The Board has been busy with setting goals, forming mutual agreements on how we will govern, reviewing the budget and reviewing suggestions for changes to the Bylaws.
Recently, the major focus has been on the budget. The Town Halls were well attended and folks asked good questions. The Congregation will vote on the 2023 calendar year budget on December 4 at the Congregational meeting. There will also be a vote on a Bylaws amendment to make the number of Board members a bit more flexible, along with the quorum needed to hold a meeting. Hope to see you all there.
The Budget Committee has been meeting at least twice a month since September to bring what we feel are the best numbers that support staff and minimize the amount of money to be drawn from the Endowment fund. The goal for pledges from members and friends is ambitious but we are beginning a new chapter at East Shore and hope you all will consider supporting the budget goals.
A large determinant for the needed Endowment draws is a lack of an operating reserve. Over the past few years there have been a number of unbudgeted expenses – Holly House sale attorney fees, various costs associated with the changing of ministerial staff and transitions, consultant fees and building maintenance costs, all of which have depleted the operating fund cash balance.
We hope to create a long term reserve plans for operating, facility maintenance and ministerial expenses so the Endowment fund can be stabilized, yet available for expenses when needed. A wonderful goal would be to grow the fund so all major facility expenses could be covered by the gain on the funds. That would however require substantial fresh deposits to the fund. While we want our congregants to be around for a long time, it would be great if many of you include a designated donation to the Endowment fund in your trust or will.
by Geri Kennedy, Board Treasurer