I am writing to remind you that, as decided at our Annual Meeting in May, there will be a congregational meeting on September 24th (following the 10 a.m. worship service) for the purpose of approving our operating budget for the remainder of the fiscal year.
Although it is still relatively early in the fiscal year, the most recent financial information indicates that we will have a deficit of approximately $7,000 at year’s end. Certainly this is not the desired outcome and things may change – positively or negatively – but at present that is what is projected. Also at our May Annual Meeting there were some cuts proposed in both music and mission to bring the budget into balance. At the meeting, we decided not to make those cuts but to wait until September to discuss this.
The Trustees met last week and after a lengthy and frank discussion decided to bring forward a budget for the congregation to consider that had a deficit of approximately $7,000. Ultimately, it is your decision as members to approve this budget or not. I encourage you to participate in this important process of determining how we as a community will meet both meet our mission as a faith community and our fiscal responsibilities. The conversation may be hard and even uncomfortable but I hope, as Reverend Tom Taylor encouraged us to do in his sermon two weeks ago, we have the courage to engage in the conversation and express our beliefs about this important subject.
While voting to stick with the deficit budget this year, the trustees also passed a motion saying that during the budgeting process next spring we would ask all funding departments to reduce their spending by 2% or an appropriate percentage based on recent historical deficit averages. And, the Trustees would commit to bringing forth to the annual meeting a balanced budget that was realistic and achievable.
Yours in faith,
Stephen Hyde, Church President
SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 24 at 11 a.m.
Pursuant to Articles VII and X, SECTIONS 3, 4 and 5 of the BY-LAWS OF THE FIRST CONGREGATIONAL CHURCH UNITED CHURCH OF CHRIST, Burlington, Vermont:
A special congregational meeting will be held at 11:00 AM on Sunday September 24, 2017 for the purpose of voting to accept the budget for the remainder of the fiscal year 2017-2018 as presented by the Board of Trustees. Linda Elrick, Clerk