HCCF Board Minutes

March 23, 2021

Holly Loos, Bob Burkart, Pete Cunningham, Gary Marlar, Judy Brougton, Jennifer Strieby, Joe O'Connor, Art Dolben, Mary Bowersock, Bill Bach, Deanne Siddal

Absent:   Linda Shannon

Guest:  Ron Bowersock

The meeting was called to order and a quorum was declared.

Foundation Website Update:  Ron Bowersock showed the changes to the current website highlighting the new versus the old.  The consensus was that the changes are an improvement and there were questions about how easily it can be maintained and content updated.   Ron indicated it is fairly easy and he can show someone how to do this and the tools to do so are built into the site.  Art Dolben volunteered to help with the site as he has experience in programming. 

Secretary's Report:   In the February minutes, the number of "tennis members"  referenced was 242.  This number needs to be verified with Sameh Ghobrial.   Everything else was approved by a motion by Pete and seconded by Gary.

President's Report:  Holly shared copies of the new Foundation information brochure that had been updated by Gary.  It is also available in 'downloadable' PDF form from Gary.  

Rozier Sharp developed a proposal for the 2021 Grant Cycle.  Holly shared copies with everyone and it was approved.

Treasurer's Report:  Pete Cunningham reported the following fund amounts:  
         Endowment:  $442,384.27
         Administration:  $12,4000 (includes $9,000 Duprees holding account)

The opening of the account at Busey Bank has been completed and $7,000 has been transferred there from Chase Bank.   The remainder will be transferred from, and the account closed at Chase when all checks have cleared.

Membership:  Joe O'connor reported there will be the first "Driveway Event" on Wednesday, March 24 at his home.   This will be an information program for members and residents providing updates on the Foundation.  Christine from the Salvation Army will speak as to how the grant has helped that organization help the citizens of North Port.   This program will last 20-30 minutes, the new brochures will be available and it will be an opportunity to thank the "friends of the Foundation".   This session will be for the three neighborhoods on the Price side.  Future sessions will be held for the other neighborhoods, and will hopefully include other grant recipient organizations.  Joe thanked Sameh for his help in organizing this session.

Membership vs. Endowment:  In a continuation of last month's discussion on whether to have an initiative to increase the endowment fund to $500,000 or to let the fund grow through focusing on increasing membership and renewals.   Bob Burkart and Jennifer Strieby emailed supporting information for both "sides" to directors prior to the meeting.  There was extensive discussion on the pros, cons benefits etc. for both sides.  

Both sides agreed that having $500,000 in the fund would provide significant grant funding through the interest garnered, and protect against another year like the past that affected fundraising.  Jennifer proposed not touching the interest until the fund reached that point and not letting the fund go under $500,000.  Bob projected that through increased membership and renewal the fund would continue to grow and reach that level by 2022, and would not limit grant giving.

Concerns are that members are too often approached for funds from the Foundation and others, that the needs of North Port citizens have changed over the years, that giving grants may have become a 'more is better' each year without verifying specific needs, and that grants are used as promised.  Agencies have other funding sources that may be ample.

The Foundation should identify the current needs, be responsible in managing donors money.  The by-laws give the flexibility to the directors to determine the grant amounts and the current formula of fundraising and interest combined is a recommendation, not mandated.

Pete proposed using a portion of the interest income (to be determined each grant cycle) along with any fundraising income for the annual grant amount.  The percent amount will be determined in August at the beginning of the grant cycle, and in years to come.  Doing this will allow the fund to increase through the reinvesting of a portion of the profits.  This will be a policy recommendation rather than a by-law change to allow for flexibility.  Focus still needs to be put on increasing and maintaining membership.

This "policy" was agreed to along with a need to verify the needs in the community.  Jennifer agreed to chair a committee to determine the current needs and agencies providing these.   These identified needs will be considered when determining grants next cycle.

There being no further business Pete moved to adjourn and Bob seconded the motion.

Meeting adjourned.

Next meeting scheduled for April 27, 2021 at 3:00