La Plaza Telecommunity
Board of Directors Meeting
Executive Director's Report

October 5, 1999

Community Development/Outreach

  1. Internet Fair - I met with and discussed an Internet Fair with the following representatives - Lissa J. Henderson, San Antonio Commerce Resource Center, Belinda Padilla, LANL Technology Commercialization, Jenny Cocq, consultant to LANL, and Rita Cordova, the National Center for American Indian Enterprise Development. LANL and La Plaza have had passing discussions about the need for more orientation and education about information technology to business owners and community members. This meeting formalized the discussion and a tentative date of January 20, 2000 has been scheduled at the Sagebrush Convention Center for the Internet Fair. LANL Technology Commercialization will underwrite the costs for the conference.

    LANL is interested in having a follow up conference for electronic commerce and procurement regulations in March or April. This is a wonderful opportunity for La Plaza to collaborate with these 3 national organizations and provide basic orientation to our businesses and community members.

    We are also going to meet with Ken Blair, Sagebrush Inn Owner, and discuss the need for wireless connection to the Sagebrush Convention Center, not only for this conference but also for future meetings with technology requirements.

  2. Penasco Wireless Project - This has been a complicated process in determining how best to provide wireless service to the Penasco School District, community and La Jicarita Enterprises. La Plaza has approval from the two groups claiming ownership of the Picuris Peak, Weimer Group and the La Serna Land Grant. An application has been completed and delivered to the United States Forest Service for approval to install the LYNX radio equipment on the Forest Service Tower on Picuris Peak. Once the Forest Service approves the application the installation can begin and completion of the project ought to be by October 31, 1999.

    The only tower on Picuris Peak that has the capacity for the antennas is the Forest Service tower. To provide the electrical back up power, solar panels will need to be purchased and installed. The solar panels and batteries will be an additional $5000. Penasco School District and La Jicarita Enterprises are incurring the costs of the antennas and radios for the wireless project. I recommend La Plaza incur the $5000 cost of the solar panels and batteries, as La Plaza will be able to network the Penasco server and 5 dialin modems on to the wireless system, thus providing our dialin users T1 speed bandwidth.

  3. Lease of State Equipment for Questa Wireless Project - La Plaza submitted the application to the State Information Services Division to lease the radios and towers to maintain the Questa Demonstration Project. The original project included Plains Electric Coops' T1 microwave up to the State's tower on San Antonio Mountain and then down into the Questa Village.

    One of the compliance items is the continuance of using Plains T1 microwave from Taos to San Antonio Mountain. Plains Electric Coop has not agreed to the use of their tower as La Plaza will be conducting commercial use through their T1 line. The State is in discussion with Plains Electric for approval of a Memorandum of Agreement to continue the project.

    I am waiting to hear from John Dawson with the State for instructions in how to pursue the lease agreement.

Third Party Funding

  1. USWEST New Ventures grant - notification was received that La Plaza was not chosen to receive the $10,000 award to train 10 youth in web design.

  2. Department of Education, Community Technology Center grant - the $860,000 proposal La Plaza submitted was not funded in this grant cycle. I will investigate other funding sources and will revise and submit the proposal before the end of 1999.

  3. Benton Foundation - La Plaza submitted a proposal for the third phase of Open Studio: Arts Online, a $15,000 initiative to train the current 30 artists in web design to market their art products online. Notification will be received by October 15, 1999.

Monthly Statistics

  1. Public Access Users
    Location  Total Users  Total Hrs. Avg. Sess
    La Plaza      940         850       0.90
    Penasco       338         406       1.20
    Questa        204         130       0.64
  2. Classes
    Class Title           # Participants
     Public Orientation           16
     Intro to Email                8
     Intro to WWW                 16
     Easy Web Design               7
     HTML                          5
     Promote Website               5
    Total                         56
  3. September Registrations
     New Primary accounts         95
     New Secondary                17
     Reactivated                  18
     Scholarship                   1
     Free Acct                     1
    Total                        132
  4. Telephone Stats
     Tech Support Calls          225
     Billing                      52
     New Accounts                 45
     Hours                        25
     Classes                      21
     Web Site                     11
     Other                       219
    Total                        598
  5. Closed Accounts in September
    Past due balances of > 50 days:
     173 past due notices were sent
     125 subscribers responded with payment)
    Closed accounts - nonpayment  48
    Closed accounts per user requests
     User Moving                  12
     Not Using                     6
     Unable to access              1
     Temporary Acct                1
     No reason given               4
     Modem not working             3
     Opened in error               1
    Total                         28

Fiscal Information

  1. 1998 Audit - The Executive Committee held a conference call with Nesbitt Hagood, CPA, on Wednesday, September 19, 1999 for the presentation of the 1998 audit.

Respectfully submitted,

Judith Pepper, Executive Director, La Plaza Telecommunity