Executive Director's Report
May 11,1998
  1. The Internal Revenue Service sent the Letter of Determination with an exempt status under 501 (a) described in section 501 (c) (3) for La Plaza Telecommunity. The letter also states the IRS determined La Plaza is not a private foundation within the meaning of section 509 (2) of the IRS Code because we are an organization of the type described in section 509(a)(1) and 170(b)(1)(A)(vi).

    (I will review the other sections verbally.)

    Based on this information from the IRS the Board will want to review the name of La Plaza Telecommunity Foundation, Inc. The implication of La Plaza being a foundation confuses people with the mission of La Plaza as some people have inquired as to our giving campaign. I recommend the name be revised to La Plaza Telecommunity, Inc.

  2. The Essay Contest, Why I want a Computer was very successful with 130 essays submitted for the contest. The winners were both from Questa; Sasha Kitchens, a junior at Questa High School and Drake Malu, an 11 year old boy being home schooled. The story is on-line and a full page story was published in the Taos News. Arnold Lopez represented La Plaza, congratulated the winners on their winning essays, and presented the computers to the winners.

    To Nancy Montano, A job well done! Nancy developed a committee of community people who represented Taos, Questa, and Penasco to read the essays and determine the winners. Thanks so much to Bob Romero, Carol Rael, Cynthia Vigil, Frank Samora, Dr. Linda Sonna, Joyce Romero, and Chandler Barrett for their time, effort, and support of this special project.

    The winners were thrilled beyond words. The staff became aware of an auxiliary responsibility we have to the youth in our communities; and that is, providing assistance in obtaining their own computers.  We will begin a campaign for community and corporate support for next years essay contest to give away 2 computers in the 3 communities of Taos, Questa, andPenasco.

  3. Dr. Forouz Joucar, evaluator for the W.K. Kellogg Foundation grant, is completing the third year evaluation. She will make a presentation atthis Board meeting.

  4. Antonio Gomez, Kellogg project manager, has rescheduled his visit for September rather than June.  As Kellogg approved the supplemental funding for the teacher training project, Mr. Gomez will conduct a review of both the 3 year grant and the supplemental funding.

  5. I met with Jeffery Morgan, Director of Presbyterian Medical Services Foundation, Gene Goetz, Questa Health Clinic Director, and Barbara Hau on April 22, 1998.  We discussed the information technology services provided by La Plaza specifically to the health community through the Department of Commerce grant and the lessons learned. We discussed the free public access provided by La Plaza at the Questa Youth Center which is managed by PMS Questa Youth Center. Barbara suggested training for the direct care health providers in accessing and using health information found on the WWW. I requested consideration by PMS in sponsoring the public access in Questa. We will continue the dialogue and build a relationship with PMS Mr. Morgan was very impressed with La Plaza and the services being provided to the users, schools, city government, health care providers, and the community at large.

  6. I met with Gus Cordova and we are developing the contract with the Town of Taos for 1998/99. Mr. Cordova is pleased with La Plaza's services and continues to support the mission of La Plaza.

  7. Questa and Penasco School Districts have sent their E-rate applications to the FCC Schools and Libraries Administration.  To date neither district has received notification from the FCC. Both Districts realize they are responsible for the cost of Internet connection beginning June 1, 1998.  I have offered them the cost of the 56 Kbps line from June 1 - August 1, ($256.00) as they may not receive immediate notification Beginning August 1 a contract for Internet connection will be developed and they will be charged accordingly with or without FCC approval.

  8. La Plaza will be participating in the Department of Labor, JTPA program. We have requested 4 youth for the La Plaza offices and 1 at the Questa Youth Center to assist with public access. We have an intern from the Rocky Mountain Youth Corp for the months of May and June. All youth will attend the Internet classes and take the Easy Web design class. Part of their training and work time will be developing web pages for nonprofit agencies.

  9. La Plaza Dial-In User Stats

  10. On line registration has been implemented for La Plaza users. The user can register at a public access site, in the La Plaza lobby, and with any computer having access to the WWW.  Included with the registration are the Acceptable Use Policy, Billing Policy, and the Learning Center Policy. A secure system provides for payment by credit card and those users have immediate access; otherwise, the user must come to La Plaza or send a check for payment, they are then activitated that same business day. This electronic registration provides an efficient database for the user information and a much easier registration for the user.

  11. Public access:
    Location  #Users  #Hours Average 
    La Plaza
    San Cristobal-no data
    1.33 hours
    1.63 hours
    1.73 hours

  12. April Registrations - 111
    New Primary Accounts - 69
    Secondary Accounts - 21
    Reactivated Accounts - 18
    Scholarship Accounts - 3

  13. April Member Information
    Total members - 87
    Renewals - 2
    New members - 0

  14. Nancy Montano and Michael Bearden sent a thank you to me and the Board for the annual raise given to them and all staff.  Nancy says, I love my job and the people I work with.  It shows by her continued enthusiasm and professionalism. Michael continues to provide technical assistance to the users, Questa and Penasco School Districts, and assists me in administrative duties.

  15. The budgeted and approved T-1 line and new hardware has been installed. We will send a message to our users the last week in May that 28 more digital phone lines will be installed on Monday, June 1, 1998 and the system will be down for approximately one hour. These 28 digital lines will increase La Plazas modems to 76 and will improve the service in the Taos dial-in area.

    Judith Pepper
    Executive Director