Thursday, December 7, 2017

Small Business of the Month: The Village Potters




In true Asheville fashion, creativity, collaboration and commerce collide at The Village Potters, our Small Business of the Month. 

"We celebrate creativity and people," said founder Sarah Wells Rolland. "We have created a community where we support, encourage and assist each other toward success." 

A studio potter for 25 years, Sarah had long held the idea for The Village Potters with a desire to share her experience with emerging potters. In 2011, that idea blossomed into an entity when she and her husband George found a 5,000 square foot space in the River Arts District.
 
Sarah Wells Rolland receives Small Business of the
Month Award from Chamber board member Laura Webb
Sarah asked four potters and long-time friends to join her in this grand experiment, a collective called The Village Potters with the mission of nurturing a passion for ceramic art and nurture creative exploration through education, experience, relationship and community. The Village Potters is a now fully equipped 13,000 square-foot Pottery housing six working professional studios, and includes three showrooms exhibiting and selling the fine, contemporary ceramic art of the permanent artists. The Village also serves 28 advanced students, a clay supply company, and a Teaching Center offering classes and one-time clay experiences for visitors and residents of Western NC.

In addition to Sarah and her husband George, Lori Theriault, Judi Harwood, Karen Dubois, Melanie Robertson and Christine Henry make up the intentional collective of potters who share a commitment to nurturing each other’s success, as well as the development and success of their students.

"We have established a beautifully creative sharing community," Sarah said. "As we say around The Village,we look not only to our own interest but also the interest of others.” 

Sometimes we overlook that artists like The Village Potters are also business people. The establishment of The Village Potters was funded completely by the sales of the Sarah's pottery and the tireless labor of her husband, George. 

"There is a misconception that all artists are either financially destitute or have a trust fund," Sarah said. "But in fact like us, most potters build their business one piece of pottery at a time."

So what is this artist/business woman's tips for other small businesses? Seek counsel. 

"I have been in business for over 30 years and I still am being mentored and getting counsel from others," Sarah said, noting that recently SCORE has been helpful in her decision making.

The Village Potters is expanding again, adding 5000 sq. feet to create incubator studio spaces for ceramic artist’s business startups. The tenants in the incubator are graduates of the two year Advanced Ceramic Study Program. The new expansion also includes a clay supply company and an additional fully equipped studio classroom.

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

New OSHA electronic reporting standards effective December 15



First Benefits Insurance Mutual wants to make you are aware of the December 15, 2017 federal requirement to electronically report work-related injuries and illnesses to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).   This summary has been provided courtesy of the NC Retail Merchants Association and we encourage sharing this information with your members.

What Information Must Be Submitted Electronically?
On December 15, 2017 all employers with more than 250 employees, and covered establishments (retailers are included in this specific list of covered establishments) with between 20-249 employees at any time during the year, will be required to electronically submit their 2016 OSHA 300A “Summary of Work-Related Injuries and Illnesses” form. Note: the 2016 OSHA 300A does not list specific injuries, employee names, or incident details but instead summarizes the number of injuries, the total numbers of days away and days transferred/restricted for employees, and the total number of injuries and illnesses by category.

Beginning in 2018, employers with 250 or more employees, regardless of industry type, must submit information from all completed 2017 forms (300A, 300, and 301) by July 1, 2018, and covered establishments with 20-249 employees will continue to electronically submit information from their completed 2017 Form 300A by July 1, 2018. Beginning in 2019 employers with 250 or more employees, regardless of industry type, and covered establishments with 20-249 employees must submit this information by March 2.

How Do I Submit the Information?
OSHA has provided a secure website that offers three options for data submission.
1.       Users may manually enter data into a webform.
2.       Users may upload a CSV file to process single or multiple establishments at the same time.
3.       Users of automated recordkeeping systems may transmit data electronically via an API (application programming interface). The Injury Tracking Application (ITA) is accessible from the ITA launch page, where you can provide the Agency your 2016 OSHA Form 300A information.

Who Must Submit the Information?
Below is the link to a list of covered establishments, as well as the list itself, that must submit Form 300A electronically if the establishment has between 20-249 employees. Note that an “establishment” is defined a single location. All employers with 250 or more employees, regardless of industry type, must submit this information. 
https://www.osha.gov/recordkeeping/NAICScodesforelectronicsubmission.html

NAICS
Industry
11
Agriculture, forestry, fishing and hunting
22
Utilities
23
Construction
31-33
Manufacturing
42
Wholesale trade
4413
Automotive parts, accessories, and tire stores
4421
Furniture stores
4422
Home furnishings stores
4441
Building material and supplies dealers
4442
Lawn and garden equipment and supplies stores
4451
Grocery stores
4452
Specialty food stores
4521
Department stores
4529
Other general merchandise stores
4533
Used merchandise stores
4542
Vending machine operators
4543
Direct selling establishments
4811
Scheduled air transportation
4841
General freight trucking
4842
Specialized freight trucking
4851
Urban transit systems
4852
Interurban and rural bus transportation
4853
Taxi and limousine service
4854
School and employee bus transportation
4855
Charter bus industry
4859
Other transit and ground passenger transportation
4871
Scenic and sightseeing transportation, land
4881
Support activities for air transportation
4882
Support activities for rail transportation
4883
Support activities for water transportation
4884
Support activities for road transportation
4889
Other support activities for transportation
4911
Postal service
4921
Couriers and express delivery services
4922
Local messengers and local delivery
4931
Warehousing and storage
5152
Cable and other subscription programming
5311
Lessors of real estate
5321
Automotive equipment rental and leasing
5322
Consumer goods rental
5323
General rental centers
5617
Services to buildings and dwellings
5621
Waste collection
5622
Waste treatment and disposal
5629
Remediation and other waste management services
6219
Other ambulatory health care services
6221
General medical and surgical hospitals
6222
Psychiatric and substance abuse hospitals
6223
Specialty (except psychiatric and substance abuse) hospitals
6231
Nursing care facilities
6232
Residential mental retardation, mental health and substance abuse facilities
6233
Community care facilities for the elderly
6239
Other residential care facilities
6242
Community food and housing, and emergency and other relief services
6243
Vocational rehabilitation services
7111
Performing arts companies
7112
Spectator sports
7121
Museums, historical sites, and similar institutions
7131
Amusement parks and arcades
7132
Gambling industries
7211
Traveler accommodation
7212
RV (recreational vehicle) parks and recreational camps
7213
Rooming and boarding houses
7223
Special food services
8113
Commercial and industrial machinery and equipment (except automotive and electronic) repair and maintenance
8123
Dry-cleaning and laundry services