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Sew What?

image of Sew What? flyer

In the spirit of the current emphasis on "Maker Spaces" and the approach to providing outlets for library users to create content for their lives, we are excited to be able to offer a program at Biblioteca Latinoamericana's Family Learning Center entitled "Sew What? Sewing Your Way to Financial Literacy."


This is a seven week course where participants will commit to a customized curriculum of sewing instruction and small business financial literacy with qualified instructors from May 13 thru June 24, 2014 on Tuesday evenings from 6:00 to 7:30pm. The aim of this program is to empower participants to create their own sewing creations and will additionally prepare them to learn how to create their own cottage industry small business. In other words, participants will be able to potentially sell what they have spents months producing on sewing machines provided by Biblioteca at a resource fair and boutique to be held in December, 2014.


All of the participants will be rewarded with a complimentary membership in the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and will be granted access to newly purchased sewing machines during select hours at Biblioteca branch library to work on their projects throughout the summer months and beyond.


Space in this program is limited and pre-registration is required. You must be at least 18 years of age to sign-up.


Contact the Biblioteca Latinoamericana at 1-408-294-1237 or visit us in person at 921 South First Street to participate in this unque opportunity.

Featured Resource: PrivCo

PrivCo logo imagePrivCo is a unique online resource that provides information on private companies. If you have ever tried finding financial information about private companies you know that it is nearly impossible. Public companies generally have to report their financial information to the SEC whereas there are no such mandates for private companies.  This makes researching private company information very difficult.  PrivCo helps solve this issue.


In addition to having full reports on larger private companies, Privco also offers excellent search features for VC funding, private equity deals, and private M&A deals.


Privco has big name companies as their clients such as Google and Adobe. Customers would normally have to pay $150 for each report offered through Privco. Did you know we offer Privco access for free with a San José Public Library card? Also, we are the only public library in California to offer Privco.

New Laws for the New Year

City of San Jose logo imageWith the new year, San José has a couple of new laws that affect business owners. The first, is the new minimum wage for San José is now $10.15, from the previous $10.00 minimum wage. The second new law to take effect is the ban on the restaurant use of styrofoam containers. This will only affect multi-state restaurants for now. However, for January 2015 this will affect all San José food establishments.

Affordable Care Act & Small Businesses

Logo Image for Covered CaliforniaAre you a small business owner and not sure if you need to get health insurance for your employees? The SHOP (Small Business Health Options Program) site can answer all your questions including if your small business needs to provide employees with health insurance or not.

Small Business Saturday: November 30

Logo Image for Shop SmallWe've all heard of Black Friday, the day after Thanksgiving shop-fest, the day when retailers get their books back in the black but have you heard of Small Business Saturday? Don't spend all your money on Black Friday, save some for Small Business Saturday. Small Business Saturday is a nationwide initiative in it's 4th year to support small business. The idea is simple and has far reaching benefits. Spending money in your community, adds to city coffers, encourages job growth, and supports local public services like the library. All this just from doing something you love to do! Also, if you are a small business owner find out how you can take part.


Shop local, support small business, and in turn support the local economy. You don't have to drive out of San José to get your shopping needs met, the city has lots of great independently owned businesses and you can save money on gas too.

SBA Waives Loan Fees

Logo Image for Small Business AdministrationThe Small Business Administration's San Francisco district office has had a record year of lending; approved loans are up 50% from 2010. Now the SBA has announced that it is waiving fees for loans under $150K.  Of course, this is fantastic news for folks seeking SBA funding but it also paints a brighter picture for the small business economy in general.  At one time, SBA loans were dried up so it is great news that SBA financing is back.

New Jobs Module Added to ReferenceUSA + Extra Downloads

logo image for ReferenceUSAReferenceUSA has added two enhancements to its already powerful business directory.


  1. There is now a Job & Internship module where you can search job listings by location, company name, salary estimate, type of job, keyword, and job posting date. These results are powered through
  2. For those of you who need to generate long lists, say for sales leads, will be happy to know the download limit has increased from 100 to 250.

Silicon Valley Manufacturing Week: Sept. 30 - Oct. 4

Manufacturing Day logo

Manufacturing Day is officially October 4, 2013 but in Silicon Valley we are celebrating with a whole week!


Silicon Valley Manufacturing Week is an opportunity for students, parents and anyone interested in manufacturing to tour manufacturing sites. So, beginning September 30, select manufacturers in Silicon Valley will open their doors and provide site tours. It is a great opportunity to see what modern day manufacturing looks like, what local manufacturers make, what skills are needed in the industry, and what kinds of jobs are available. You must register in advance for these tours and sites are located throughout the Bay Area.

ReferenceUSA: Free Online Training

ReferenceUSA Logo ImageReferenceUSA is offering our customers free online training throughout October, November, and December. If you have never used ReferenceUSA before or are an experienced user, you will find a training that will interest you. All you have to do is register online.*


*Users should have an Internet connection and phone line to participate.


Also, did you know that ReferenceUSA provides direct support to our customers? So, if you are at home using ReferenceUSA and need help, you can contact them directly by phone or email.

SJ Storefronts Initiative

Image of Open signSJ Storefronts Initiative is a grant program aimed at enhancing downtown San José by helping small businesses lease vacant retail space.  These grants will help offset the costs of City permits, fees, and taxes.  City of San José Office of Economic Development encourages proposals from applicants such as entrepreneurs, sole proprietors, non-profits, small business owners, contractors working with small businesses and/or property owners,  and landlords or property owners working with prospective businesses.