The Zcash Community Grants (ZCG) program funds independent teams to perform major ongoing development (or other work) that benefits the Zcash ecosystem. Grants are chosen by a five-person committee whose members are elected by the Zcash Community Advisory Panel (ZCAP).
Three of the current members’ terms are expiring at the end of this year (Amber O’Hearn, Michael Harms and Jason McGee). Therefore, we are inviting nominations for an election to be held in December.
How to Stand for Election to the Zcash Community Grants (ZCG) Committee
Anyone can stand for election to the ZCG committee. Existing members may stand for re-election, and there are no term limits.
Candidates should submit a forum post (ideally five paragraphs or less) in the ZCG Elections category of the Zcash Community Forum, announcing their candidacy, and outlining why they believe they should be elected to the ZCG Committee. Community members will have an opportunity to ask candidates questions directly by replying to their individual posts.
The deadline for nominations is 09:00 UTC on Monday 4th December 2023.
We cannot prevent anyone from talking about their candidacy in other media, but we encourage candidates to use the forum threads as their primary method of “campaigning.” Doing so will make it easier for Zcash community members to interact with and assess candidates.
In mid-December the Zcash Foundation will host a community call, during which the candidates will have an opportunity to introduce themselves, and answer questions from the Zcash community.
After the community call, ZF will open a Helios poll of ZCAP to select three candidates to join the ZCG Committee. The poll will close at 09:00 UTC on 1st January 2024. As with previous polls, the election will be decided by approval voting. The three candidates with the most approval votes will become the new ZCG Committee members. They will serve a one-year term, ending on 31st December 2024.
Prospective candidates should beaware of the Conflict of Interest policy (see below).
About the Zcash Community Grants Committee
The largest slice of the Zcash Dev Fund is earmarked for major grants “to fund independent teams entering the Zcash ecosystem, to perform major ongoing development work (or other word) for the public good of the Zcash ecosystem”. While the funds are administered and disbursed by the Zcash Foundation (ZF), applications for major grants are subject to approval by a five-seat Major Grant Review Committee, which is elected by the Zcash Community Advisory Panel (ZCAP).
The Committee reviews, assesses and approves or rejects grant applications. Committee members currently meet for brainstorming sessions every week, with formal committee meetings held every two weeks.
The first Committee was elected in September 2020, and adopted the moniker Zcash Open Major Grants (ZOMG). The second Committee was elected in December 2021, and re-branded itself Zcash Community Grants (ZCG).
The Committee is responsible for reviewing, assessing and approving or rejecting grant applications, in accordance with the strictures and guidelines set forth in ZIP 1014. Currently, formal Committee meetings are held every two weeks, and the Committee meets informally for brainstorming sessions on a weekly basis.
From January, Committee members will receive a nominal stipend of $650 per calendar month from ZF (paid as shielded ZEC). This stipend may be subject to review, given the budgetary constraints that ZF currently faces.
Conflict of Interest Policy
As a 501(c)(3) non-profit, the Zcash Foundation is subject to rules regarding private benefit and inurement, and is obligated to have an appropriate policy and processes in place to ensure that actual and potential conflicts of interest are disclosed and managed appropriately, in order to avoid the appearance or actuality of private benefit to individuals who are in a position of substantial authority..
Before taking their seat on ZCG Committee, newly-elected Committee members are required to undergo the ZF’s KYC process, complete a conflict of interest questionnaire, and sign an independent contractor agreement with ZF (to ensure that their status and relationship with ZF is clearly-defined). Additionally, serving ZCG Committee members are required to notify ZF of any new actual or potential conflicts of interest that develop or emerge during their tenure.
The following policies also apply in relation to ZCG Committee members and entities in which a serving ZCG Committee member is an officer or director or otherwise has a financial interest:
- Serving ZCG Committee members, and entities in which a serving ZCG Committee member is an officer or director or otherwise has a financial interest, are ineligible to submit a new grant application to ZCG.
- A person who has submitted a grant application (or who is an officer or director or otherwise has a financial interest in an entity that has submitted a grant application) on which the ZCG Committee has not yet rendered a decision is ineligible to serve as a ZCG Committee member (unless the grant application is withdrawn).
- A person who is a current grant recipient (or a person who is an officer or director or otherwise has a financial interest in an entity that is a current grant recipient) is eligible to serve on the ZCG Committee so long as the decision to accept their grant application was made before they began serving as a member of the ZCG Committee.
- Milestone payout decisions that relate to a serving ZCG Committee member’s grant (or a grant awarded to an entity in which a serving ZCG Committee member has a financial interest) will be taken by the executive director or other officer of ZF.
- Before taking their seat on ZCG Committee, newly-elected Committee members will be required to undergo the ZF’s KYC process, complete a conflict of interest questionnaire, and sign an independent contractor agreement with ZF (to ensure that their status and relationship with ZF is clearly-defined). Additionally, serving ZCG Committee members are required to notify ZF of any new conflicts of interest that develop or emerge during their tenure.
If prospective candidates have any questions about the role, they should post them to this topic on the Zcash Community Forums.