December Vestry Meeting Minutes

Monthly Meeting of the Vestry

St. Michael’s Episcopal Church

December 10, 2013

Attendees: Mother Leslie, Vicki Barnett, Dan Botticello, Molly French, Janet Hansen, Greg Hume, Pat Kennedy, Dean Scribner, Mick Sutter, Laura West

Guest: Tim Matlack

Dean Scribner opened the meeting with prayer at 7:35 p.m.

Actions Taken

  1. Vestry approved the November 2013 meeting minutes with amendments; Vestry approved the treasurer’s report.
  2. Vestry approved the transfer of $11,000. from the St. Michael’s Fund to the operating fund.
  3. Vestry approved the designation of $5,000. from Mtr. Leslie’s salary as housing allowance for IRS reporting purposes.
  4. Vestry went into executive session to discuss the prospective 2014 budget.
  5. Vestry approved the bid from Homestead Tree Experts for tree removal.

Stewardship campaign report and progress report: Tim Matlack

The meeting began with a presentation and updates from Tim Matlack on the current state of the “Moving Forward in Faith” exploration committee and this year’s stewardship campaign. Pledges currently stand at $247,315.  There are several outstanding pledges still expected, so Tim’s projection for 2014 is $255,000.  There was some discussion about the reasons for the lower pledged amount this year, and concerns expressed that we’re not finding more new member pledges.  In terms of church attendance, Mtr. Leslie noted most members are still active and coming but not as frequently. Children’s chapel drives a lot of the 10 am service attendance by families, and Mtr. Leslie is exploring whether we could continue children’s chapel through the summer.  We need to continue to find other ways to reach new members. Tim will make one more announcement about the stewardship campaign at the 8 am service.  The Vestry thanked Tim for his report and his leadership of the stewardship campaign.

Because of the lengthy discussion of budget and finance matters we bypassed the usual Abundance, Cheers & Tears sharing.

Minutes and Treasurer’s Report: There were three amendments to the November vestry meeting minutes; the minutes were approved as amended. The treasurer’s report was approved.

Finance Committee Report: As previously agreed, the Vestry voted to approve the transfer of $11,000. from the St. Michael’s Fund to the 2014 operating fund.  Continuing our discussion of the harvest festival from last month, we decided to postpone a final decision about the distribution of the harvest festival proceeds until after the final 2014 budget is approved in January.  The Finance Committee will send suggestions to the vestry in January to make sure we set aside seed money for the 2014 festival but also set aside some funds for major maintenance or another designated purpose after the final budget is complete.  Until the January vestry meeting, Scott Mann will keep harvest festival proceeds separate in order to pay any outstanding bills from the festival, and will await the vestry’s decision about the distribution of the remaining proceeds after the January meeting.

On other matters, Ed Menoche has developed a check card procedure that is consistent with the recommendation of the audit committee; the vestry will receive the edited proposal in January.  Mtr. Leslie distributed a housing resolution that $5000. of her salary be designated as housing allowance for IRS purposes. The Vestry approved the resolution.

2014 Budget Discussion: Mtr. Leslie distributed copies of the 2013 budget and the proposed 2014 budget for discussion. The proposed 2014 budget is based on estimated $255,000. pledge income. Mtr. Leslie reviewed and explained the numbers for each category. Projected miscellaneous income shows an increase because of projected rental income.  Laura West thinks that we will receive a tax refund for one more year due to the health care refunds, but this has not yet been figured into the budget and the Finance Committee will double check this.  The parish administration costs are budgeted to be slightly higher except for the rectory phone expense and postage.  We won’t be finished with the Pitney Bowes contract until later in 2014. We are budgeting slightly lower for church school expenses and slightly more for adult education. Vacation bible school costs run slightly higher than the income it brings in (this goes into “other income”).  Nursing home ministry costs are budgeted to be lower; the costs of the diocesan council meeting will be higher. The music fund needs to increase to support an occasional supply organist. Budget for the senior youth group will remain the same; Mtr. Leslie plans this winter to talk about longer-range plans for the senior youth group. The total budget for parish activities is therefore $6,750. The diocesan pledge is always 10%, and we’ve traditionally given 2 1/2% for mission and outreach.  The income from the yellow envelope collection isn’t yet in the budget and shows up under “special income.”

There was discussion of salaries and benefits for the 2014 budget. The diocese recommends a 1.75% COLA increase. In the prospective budget Helen budgeted for a 2% increase.  Mtr. Leslie distributed handouts on job descriptions of all staff. The Vestry agreed to go into executive session to discuss budget.

Vestry Nominations Process: A number of good candidates have been proposed and will be approached by Vestry members.

Rector’s Report: Mtr. Leslie has some schedule items that she will circulate by email.

Senior Warden’s Report: Pat Kennedy thanked everyone.  Since this is Pat’s last meeting, Mtr. Leslie and the vestry thanked Pat for her excellent leadership.

Junior Warden’s Report: Mick obtain three bids for tree removal.  All of them ran ca. $3,100-3,300. for complete tree removal, including stump removal.  Mick suggested we accept the bid from Homestead Tree Experts for $3,100. Vestry approved the bid.

Vestry Liaison Reports: Due to the length of the meeting we postponed reports till the next meeting.

Vicki Barnett volunteered to lead prayers at the next Vestry meeting. The meeting adjourned at 10 pm after Compline.

Respectfully submitted,

Vicki Barnett, Register

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