Miami Has Many Attractions for Conference Attendees to Enjoy…

With only a few weeks before the conference, now is a perfect time to familiarize yourself with attractions in the area.  Miami has many wonderful attractions that are not to be missed.  Over the next couple of weeks, we will be featuring attractions in Miami to help you plan your stay. Check back for ideas of attractions to visit.

The Art Deco District on Ocean Drive

Beautiful art deco buildings were revitalized in the 1980s and make up one of the most picturesque neighborhoods in Miami. Enjoy the architecture after spending a little time on South Beach. Ocean Drive is know as a great spot for enjoying a tropical drink while people watching. (Note: Often the restaurants include the gratuity on the bill, be sure to check your bill).

The Miami Design Preservation League’s  provides tours of the neighborhood. More information is available via their information center at 1001 Ocean Drive, Miami Beach.

(305) 672-2014 |
10am – 4pm   Monday – Saturday (closed Sundays and Holidays)

An Update on The Safe Cosmetics Act in the 112th Congress

(L to R) Deborah May, HSMG President Leigh O’Donnell, Congressman Brad Sherman (CA), Feleciai Favroth, Marie Gale

In our continuing efforts to work with Members of Congress to advance the interests of the Handcrafted Soap Makers Guild (HSMG), we would like to update you on the recent progress on the still evolving Safe Cosmetics Act in the 112th Congress.

After hearing the concerns of the HSMG in February and the promise to continue a dialogue with us on behalf of the HSMG, staff members of Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky have been quite responsive in keeping us informed.  In our most recent communication, we learned that a number of the provisions of the original bill are being redrafted.  We are not surprised by this information based on the range of issues discussed in our February meeting.
Although we have not seen any of the new draft language, through our continued engagement with offices involved in drafting the bill, we are optimistic that we will get to see and comment on any proposed language that directly impacts HSMG and the industry.   Furthermore, we remain encouraged that our ongoing conversations with Congresswoman Schakowsky, her staff and our continuing outreach with other Members of Congress will result in more positive conversations and support for HSMG concerns as the legislative proposal is developed and finalized.

Support the HSMG’s Efforts to Ensure Legislative Representation for Soapmakers…

Over the years the Handcrafted Soapmakers Guild has been many things to it many members.  The HSMG has now taken on its biggest challenge yet: monitoring the “Safe Cosmetics Act” and any federal legislation aimed at the cosmetics industry.  An updated version of The Safe Cosmetics Act is  expected to be released later this year.  The  HSMG is working diligently to make sure that soapmakers are not inadvertently affected by this bill or any bill aimed at our industry.

Our country’s legislative system is complex and not easy to navigate, if you don’t have the proper guidance it is nearly impossible to make headway against the currents of bureaucracy.  The HSMG has hired Mary Anne Walsh and Rick Limardo to advocate for handcrafted soapmakers.  Mary Anne and Rick will be at the conference in Miami to answer questions and introduce themselves to the membership of the HSMG.  Since they were hired by the association in September of 2010 they have been working hard for us in Washington and they look forward to meeting some of our members in person.

Having your voice heard in Washington is expensive, costing approximately $9,000 per month.  The Handcrafted Soapmakers Guild needs help from its members to continue this effort. We are relying on donations to our Advocacy Fund. You can help the HSMG by putting a Donate Now PayPal button on your website or blog. Email, Facebook, or Tweet the word…

Its very simple to add our advocacy button. Here’s how:

Add the following code snippet to either the html code on your website or past it in the html view of your blog.

In order to place the “Donate” on your website, update the code below by putting in (1) the URL that the person should return to when the transaction is complete and (2) the text on the return button (i.e. “Return to XYZ Website”). Then place the full code on your website where you want the button to display:

<div style=”height: 60px; width: 200px;”><form action=”” method=”post”> <input type=”hidden” name=”cmd” value=”_s-xclick”> <input type=”hidden” name=”hosted_button_id” value=”S5H66GTAYTRDN”> <input type=”hidden” name=”return” value=”[(1)Put the return URL here]“> <input type=”hidden” name=”cbt” value=”[(2)Put the return button text here]“> <input type=”image” src=”” border=”0″ name=”submit” alt=”Make a donation to the Handcrafted Soapmakers Guild’s Legislative Advocacy Fund.”> <img alt=”” border=”0″ src=”” width=”1″ height=”1″> </form> </div>

***         Values in bold must be contained  within quotation marks ”  ”        ***

If you are adding the code into a WordPress blog:

As a post:

1. Create a New Post:

2. Switch to HTML view.

3. Paste the code

4. Change the return URL and Return text

To add to a sidebar:

1. Open the Appearance section (must be logged in as an administrator)

2 Select Editor

3. Select your Sidebar.php file (may be called some variation on this)

4. Paste code into sidebar

5. Change the return url and donation text

Adding the code to a website:

Decide which page(s) you would like to have the button appear on.  Paste the code into the appropriate place in the HTML code.

If you are using a content management system, such as Joomla or Drupal, paste the code into a new article or into an appropriate template for the theme that you are using.

Fund Use & Accountability

All donations made to the Advocacy Fund are used solely and only for advocacy activities. To ensure the utmost transparency and accountability, the Advocacy Fund will be audited monthly by the Board of Directors and reviewed quarterly by an external Certified Public Accountant (CPA). A full account of funds donated and financial expenses will be provided to any donor upon request.

Donor Listing

Donors may choose to be listed on our website (or not). Amounts of donations will not be disclosed.