All JCO Board members were present. Other members present were Miriam Rosen and Fred Rothenberg.
Alan reported that things were still unusual [due to the corona virus]; Houses of worship can now be opened at 25% occupancy. We have the option to consider opening. Alan asked who of the BOD would attend and only one member affirmed. It was decided to continue the services on Zoom.
Finance: Fred Rothenberg, Chairman, gave the report. The summary from the January 3 meeting is attached and was emailed to the BOD previously.
1.We have 80 members; all but 2 have paid dues.
2.The Finance Committee recommends that the Board discuss the loss of members and how to avoid this.
3.The projected net loss for the year of about $11,000 is $5,000 greater than the budget had approved.
4.Contingency fund contributions for the year are over $13,000, bringing the total to about $32,000 (over a three-year period).
5.Total cash balance at May 31, 2021 is projected to be about $86,000, including donor-restricted cash of about $5,000 and Board restricted Contingency fund of about $32,000.
6.Finance Committee suggests that we start the budget process for the year beginning June 1, 2021.
7.Finance Committee wonders if JCO plans to do something special for Passover.
Brochures: The brochure is complete.
Religious Committee: Sheila, Chairman, gave the report. The Rabbi’s contract is up for renewal.
Social Action: Alan gave the report. Last Monday Leah Hecker called Alan to see if she is expected to make the next meals for the homeless.
Facilities: Alan stated everything is in good shape. The 2 new evergreen trees in the front yard are scheduled for pruning.
Publicity: Report by Sharon, Chairman, who asked if we want to place an ad in OVN for Passover; Alan suggested that we do not.
Programs: Cecilia, Chairman, gave the report. Fred asked about the next Enneagram presentation by Nusa Maal. It is this Thursday the 11th at 6PM. This will be published in the Blast.
Renewal of Rabbi’s contract: Sheila asked if we have any comments about the Rabbi. Sharon suggested that she limit her sermon to perhaps 15 or even 10 minutes. Sheila will discuss the contract with the Rabbi and requested other members to accompany her. Janet and Sharon offered. Sheila will set up the Zoom meeting.
Passover: The first night, the 27thof March, occurs on a Saturday night. Janet suggested making baskets filled with assorted ingredients for Passover preparations, and delivering them to people who RSVP for the service. Alan appointed Janet, Debe, Sheila, and Cecilia to be responsible for acquiring all of the items needed for a basket. Janet changed a prior motion so that it includes providing baskets to all members; Cecilia seconded. Motion passed with one negative.
Telephone Committee: Miriam offered that, in the past, we have had a telephone committee to call the entire membership. [At that time] each Board member had been assigned a short list of members to call. Miriam offered to be one of the callers. There was no objection to continuing this practice.
The meeting was adjourned at 7:46PM.
Jewish Community of Ojai Board Meeting
08 March 2021
Alan Greenberg called the meeting to order at 6:35 PM. All members were present with the exception of Sheila Cohn. Non-BOD members present were Bob Birk, Miriam Rosen, and Fred Rothenberg.
Alan gave a prayer focusing on the medical recovery of Sid Cohn, husband of Sheila Cohn.
Opening comments: Alan presented two items pertinent to the Board:
1. Leah Hecker and her son have served the March meal to the homeless, completing the JCO obligation for this fiscal year. He commended Leah for her service to the community.
2. Alan was approached by Gene Zubrinsky, a gentleman who wanted to rent the Sanctuary for his wedding to Brenda Barnes. After discussion, Gene and his future bride decided to become members of JCO, which eliminates the rental fee, security deposit, and extra insurance.
Minutes: Alan asked for a motion to approve the minutes of the February meeting. Janet so moved and Andrew seconded. The motion passed unanimously.
Finance Committee: Fred Rothenberg, Chairman, gave the report.
This year's highlights are:
1) The projected net operating loss for the current year is about $7K higher than the approved budget.
2) The cash balance does not include the restricted contingency fund.
3) This year’s contingency fund contributions were about $13K; the total contingency fund is now at about $33K.
Draft budget for year beginning June 1, 2021:
1) Operating revenue: $85,100;
2) Operating expense: $80K;
3) Net income [loss]: -$5,100;
4) Unrestricted cash balance: $ 39,794;
5) Contingency fund cash balance $45K.
The committee believes that 2021-2022 offers an opportunity to generate additional memberships with a significant number of high-end programs.
The BOD approved the draft budget with minor alterations.
The next Finance committee meeting is on April 7th at 4:30.
Social Committee: No report offered.
Religious Committee: Nothing to report.
Membership: Larry Steingold, Chairman, commented, that we need to have activities to keep members. If we have the money, we need to do something to increase membership.
Some programs have been great; Doc Pomus (March 13 @ 7PM on Zoom) will be wonderful. Also scheduled is Golda’s’ Balcony on April 3, at 7PM. We need to gear for entertainment and let people know. It was suggested to send out an eBlast about individual programs.
Larry reported that he had googled “Jewish Ojai,” and “Chabad” shows up; JCO shows up as an auditorium. There was a discussion about our email presence.
Publicity: Sharon West, Chairman, read the proposal for ads for Passover in the Ojai Valley News and Ventura County Star. The details had been circulated to all the Board members prior to the meeting (attached). The Board agreed to spend a total of $414 for ads.
The Rabbi has written an article about Passover, which was circulated to the Board. This will be presented to the Ojai Valley News for publication.
Social Action: Nothing to report.
Facilities: Alan Greenberg, Chairman: Sheila requested that we install air conditioning in the kids' room upstairs. Alan said he had already done that.
Program Committee: Cecilia Starin, Chairman.
The next program is Saturday night March 13th; a film named Doc Pomus.
On April 3rd, there will be a presentation of Golda’s Balcony, which was an award winning Broadway hit.
Passover - Gift bags for Passover: There was a discussion of putting out another Blast to members about the gift bags. A motion was made by Janet to extend the deadline for requests by one week until March 16th; Debe seconded it. The motion passed unanimously.
Good and Welfare: Cecilia reluctantly stated that her 2-year commitment on the Board ends at the end of May, and that she needs to step down. She graciously commented that she has warm feelings toward us all.
Miriam Rosen commented on Passover bags, clock batteries, Chabad and Rabbi Lotker program.
The meeting was adjourned at 8:02PM
Submitted by Sharon West, MD
Alan Greenberg, President, called the meeting to order at 6:41PM. All Board Members were present.
Janet made a motion to accept the minutes of the April 12th BOD meeting; Debe seconded. The motion passed unanimously.
Finance Committee: Fred Rothenberg, Chairman, previously had circulated the data to the Board Members. He gave the report. There was no Finance Committee meeting in May. There are 81 member units. Nearly all of the member dues for the current fiscal year have been paid; the majority of those outstanding being from members with multi-pay plans. This fiscal year, which ends on May 31, will show a loss of about $5,000 over budget. Unrestricted cash at the end of the fiscal year will be about $50,000 plus a loss of about $5,000 over budget. Unrestricted cash at the end of the fiscal year will be about $50,000 plus a Contingency Fund of about $33,000.
Fred also commented that we have 81 members who have to re-up. He is concerned about keeping them and urged a series of messages telling members about plans and events for the coming year.
Alan noted that it is quite impressive that we have not raised the dues in over 7 years.
Membership Committee: There is still no reason to have a report. Once we are up and running full time, then the committee will reconvene.
Facilities Committee: Alan gave the report. Everything is being taken care of; the facility is clean: both inside and outside have been well-maintained.
Publicity Committee: Sharon West, Chairman, gave the report. She showed the ads placed for the Passover Service in the Ventura County Star and the Ojai Valley News; two weekly notices in the Events section of the Ojai Valley News for the Passover Service; and an article by Rabbi Lisa Bock on Passover, which was published in the Ojai Valley News.
Security Committee: No report needed.
Program Committee: Cecilia Starin, Chairman, gave the report. Golda’s Balcony will be shown May 22 at 7PM on Zoom. The Zoom link has been sent out in an email.
Fred added that he is concerned about losing members and suggested that we need more programs. He also wondered if there were an additional email or address that we could use to incentivize people.
Further programs were discussed. Shabbat under the Stars is planned for late June. A discussion was held about having a special event for members and potential members only, to celebrate our re-opening.
Debe suggested that we need an event chair, and Sharon said we should plan on having a phone committee to call everyone, as we will need to have a strong idea of how many to plan for.
The target date is mid-June.
Religious Committee: Sheila Cohn, Chair, mentioned the meeting with the Rabbi that was held with Debe and Sharon. The main focus was to involve the Rabbi more so that she becomes part of the JCO community. The decision of the Rabbi/Dinner committee will be discussed further in Old Business.
Sheila described the return to the Temple in the last two weeks. All members in the Sanctuary wore masks.
Social Action: No report.
1. Grants: Alan stated that we would receive an $1,800 grant from the Federation without applying for it. Any further funding will require grant applications. The grants are generally given for educational and cultural purposes. The Torah Study classes will be terminated. Instead, the Rabbi suggests Musar classes be led by the Rabbi every other week. Sheila suggested that the Rabbi apply for a grant for the Musar classes. We will not charge for the Musar classes.
Sharon will apply for a grant for two sessions by Nusa Maal on Leadership (later corrected topic as Resilience in Face of Adversity). Cecilia will ask Gil to apply for a grant for the children's activities. Cecilia mentioned that some of the parents are still reluctant to have their children engaged in anything at this time.
2. Services in the Temple: Alan asked for a discussion about continuing services in the Temple. The Temple services would still require someone to check temperatures at the door, the ventilation would be monitored, and seating would be separated. After discussion, Debe made a motion to continue hybrid services (in person and on Zoom). Shlomo seconded. The motion passed unanimously.
3. Dinners with the Rabbi: Sheila gave the report of the committee. Their decision was to only have dinners in member’s homes. Some hosts would be limited to a total of 8 seats, thus allowing for 4 invited member guests. However, other hosts could handle up to 6 invited guests. The dinners are to take place at around 7:40 PM, right after the Oneg.
Alan said that his list of definite invitees and also Sheila's list came in at about 70 people,
The Rabbi is willing to do it twice per month and will even be willing to make a special effort for a dinner on a weekend evening. Sheila requested that BOD members let her know if they are willing to host.
1. Zoom equipment: Rick had sent out to the Board members an estimate of the cost of purchasing Zoom equipment for the Shabbat services. During the last two services he has provided his own equipment. He offered to give the Temple one of his Zoom accounts for this. There was a discussion of who would have to monitor the equipment during the services. Cecilia made a motion to purchase the necessary equipment (approximately $800 plus taxes and shipping) for the Zoom service; Debe seconded. The motion passed unanimously.
2. Discussion of who will monitor the Zoom equipment in the future: For the next 2 weeks,
3. Monthly ads and placements in the Ojai Valley News: Because of the late time this discussion was tabled until the next meeting.
4. New Board Members: Alan stated that the fiscal year ends on May 31. This requires an election with nominees proposed prior to the annual meeting. Cecilia is the only Board member whose 2-year term is up. Alan suggested we push this election back to early June. There was no objection to this.