Wednesday, July 16, 2008

General Board affirms transition plans, sets 2009 budget parameters.

The General Board in its pre-Conference meeting in Richmond, Va., on July 12 affirmed plans for transition to a new organization pending the action of Annual Conference on the resolutions of merger with the Association of Brethren Caregivers (ABC). The board also approved budget parameters for 2009, among other business.

The General Board spent time reviewing the plans for the new organizational structure with ABC and incorporating the functions of the Annual Conference Council, and took action to affirm the transition plans. General secretary Stan Noffsinger announced that the board and ABC were both doing contingency planning in case the resolutions putting the new organization in place were not approved by the delegate body.

The board set budget parameters for its Core Ministries in 2009: projected income of $5,747,000, projected expense of $5,887,000, and a net expense of $140,000. Finance staff emphasized that these parameters represent the spending of accumulated net assets and one-time use of designated funds in order to avoid a much larger net expense for the year.

The financial planning team faced a difficult situation, said treasurer Judy Keyser, having to choose between the option of reducing program and staff, or the use of Core Ministries net assets and designated funds to reduce the deficit. If such measures were not used in 2009, the deficit would come to $381,000, Keyser reported.

Board chair Tim Harvey commented that the General Board is facing difficulties brought on by the economic situation in the country, including rising food and fuel costs, unmanageable travel budgets, health insurance costs, and the declining value of the dollar.

"Is ministry still worth paying for?" asked board member Terrell Lewis, in a statement of encouragement to the church to value its ministries. "I am frightened by this economy. It is scary news. But we have been called to do God's work."

In other business, the board received several reports including the recent work of Brethren Disaster Ministries, the upcoming National Young Adult Conference, and mission reports from the Dominican Republic, Nigeria, and the Sudan Initiative.

The board also welcomed international guests, recognized the service of staff, and board members who are finishing their terms with this meeting: chair Tim Harvey, Russ Betz, Jay Carter, Vicky Samland, and ex officio member Stephen Breck Reid, who has served as Bethany Seminary dean.

Source: 7/16/2008

No comments: