Action Committee, March 2, 2016

 First United Methodist Church of Santa Rosa 
Next Step Action Committee Meeting Notes
Wednesday, March 2, 2016 – 5:00 p.m.
Montgomery Campus          

Members/Attendees: Mary Brunet, Business Administrator; Norm Bryan, Chair of SPRC; Tokasa Buinimasi, Fijian Language Ministry; Blake Busick, Pastor; Lynn Goodison, Chair of the Trustees; Norm Hardin, Trustees; Trey McAlister, Action Committee Chair; April Nichols, SPRC; Naomi Niimi, SPRC; Paul O’Rear, At-Large; Greg Roth, Chair of Finance; Bill Stephens, Lay Leader; and, Heather Young, Finance.

Trey welcomed everyone and Pastor Blake opened the meeting with a prayer.


Operating Cash Flow Forecast

Greg reported that he and Mary had undertaken a cash flow analysis of the operating budget.  He stated that the analysis indicates that from now to the end of 2016, it is forecasted that the Church will spend $67,000 more in operating cash than it will receive. Further, the forecast suggests emergency operating funds will be needed by the end of April and that emergency operating funds will be exhausted by the end of July. If emergency operating funds are exhausted, immediate spending cuts will be necessary. The forecast does not include any future decreases in expenses or increases in revenues.


Finance Committee Recommendation – Contingency Plan to Reduce Expenses

Greg reported that the Finance Committee recommends that the Action Committee include in its recommendations to the Church Council on March 12, 2016 a contingency plan to reduce expenses.  The Finance Committee recommends:

That all operations of the Church prepare two contingency plans by April 30th.  The two contingency plans would be a reduction of cash payments effective May 2016 through the end of 2016 in the following amount:

Plan 1:  A reduction of 5.1% or $28,000 

Plan 2:  A reduction of 7.7% or $42,000

The contingency plans are recommended by Finance so that reductions can be thought through in a calm manner rather than on an emergency basis; and that any staff affected by reductions can be given an earlier notice.

Norm Bryan clarified that any contingency plan developed by the Staff Parish Relations Committee for reductions would remain confidential.


Finance Committee Recommendation – Develop a Contingency Plan for the Sale of Real Estate

Greg brought forward a recommendation from the Finance Committee that the Action Committee include in its recommendations to the Church Council on March 12, 2016 that the Church develop a contingency plan for the sale of real estate.

After discussion by the group which touched upon a variety of points and counter points of the suggested plan, the Committee decided to focus upon its more immediate charge to address the operation budget gap (increasing revenue and reducing expenses).  It was further agreed that this topic would be postponed until May.


Past Giver Report

Norm Bryan reported that he and April continue to make individual contacts of this group.  He indicated that the Church will use the same letter developed by Paul and Mary for the proposed mini campaign to outreach and communicate with this group as well. 

Mary reported that forty-four non-pledging active participants in the Church will be individually contacted by telephone.


Recommended March Stewardship Plan

Paul presented a mini stewardship plan that he and Mary have been working on that is recommended to launch on March 6th and conclude on Palm Sunday (March 20th).  The plan includes:

  • Messages at worship along with personal interviews and testimonial clips about giving
  • A letter to the congregation with a new pledge card and an email notification
  • Follow-up with individual contacts

Heather asked about the estimated cost of the stewardship plan.  Mary indicated that it would be about $400.00.


Approval Process of the March Mini Stewardship Campaign

Trey indicated that under the Book of Discipline, page 197, the Finance Committee "may delegate the responsibility to either a sub-group or task force that would plan, strategize, and implement ways to generate more resources".  Given the importance of moving forward at the earliest possible date Trey requested that Greg contact the Finance Committee and seek their approval for the Action Committee to implement the proposed campaign this week.  The group thought it important to move forward with this action step before the formal report and recommendation to the Church Council scheduled for March 12th. Greg indicated he would contact the Finance Committee immediately by email. 

Note:  Greg did make immediate contact with the Finance Committee. No objections were raised by the Finance Committee and the Action Committee will move forward with the mini stewardship campaign launching on March 6th.


Recommendations to Church Council on March 12th

Trey will provide the Church Council with a report of the work and recommendations of the Action Committee on March 12th.  The report will include an update on the work of the mini stewardship campaign and a recommendation for a contingency plan to reduce expenses as outlined by the Finance Committee.


While no next meeting is scheduled at this time, Trey will contact committee members in the near future to schedule a meeting.

Notes taken by: Pamala Stephens

C: Committee Members

     Dick Reichert, Chair, Church Council        

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Event Date: 

Wed, 03/02/2016 - 17:00