential of LaunchPad, and joined the leadership team of this collaboration.

The authors’ involvement in successful green initiatives has enabled them to see
both the potential and the pitfalls in Long Island’s emerging green economy. As
Pearl Kamer’s recent report verifies, the long term promise of green”, “clean tech”
and “sustainability” has the potential to transform the economy on Long Island.1

    ”LIA 2010 Green Energy Report”, Pearl Kamer, Long Island Association, September 2010
                                                         The Long Island Green Business LaunchPad
                                                                                      December 2010
                                     Confidential - Draft

In the near term, however, the reality of job creation in the local green economy
differs dramatically from the hype.

The Challenge
The lack of jobs has been a discouraging challenge for the participants in Long
Island’s training programs for people seeking employment in green jobs and Page | 4
careers. Since 2009, hundreds of people have received entry level training in
weatherization, building performance, solar panel installation, and other career
path jobs. Yet because a number of factors including among others a relatively
uneducated marketplace, the lack of available capital, concerns by consumers
about making investments and the struggling economy, the number of
candidates employed after completing these programs is nominal.

To get a sense of the limited availability of green jobs on Long Island, we
searched the internet for major employment websites including,,,, and In our query, we used keywords
including “Green”, “Energy”, “Efficiency” and “Solar.” The search yielded only a
handful of openings for green jobs on Long Island. One website,
“”, announced with great fanfare just last year, is now closed.

Equally disturbing is the difficulty in discerning if the regional green economy is a
true market, or to identify clearly what a “green” job is.2 It is difficult to determine
how much “green” business is conducted outside of government- and public
utility-subsidized products and services purchased through grants, rebates,
incentives or tax credits.

In a market research project conducted at Stony Brook University’s School of
Business, researchers studied the ratio between program costs for government-
and utility-based energy efficiency programs versus the number of families and
small businesses served. They determined that these programs are costly and
unsustainable. The cost of NYSERDA’s “Home Performance with Energy Star”
program, funded utility ratepayers, is in excess of $5000 per home. 3
NationalGrid’s direct install program designed to serve 1200 natural gas
customers on Long Island, will cost over $ 2600 per home.4 If all of the more

  In May 2010 the Advanced Energy Center at Stony Brook University in partnership with the New York
State Department of Labor, The New York City Labor Market Information Service (NYCLMIS) at the
CUNY Graduate Center, the State University of New York at Albany received a grant from the US
Department of Labor to conduct the first comprehensive New York State measurement of employer
demand for “green jobs” against the capacity of educational and training resources to address these needs.
Green jobs are defined as jobs that are essential for products or services that improve energy efficiency,
expand the use of renewable energy or support environmental stability.
  The values cited in this study came from analysis of quarterly and yearly reports issued by the New York
State Energy Research Development Administration (NYSERDA) and the Long Island Power Authority
(LIPA). Values
  Values cited here came from planning documents filed by National Grid Corp. with the NY State Public
Service Commision
                                                            The Long Island Green Business LaunchPad
                                                                                            December 2010
                              Confidential - Draft

than 300,000 eligible families were allowed to use this program, the public costs
would be astronomical.

It is important, necessary and appropriate for government to create the
conditions for economic transformation through incentives, subsidies and job
training in energy conservation and renewable energy products and services. Page | 5
The high cost and political vulnerability of these initiatives make them
unsustainable, however. Over the intermediate and long term, only the private
sector is equipped to lead the emergence of the green economy.

Nowhere is this more apparent than in low income communities. And nowhere is
the potential for success of sustainable green businesses greater than in low
income communities on Long Island.

Long Island’s low income communities have the highest unemployment rates,
highest numbers of home foreclosures, the oldest and least energy efficient
housing stock, greatest health disparities, the lowest number of new businesses
starts, and minimal private sector investment. Over the last 30 years, during
periods of economic expansion, these communities did not experience sustained
revitalization. While there are more millionaires in the region than ever in history,
poverty on Long Island is higher now than before the economic boom of the
1980’s and 1990’s. Now, while the entire country is slowly emerging from a
historic economic recession, low income communities lack the small business
infrastructure that has been the most important job creating engine of our

The Opportunity
LI LaunchPad has been created as a social enterprise to help aspiring
entrepreneurs to build next generation green businesses on Long Island and
beyond. The core objectives of LI LaunchPad are to:

   •   Rapidly launch small businesses and micro-enterprises that have low
       start-up costs and minimal barriers to success
   •   Create jobs with livable wages
   •   Hire locally from the displaced worker pool within the communities where
       businesses are located
   •   Focus exclusively on “green” businesses including locally grown organic
       produce, energy conservation, renewable energy, toxics and waste
   •   Donate 10% of net profits to nonprofits serving local markets

The most effective way to encourage green job growth on Long Island is to
support the rapid creation of green businesses. LI LaunchPad will provide this
support in the form of:

   •   Business concepts and planning
                                              The Long Island Green Business LaunchPad
                                                                         December 2010
                             Confidential - Draft

   •   Financial planning
   •   Micro-loans, small business financing
   •   Training, and
   •   Assistance with business start-up and operation.

LI LaunchPad is a business accelerator, NOT a business incubator. It’s goal is Page | 6
to facilitate the rapid creation of local enterprises. As such, LI LaunchPad will

   •   Direct assistance to fledgling entrepreneurs from business
       conceptualization to full operation
   •   Management assistance, marketing and sales support, bookkeeping and
   •   Assistance with setting up bank accounts, securing permits, certifications,
       legal documents, tax preparation and filing, accounts payable and
       accounts receivable

LI LaunchPad will also provide:

   • A location for office space and meetings,
   • Back-office support, systems and technology, and
   • Access to research, training, and business counseling.

LI LaunchPad will supply the guidance and assistance this new generation of
entrepreneurs needs to build the unique technologies, service offerings and
products that will:

   •   Strengthen the economy, enhance the environment and improve the
       health of families in the communities served
   •   Allow multiple levels of employment and career pathways starting at entry
   •   Create business models that can grow locally but also extend into other

Long Island’s least developed communities have the potential to generate the
greatest returns from the launch of sustainable green businesses.            Their
collective growth and expansion can have an economic ripple effect that would
be measured in billions of dollars.     Strategic, mission-focused business
investment in these communities will create jobs, and help grow the regional
economy. For this reason, LI LaunchPad will start its first businesses in low and
moderate income communities in Nassau County.

LI LaunchPad is made possible through a collaborative effort led by the
nonprofit sector and employing the most current thinking in social
entrepreneurship. The LI LaunchPad collaboration will include:
                                            The Long Island Green Business LaunchPad
                                                                       December 2010
                            Confidential - Draft

   •   Council of Advisors
   •   Three Executive Partner Agencies
   •   Two Regional Partner Agencies
   •   LI LaunchPad businesses
                                                                                      Page | 7
LI LaunchPad Council Of Advisors
The Council of Advisors will provide a wide range of regional expertise in the
areas of small business development, banking and finance, philanthropy,
economic and community development, “green” and/or “clean technology”
businesses, energy, higher education, and labor. Some thirty or more regional
leaders will be invited to serve on LI LaunchPad’s inaugural Council of Advisors.

Prospective Advisors include:

   •   Les Bluestone, BlueSea Development
   •   Majora Carter, Majora Carter Group
   •   Randi Dressler, Island Harvest
   •   Walter Edwards, Full Spectrum Development
   •   Peter Elkowitz, Long Island Housing Partnership
   •   Elizabeth Fiteni, Long Island Interfaith Environmental Network
   •   Marian Garvin, Community Development Corporation of Long Island
   •   Tom Goodhue, LI Council of Churches
   •   Pearl Kamer, Adelphi University
   •   Richie Kessel, NY Power Authority
   •   Richard Koubek, Jobs with Justice
   •   Jim Smith, Director of the Advanced Energy Center, SUNY Stony Brook
   •   Barbara McDonald, Workforce Development Institute
   •   John McNally, Rauch Foundation
   •   Carrie Meeks Gallagher,Suffolk County Commissioner of Energy and
   •   David Okorn, LI Community Foundation
   •   Pastor Curtis Riley, Hempstead Rebirth
   •   Robert Suarez, Bethpage Federal Credit Union
   •   David Winchester, CleanTech Rocks
   •   (1-2) Representative(s), Accounting
   •   (3-5) Representative, Banking/Finance
   •   Representative, Center for Science Teaching & Learning
   •   Representative, Cornell Cooperative Extension
   •   (3-5) Representatives, “Clean Tech” or “Green” Companies
   •   Representative, Council of Chambers of Commerce
   •   (1-2) Representative(s), Legal
   •   Representative, LI Association
   •   Representative, LI Farm Bureau

                                           The Long Island Green Business LaunchPad
                                                                      December 2010
                           Confidential - Draft

   •   Representative, LI Hispanic Chamber of Commerice
   •   Representative, LI African American Chamber of Commerce
   •   Representative, LI Power Authority
   •   Representative, NationalGrid
   •   Representative, Nassau Community College
   •   Representative, Suffolk Community College                                    Page | 8
   •   Representative, SUNY/Farmingdale
   •   Representative, US Green Building Council
   •   Representative, U.S. Small Business Administration
   •   Others

LI LaunchPad Executive Partner Agencies
Three of Long Island’s most reputable nonprofit organizations with a combined
60 years of service to the region lead the LI LaunchPad initiative. They are:

Abundant Communities Together (ACT)
Rev. Patrick G. Duggan, President
392 Woodland Drive
South Hempstead, NY 11550

  • Build & coordinate relationships
  • Provide strategic management & resource development
  • Planning and operation
  • Assist in the design and formulation of the LI LaunchPad technology
  • Fund development, capital formation

Economic Opportunity Commission of Nassau County (EOC) Ms. Iris
Johnson, CEO & Executive Director
134 Jackson St
Hempstead, NY 11550

EOC, through its CEDC Green Enterprises initiative, will:
   • Provide a headquarters for LI LaunchPad
   • Provide space to new businesses,
   • Coordinate entrepreneurial and green jobs training
   • Provide initial entrepreneurial candidates
   • Pre-qualify potential employees of LI LaunchPad businesses
   • Assist in market development for products and services offered by LI
      LaunchPad businesses
   • Serve as lead agency and/or fiscal agent for major grants
   • Fund development

LI Green
                                         The Long Island Green Business LaunchPad
                                                                    December 2010
                            Confidential - Draft

Chuck Schwartz, Director
68 South Service Road
Melville, NY 11747

  • Lead the design and formulation of the LI LaunchPad technology       Page | 9
  • Provide IT support for LI LaunchPad businesses
  • Assist in the identification of LI LaunchPad-owned businesses
  • Provide strategic management & resource development
  • Planning and operation
  • Develop and coordinate the vetting process for LI LaunchPad
     entrepreneur businesses
  • Coordinate relationships with “green” and/or “clean tech” businesses
  • Fund development, capital formation

LI LaunchPad Regional Partners (proposed)
Our Regional Partners will provide regional scope and strategic guidance to LI
LaunchPad. They are:

National Center for Suburban Studies at Hofstra University
Mr. Lawrence Levy, Executive Director
144 University College Hall
Hempstead, NY 11549

Sustainable Long Island
Sarah Lansdale, Executive Director
45A Seaman Avenue
Bethpage, NY 11714

LI LaunchPad Businesses
Businesses started out of LI LaunchPad will be wholly owned by LI LaunchPad
entrepreneurs, by LI LaunchPad Executive Partners, and/or jointly owned by LI
LaunchPad Executive Partners, entrepreneurs, and/or other equity holders. All
employees of LI LaunchPad businesses will be pre-qualified by the EOC, the LI
LaunchPad Lead Agency.

Proposed Business # 1 – Trust Energy

Direct delivery retailer of:
   • Low cost high impact energy efficiency products and services
   • Additional products and services that reduce home toxicity, reduce waste
       and improve health

In addition, Trust Energy will serve as a sales agency for other green products
and services

                                           The Long Island Green Business LaunchPad
                                                                      December 2010
                             Confidential - Draft

Proposed Business # 2 – Home Grown Foods

   •   Sustainable agriculture business that organically “farms” small plots in
       backyards throughout Long Island
   •   Operates primarily as a Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) business
       supplemented with sales at Green Markets and wholesale                   Page | 10

Size & Scope
When fully operational, LI LaunchPad will consist of:

   •   $350,000 LI LaunchPad annual operating budget
   •   $2.5 million LI LaunchPad Venture Fund

LI LaunchPad Operating Budget
LI LaunchPad will be jointly operated as an initiative of three independent LI
nonprofit organizations (ACT, EOC, and LI Green). As Lead Agency, EOC
and/or its affiliate community economic development corporation (through the
CEDC Green Enterprises initiative) will act as fiscal agent for all LI LaunchPad
major grants.

Sources of revenue for the initial $350,000 operating budget will be:

   •   40% Grants & Donations
   •   40% In Kind
   •   20% Fees & Business Income

LI LaunchPad’s ten-year goal is to increase Fees & Business Income to 60% or
more of total revenue, reducing dependence on Grants and Donations entirely.

LI LaunchPad Community Business Capital Fund
The $2.5 million LI LaunchPad Community Business Capital Fund will be a
source of start-up and operating capital for eligible LI LaunchPad businesses.
The Fund will provide patient capital by:
    • Securing a combination of grants, loans, and loan commitments to reach
      the $2.5 million Fund goal
    • Offering a range of loan products from microloans starting at $500 to small
      business financing of $50,000 or more.
    • Organizing a loan committee of banking and finance professionals that will
      make financing decisions independently of LI LaunchPad Organizational

Steps to Launch LI LaunchPad in Spring 2011
LI LaunchPad Executive Partners are working aggressively toward the goal of
opening the first LI LaunchPad business in the Spring of 2011. Toward this end,
we are moving through a series of steps to establish the collaboration. We will:

                                            The Long Island Green Business LaunchPad
                                                                       December 2010
                             Confidential - Draft

1. Develop the LI LaunchPad business model(s) and business plan. (First draft
   completed January 2011)
2. Conduct 3-5 site visits to other collaborative green social ventures locally and
3. Identify Regional Partners and Advisors. (Organizing meetings of Executive,
   Regional Partners, & Advisors conducted by mid-February 2011)                    Page | 11
4. Identify initial grant funding sources. ($20,000 in seed funding secured by
   March      2011)
5. Identify initial venture capital sources. (Convene exploratory meeting of
   banking & finance professionals by end of February 2011)

                                            The Long Island Green Business LaunchPad
                                                                       December 2010

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