With the deadline approaching for Zcash community members to announce their candidacy for ZOMG, we’ve published a blog post that outlines how the Zcash Foundation (ZF) is improving its operational support for ZOMG.
Following discussions with ZOMG Committee members, the expected time commitment is increasing 15 hours per month, with the nominal compensation increasing to $1,500 per month, per member. Our goal is to keep the time commitment as low as practicable, in order to avoid discouraging potential candidates from running for ZOMG, so we are also in the process of providing more and better support, with a view to reducing ZOMG Committee members’ time burden.
We have hired an Ecosystem Relations Manager, who will start on October 1st. They will support ZOMG by:
- proactively seeking out and evaluating high quality, impactful grant applicants,
- providing a single point of contact for grant applicants throughout the entire grant lifecycle,
- acting as liaison between the ZOMG Committee and grant recipients,
- monitoring grants’ progress (including assessing progress against milestones),
- coordinating updates to the Grant.io platform, and
- working with the recently-hired Head of Communications to promote the ZOMG programme and the outcomes it creates.
ZOMG will continue to benefit from the administrative support currently provided by ZF (e.g. minute-taking during ZOMG meetings, undertaking KYC and OFAC compliance checks for grant recipients, payment processing and record keeping). Additionally, ZOMG can draw upon the advice and support of our COO, Alex Bornstein, who has 25 years experience in the governmental and non-profit sectors.
Chris Burniske has suggested that ZOMG elections should be staggered, to avoid wholesale turnover of the ZOMG Committee in future. I have put forward an idea (cross-posted below), which would achieve this. I encourage all ZOMG candidates to read this and indicate whether they would be agreeable to enacting it.
There has been much discussion recently about whether ZOMG should become an independent entity. Shortly after I joined ZF, I had several meetings and email conversations with ZOMG, during which it became apparent that there was a mismatch between some ZOMG members’ expectations regarding ZOMG’s ability to unilaterally move towards greater independence, and ZF’s interpretation of ZIP 1014.
To pre-empt any similar mismatch in new ZOMG Committee members’ expectations, I want to make it clear that ZF does not believe that it would be appropriate for ZF to facilitate changing the status or structure of ZOMG in ways that would breach ZIP 1014, and that any proposed amendments to ZIP 1014 should go through the same governance process that created ZIP 1014.
Potential ZOMG Committee members should also be cognisant of the fact that ZIP 1014 imposes certain obligations on ZF relating the Major Grants slice of the Dev Fund. For example, it has been suggested that ZOMG use funds from the Major Grants slice of the Dev Fund to hire its own staff. However, because ZOMG is technically part of ZF, doing that would expose ZF to the risk of being accused of having misappropriated funds by breaching the requirement in ZIP 1014 that “ZF SHALL recognize the MG slice of the Dev Fund as a Restricted Fund donation”, that “MUST only be used to issue Major Grants to external parties that are independent of ZF”.
Therefore, any proposed changes to ZOMG’s status as it relates to ZF may need to undergo legal review (as ZIP 1014 was) to ensure that they are compatible with ZF’s legal obligations, particularly those that relate to its 501c3 status.
We are committed to doing our utmost to make ZOMG a success, within the constraints imposed by ZIP 1014. However, in the event that our efforts are unsuccessful (for whatever reason), we need an objective way to recognise and respond to that.
Therefore, if, after four months of the new Committee (i.e. mid-March), we will call upon the new ZOMG Committee members to vote on whether obstacles to ZOMG’s success remain that cannot be resolved under the current structure. If a majority of the Committee votes that the current structure is unworkable, we will consult the Community on the best way forward.
If a majority of the new ZOMG Committee is of the opinion that insurmountable problems remain, we will consult ZCAP about changing ZIP 1014.