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BOD Meeting 3-30-21

MCPB/KZYX Board Meeting

March 30, 2021


PRESENT: Marty Durlin, Tom Dow, Bob Bushansky, Renee Vinyard, Dina Polkinghorne, Kathy Rippey, Kate Stornetta, Len Tischler, David Hulse-Stephens, Renee Wilson, Jeff Ellis.

A.    Call to Order:  5:02 PM

B.    Agenda Approval:  Additions to agenda by Tom, then approved 

C.     Minutes of 1/26/21 and 3/4/21 approved

D.    PRESIDENT’S REPORT: Defer discussion of Clay Street Acquisition. Thanks to Kate and Jeff for their invaluable help on the new home search.

E.     GENERAL MANAGER’S REPORT: (full report below)

a.     Fire inspection for Philo studio indicated work is needed on electrical wiring and outdoor brush reduction. Seeking volunteers.

b.     Capital fund: we purchased a year’s subscription to the Foundation Directory. Kathy Rippey is working on seeking grant opportunities. The Capital Fund drive will need all-hands-on-deck for grant writing, fund-raising events, etc.

c.     Quiet Drive/Flash Drive: QD began at the end of February. Slow but steady. FD scheduled for April 22-28.

d.     Community Counts Initiative: Alicia and Marty participating with $6K grant to launch. Two major needs to address in the process: increasing support for the Latinx community and strengthening our service during emergency situations. We will be hiring a bilingual reporter.

e.     Seeking FEMA grant to replace equipment to strengthen our support for regional emergencies.



a.     Finance Committee: Bob reported that the budget is “looking good.” Income exceeds liabilities. Money in the bank account now, but needs will arise related to the fire risk reduction and the new home acquisition. Dina requested that the Board get a financial statement every meeting. Tom said that the current practice is quarterly statements, but there was agreement that more often would be better.

b.     Membership Committee: Renee Wilson reported on the quiet drive: $23,000 in donations so far. Sent out mailer with some response. Goal is $100,000. Flash Drive will be using phone-bank volunteers with Covid protocols (ie, setting up phones outdoors). 

c.     Planning Committee: no meetings. Kathy reports that she is working on financial development and has 8-10 possible sources to approach. She requested to talk with Tom and others about how to approach these.

d.     Publicity: nothing to report

e.     CAB: nothing to report

f.      Policy: Dina reported they are working on small revisions that she will bring to the Board at the next meeting.



a.     Mission Statement revision: Renee Wilson presented a revised Mission Statement to the Board. After small revisions, the Board approved the new statement.

b.     New Home Search:  Kate and Tom announced that an offer was pending on Clay Street property and sought Board approval to make the offer.  Kate reported that she is talking with both Savings Bank of Mendocino and Redwood Credit Union about loan terms. The Board passed two motions: one to approve the offer on the property, the second to approve the pursuit of a loan.

H.    Adjournment: 6:17 PM

Next meeting:  May 25, 2021, 5:00 PM


March 2021

State of the station: We just received our yearly renewal notice from Zoom, confirming that yes, the Coronavirus has been around for more than a year, changing our lives and the way we run the station. Even though radio connects us through sound waves, and the satellite studios were already a big part of our operation in this far-flung county — the idea that we can maintain community without actually being together is being tested. So far, the answer is yes, but it can take a toll. We’ve had two Zoom calls with programmers in the past couple of months, and it’s been nice to be in touch, even digitally. 

Philo studios: We just had a fire inspection — a new CA law mandates regular inspections by local fire departments. Although we did a lot of fire mitigation last year, we have more work to do, and we’ll have to spend some money. Part of it is trimming back more trees and bushes; we are looking for a volunteer work crew. The other problems are in the interior, including wiring, electrical outlets and ceiling coverage.

New home search: As you know, we’ve looked at three places, most seriously at 390 Clay Street in Ukiah, a property that has “presented itself” to KZYX through friends of friends. Staff, board and members of the new home task force toured the half acre on Saturday the 27th, and were generally enthusiastic about relocating there. The most urgent questions: Is there a good location for the NPR dish? (we have done tests, but it isn’t nailed down). Antenna height necessary to reach Laughlin and Cow Mountain is at least 60 feet, 10 feet over City regulations thus requiring planning department approval. Can we put antenna and/or dish on the AT&T building? Are there interference problems, either with AT&T or the City of Ukiah? Is the facility big enough? What upgrades are necessary to make the buildings optimal for KZYX? And so on. More at the meeting.

Capital fund: We’ve purchased a year’s subscription to the Foundation Directory and Kathy Rippey is making a first pass through what grant opportunities may be available for the capital fund. That is as far as we’ve gotten. We need a working group to tackle the various aspects of this effort; for example: grant writing, large gift solicitation, events, outreach/PR. This is in addition to everything we are already doing as a staff, so we need help and leadership from the board and volunteers. I believe KZYX, along with our our supporters, can meet this moment, but it will require a unified, all-station push. 

Quiet Drive/Flash Drive: The Quiet Drive began at the end of February, and it’s slow but steady. The Flash Drive is scheduled for April 22-28. We have a pitch training with NFCB scheduled for Monday 3/29 at 5pm (all are welcome); and new thank you gifts in the works.

KZYX project for CCI/NFCB: As you know, Alicia and I are participating in NFCB’s Community Counts Initiative, along with community stations from around the country. We have a small ($6K) grant to support or launch a project of our choosing. Covid has re-enforced the station’s obligation to cover the county’s diverse Latinx community (about one quarter of the population). We also have an urgent need for staff support during emergency situations. We propose to hire a bilingual reporter who will expand our news effort and strengthen our service to the community during emergencies. We’re hoping to leverage the $6K into more funds to support this new position.

On the horizon: The recently passed stimulus bill contains $175 million for CPB “to prevent, prepare for, and respond to coronavirus, including for fiscal stabilization grants... to maintain programming and services and preserve small and rural stations threatened by declines in non-Federal revenues.” As was the case for the first stimulus package, Sally Kane of NFCB will be at the CPB table negotiating for community radio, and we hope to receive a share. Also, CPB has solicited information about our transmission equipment, asking what it would take to replace it (our transmitters are 17 years old, but Brian says they are well built and relatively easy to repair).  FEMA may offer some funding for these kinds of equipment buys. A rough estimate of the cost to purchase new equipment to back up or replace our transmission equipment is $261K.

Thank for your support,