La Plaza Telecommunity
Board of Directors Meeting
Executive Director's Report
July 13, 1999
I attended a reception for Leadership New Mexico on June 16, 1999 at the
home of Mayor Fred Peralta. Leadership New Mexico is a leadership training
program for New Mexico community leaders in areas of education, health,
local government, business, and social services. As I visited with the
participants they were all very interested in the education and training
La Plaza is providing for our community members.
Thom Myers and I attended a reception on June 17, 1999 hosted by the McCune
Foundation and Owen Lopez, the foundation Executive Director. There were
approximately 60 nonprofit organizations representing Taos County. Mr.
Lopez is familiar with La Plaza and encouraged a grant in the next funding
cycle in year 2000.
The Taos Tango III charity golf tournament was held on June 18 and 19,
1999. La Plaza raised $1,550 and we hope to receive $775 in matching funds
from the tournament. Once those dollars are received we will develop the
2nd Annual La Plaza computer contest and give away 2 new computers to the
winners of the essay contest, "Why I Want a Computer"!
I have been attending meetings facilitated by the Fred Peralta and Gus
Cordova for development of an Economic Development office and hiring a
commissioner. This office would act as the point of contact for interested
individuals and businesses to for economic development in the Enchanted
Circle. The mission of the office has a different venue than Taos County
Economic Development Corporation, as they are much more grass roots oriented.
Nancy Montano hosted the Open Studio artist's reception on June 24, 1999.
Twenty-eight artists and their guests attended the party. Also in attendance
were two LP Board members, Reva Suazo and Ira Schwartz, with wife Lorraine.
The artists are people of both creativity and integrity and are so excited
about the classes and learning how to use the equipment, the Internet and
the WWW to market their art. This Open Studio project exemplifies La Plaza's
mission to both the community and the participants. Nancy Montano has done
an outstanding job in the project implementation. If the Board hasn't done
so please visit the web page www.laplaza.org
and find the Open Studio menu item, you will be very pleased.
I met with Dr. Carlos Abeyta, new superintendent with Penasco Independent
School District. I gave a brief history of La Plaza and our association
with the Schools in offering public access and education and training to
the community through the schools computer lab. Dr. Abeyta assured me La
Plaza would be able to maintain presence in the schools for public access.
I will present to the School Board on Tuesday, July 20 the contract for
Internet access in 1999/00.
Penasco Community: Arnold Lopez, Thos Myers, and I met with the
Integrity Networking Solutions engineers on June 22,1 999 and discussed
the options for high speed bandwidth service into Penasco for the schools,
La Jicarita Enterprises, and the community at large. The Town of Taos has
a tower and radios on Picuris Peak used for their 911 calls and we discussed
with Gus Cordova, Town of Taos Manager, La Plaza leveraging their tower
for service into Penasco. Gus supports the idea; however, we have had to
request permission from the property owners, the Weimer Group. We are waiting
to hear the response from their attorney, Jim Brandenburg,
If La Plaza is given permission to use the tower, we will be able
to provide wireless high speed bandwidth to the Penasco schools and our
dial in users.
La Jicarita Enterprises has expressed interest in being included in
this wireless project for access at their school to work offices. They
are wanting to develop a multi-media program in their career and business
Questa Community I am meeting on July 22, 1999 with John Dawson,
office of General Services Department and head of special projects with
Telecommunications. We will begin the discussion for La Plaza to gain ownership
of the State equipment in Questa. If some of you recall, Mr. Dawson and
Chris Gillespie presented to our Board in October, 1999 regarding the Questa
Demonstration Project. If we can gain ownership of the equipment, we can
place our Questa dialin users on the wireless system and provide T-1 line
speed for their dial in service.
Mr. Dawson expressed interest in continuing to develop collaborative
efforts with the State and La Plaza in all of Northern New Mexico.
System Administrator I am in the process of interviewing for the
position of System Administrator. Mats Wichman is helping in the process
by conducting phone interviews to discuss the technical expertise of the
candidates. I hope to make a decision within the next two weeks.
Value Added Services Integrity Networking presented to me, Thos
Myers, and Arnold Lopez a wireless service that provides a Committed Information
Rate (CIR) of 100K with bursts up to T-1 speed. This wireless connection
consists of an antenna and sectorial radios at both La Plaza and the end
user. We are discussing this with several businesses in Taos. Once the
installation costs are incurred, there is a monthly fee for the Internet
access but no monthly fee for a phone line. The wireless service eliminates
any interaction with the local exchange carrier and provides for efficient
and uninterrupted Internet access.
Monthly Statistics for June'99
Public Access Sessions:
Location Total Sessions Total Hrs Avg Session
La Plaza 833 725.07 0.87
Penasco 212 231.50 1.09
Questa 431 291.20 0.68
Of the 833 visits to the Taos lab 145 were from registered users
CLASS TITLE # OF PARTICIPANTS
Public Orientation 6
Intro to Email 7
Intro to WWW 6
Easy Web Design 2
Promote Your Web Site 2
Provided training for 11 Rocky Mountain Youth Corp members - intro to Internet,
WWW, email and Web Design.
NEW REGISTRATIONS FOR JUNE' 99
New Primary Accounts 130
New Secondary Accts 15
CLOSED ACCTS JUNE'99
Past due balance of >50 days 36
User requested 43
Not using 6
Unable to access 9
Secondary accts 4
No reason 8
TOTAL NUMBER OF USERS - as of June 30, 1999 - 2258
Judith Pepper, Executive Director, La Plaza Telecommunity