Anza Community Hall board approves land donation for new septic system

Audience attendance is about 30 persons at the member meeting of the Anza Community Building Inc. Thursday, Aug. 29. Diane Sieker photo

The Anza Community Building board of directors met Thursday, Aug. 29, for the member meeting of the Anza Community Building Inc. The meeting was attended by about 30 people.

Present were Secretary Noel Donahue, President Johnathan Schmidt, Treasurer Barbara Ann Keller, Keith Richardson, Vice President Barbra Janelle, Kimberly Patke and Mike Patke. Director Terry Gormley Seddon was not in attendance because of an excused absence for vacation.

After the Pledge of Allegiance, Schmidt established that a quorum existed and called the meeting to order.

Donahue explained that to complete the land donation needed for a new septic system from CLG Corporation to Anza Community Building Inc. that she needed a new resolution authorizing her to negotiate the transfer, sign any necessary documents of behalf of the corporation and accept the donation. It was agreed to authorize this negotiation so the transfer could commence.

Crystal Castro of the High Country 4-H Club made a presentation about a talent show the club wants to hold April 4, 2020, requesting to use the hall for the event. Poised and confident, she voiced the request perfectly, and it was granted without hesitation by the board to allow the event to be held in the hall, free of charge.

Olivet University Associate Dean of Art and Design Zimou Tan made a presentation about inviting famous artists from around the world to paint scenes from Anza in a plein air event and show.

Tan explained that plein air painting is about leaving the studio behind and experiencing painting and drawing in the landscape, of the landscape. The practice goes back for centuries but was made into an art form by the French Impressionists. Their desire to paint light and its changing qualities, coupled with the creation of transportable paint tubes and the box easel – the precursor to the plein air easels of today – allowed artists the freedom to paint “en plein air,” which is the French expression for “in the open air.”

Tan stressed that the varied and beautiful landscapes in Anza are more than worthy of this event. His presentation was met with hearty applause and pledges of support.

Former Director Jackie Hare stood and made a plea for the community to become members in the hall.

Janelle read the minutes from the last meeting, and the minutes approved as read.

Schmidt spoke about the low meeting attendance and membership.

“At many meetings, there are only one or two members in attendance,” he said. “Membership numbers remain low. There are both funding and staffing issues for the warmup/cool-down center operations. Our utility costs increase and to date we have had zero use of the facility when we open for days of high heat.”

He also spoke of the progress on putting together another comedy show and asked for confirmation or any objections to the date of Oct. 26, for such an event. Confirmation was granted. He also spoke of the need to buy a new generator for the hall because all the used generators they have found could not meet the state air quality requirements.

Spending a combination of grant and hall funds of approximately $15,000 to purchase a new generator was approved by the board.

Keller gave a report on the hall finances including pending grant reimbursements.

“Balance in the general account: $7,930.09; restricted account: $5,550.18; savings account: $4,798, Paypal: $276.51. Awaiting a reimbursement check from the CBDG 2017-2018 grant of $5,608.07,” Keller said.

Keller also said that membership numbers were the lowest seen in years at 161 members.

Donahue read a detailed report of all the issues related to the existing 2017-2018 Community Development Block Grant with the amount remaining, the new 2019-2020 $100,000 CDBG grant to pay for the new septic system, the progress of obtaining a generator for the building, plus the progress of negotiations to close the Dollar General deal that has been in the works for over three years. The Dollar General arrangement will result in about $100,000 in improvements to the hall and make it possible to add a new septic system.

Regarding the generator, Donahue said, “Steve Gardner has offered to donate his time to run the propane line to the generator location. We will need to prepare the site, dig the trench for him and pour the slab. We will also need to purchase the blocks and build the block fence around the generator.”

Schmidt asked Donahue to confirm that all notifications and postings were done for the coming hall board of director’s election. She confirmed that the date of the elections is set for Thursday, Sept. 26. Local newspapers were notified, and the meeting notice was posted on the bulletin board.

All current board members were elected to 2-year terms last year and are therefore not up for reelection; however, a director is needed to complete the term that Hare was elected to serve. All existing board members terms will expire at the annual meeting in September 2020.

Kevin Short, general manager of Anza Electric Cooperative, made a presentation about AEC having spent $8,000 to bring the U.S. Department of Agriculture food distribution back to Anza. This distribution will occur in the parking lot of AEC on the second Saturday of each month, beginning in September. Volunteers will be needed to help unload and distribute the food, provided by FIND. He also offered help from AEC by providing volunteers to help staff the warmup and cool-down center.

The next general membership meeting and election is slated for Sept. 26, at 7 p.m. at the hall.

The attendance of the meeting was gratifying to the board.

“It was the best meeting that wasn’t a voters meeting in several years with an attendance of over 30 people,” Schmidt said.

Anza Community Hall board meetings are open to the public, and everyone is encouraged to attend.

Anyone interested in becoming a member of the Anza Community Building Inc. can call (951) 428-0901. Memberships are $20 per person or family with one vote per family or person and $35 per business with one vote. Cash and checks are accepted.

For more information, visit the hall on Facebook at or on the web at

Diane Sieker can be reached by email at