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2011 Annual Gathering Report of the Director of Finance, Administration & Communication

by Keith Clark, Director of Finance, Administration & Communication


     During the 2011 Annual Gathering, you will be presented with the financial report for Fiscal Year 2010, receive an update on budget adjustments for 2011 and be asked to adopt a budget for 2012.  You can review the 2010 financial reports here.  The Conference Board of Directors will meet in late May to approve a proposed budget that we will bring to you at Annual Gathering.

How Our Budgeting Process Works

     The Conference operates on a Annual Fiscal Year (January – December).  During the Annual Gathering, the Conference Board of Directors presents a proposed budget for delegates to approve for the next fiscal year.  The budget that is presented at Annual Gathering is based on the most current information available (the prior year performance and the first four months of the current year).  In January, the Conference Board of Directors review the budget to determine if adjustments are needed based on data at the end of the fiscal year.

How To Read the Conference Financials

    The Conference budget is made up of two major sections; “Basic Conference Operations” and “Other Program Funds.”  The Basic Conference Operations portion of the budget derives revenue from three primary sources:

  1. Our Churches Wider Mission Offering taken by local congregations (40% of this offering is sent on to the National Setting to support the ministries of the wider church)
  2. Per Capita Dues (currently $12.00 per member)
  3. Individual “Friends of the Conference” gifts made to the Conference.       

These three sources of revenue are intended to support the basic operations of a Conference.  It is with this revenue that the Conference can provide support and training for local church pastors and lay leadership, help churches call new pastors, provide mediation in church conflicts, provide leadership for our youth & young adult ministries, be a resource center for information, as well as, help foster connections within the Conference and within the communities of Southern California and Nevada; helping us to be united and uniting with others in our community.

     The other portion of our budget is the “Other Program Funds.”  This portion of our budget has derived the majority of revenue from the one time sale of properties the Conference has received in past years.  Because property sales do not occur every year and we do not budget for them, our “Other Program Funds” budget will always reflect a net loss.

     We utilize the “Other Program Funds” to support the development of new church starts, coordinate activities to bring renewal to existing churches, supplement our Basic Conference budget in providing youth & young adult ministry, and partner with Justice & Witness Ministries to fund the Romero Center.

As you review the 2010 Financial reports, here are some explanations from our balance sheet:

Current Assets ($1,226,607): Includes our checking account, cash invested in The Cornerstone Fund, Prepaid expenses (insurance, employee benefits, etc).

Accounts Receivable ($ 106): Includes short term receivables that were collected in early 2011.

Fixed Assets ($2,198,963): Includes properties owned and in use by the Conference, furniture equipment, less accumulated depreciation.

Long Term Assets ($3,514,777): Includes our investments in United Church Funds, Equity Sharing Agreements, Real Estate Held for Sale and long term notes receivable.

Current Liabilities ($133,857) These are current liabilities and include such items as the amount of 2010 OCWM, Special Offerings & National Directed Gifts that were collected during December and the last week of January (designated for 2010) that were not sent to the National Setting until after our books closed in early January, various donations from our local churches to be sent to other ministries such as Pilgrim Place, Pilgrim Pines and Pacific School of Religion.  These funds were sent on in January after our books were closed. 

Long Term Liabilities: We have no long term liabilities

As you review the 2010 Financial reports, here are some explanations from our Revenue & Expense Statement (a.k.a. Income Statement):

Basic Conference Operations

Our Churches Wider Mission exceeded budget by $5,670.  Approximately 2/3rds of our churches support the Our Churches Wider Mission offering.  You can review giving from 2010 here.

Per Capita fell short of budget by $14,963.  Approximately 2/3rds of our churches pay Per Capita.  You can review giving from 2010 here

Due To National is the amount of OCWM (40%), Special Offerings and National Directed Gifts that we sent to the National Setting to support the wider church.

Basic Conference Operations Expenses were under budget in 2010.  In addition to careful management of expenses, we experienced a significant decrease in liability insurance coverage through the Insurance Board.

Basic Conference Net Loss was significantly less than anticipated due to the decrease in expenses during 2010.


Other Program Funds

Total Income was significantly above budget primarily due to gains in our investments (we do not budget for investment gains) and some miscellaneous income not anticipated (rental income).

Total Expenses were under budget.  Each of our programs operated at a lower budget than anticipated.  Additionally, we had savings in Marketed Property Expense due to the sale of our property in Santa Barbara.  This transaction enabled us to repay our loan from The Cornerstone Fund and reduce the interest expense anticipated for the year.

Write Off of Pilgrim Pines Loan This has been separated out in order to demonstrate our performance against budget.  The Conference Board of Directors voted to forgive the loan made to Pilgrim Pines several years ago to support a capital campaign.  Pilgrim Pines is a wholly owned subsidiary corporation of the Conference, this was an internal loan and although this reflects an expense for the Conference and income for the camp in their financials, our consolidated financials are not affected.

Additional Income Due to Property Sale: This figure was also separated out in order that budget performance would be clear.  During 2010, we sold two properties.  The first was our property in Santa Barbara .  This transaction provided a small amount of cash (used to pay off our loan from The Cornerstone Fund) and the balance will be received in accordance with a Note beginning in 2013.  The second property was a property in Mojave received from that congregation when they voted to close the church.  This property was also sold on a note where the Conference will receive payments over time.

The Road to 2013

     When we have had a net loss in the “Basic Conference Operations” portion of our budget, we compensate for it by spending other assets and reducing the amount available for our “Other Program Funds.”  In 2008, when the Conference Board of Directors realized (due to improved reporting) that the Basic Conference Operations was operating at a deficit, they immediately set a course to balance the budget by 2013.  We have made significant progress towards this goal and anticipate having a balanced budget in 2013.  We will be sharing our progress on The Road to 2013 during the Annual Gathering.


     2010 was a year with many transitions.  We saw the transition from having a Full-Time Associate Conference Minister in 2009 to having none.  We transitioned from the interim to an installed Conference Minister.  We have worked hard to make these transitions smooth and have been fortunate to have volunteers available to assist us in the office during this time.  We welcome volunteers who would like to assist with mailings, answering phones, completing data entry, filing or other general office duties.  If that is you, please contact me at the Conference office (626) 798-8082 ext. 12 or at clark@scncucc.org .

     Two additional transitions occurred in January 2011.  The Conference Board of Directors approved a revision to our covenant with Justice & Witness Ministries, allowing us to bring the Rev. Dr. Carlos Correa on to our staff as Associate Conference Minister for Boarder and Latino Ministries.  This covenant allows us to share the gifts of the Rev. Dr. Correa.  Also, in January the Conference Board of Directors approved the new position of Accounting Clerk.  This is a part-time position filled by Stella Perez, who provides support to the Director of Finance, Administration & Communication.  Please take a moment to welcome her at the Annual Gathering.


     During 2010, The Information & News Committee made a complete overhaul of Connecting Voices, our online magazine.  This overhaul not only provided a fresh new look but allows for many improvements to how the website works.  This new site will grow with us as we continue to seek better ways to keep you connected with others around the Conference.

     Additionally, the Information & News Committee made several changes to our website to help make it easier to find the information you are looking for when you visit our site.  If you haven’t visited our site lately, please take time to browse it and let us know what you like or what you think needs to be improved.

     The Connecting Voices editorial committee has reviewed, edited and published over 220 articles since the online magazine was started in the Fall of 2009.  These volunteers are extremely dedicated to helping you have a voice in the life of the Conference and having the opportunity to hear the other voices of the Conference.  We hope you will consider sharing your voice with us by submitting articles about your church events, your opinions, theological reflections , what you do to provide great leadership in your church, your struggles, challenges and stories about the wonderful people who do great things in your congregation and should be celebrated.  Let Your Voice Be Heard!

   2010 saw the beginning of webinars in our Conference.  The use of this technology will continue to grow over time; allowing us to have more meetings online and provide training resources that can be access from anywhere.  Some of our Conference committees are utilizing this technology to meet; allowing people separated by hundreds of miles to meet without driving. 

     In addition to webinars, we are increasing the use of recorded video for communication.  Connections from Felix will be in both written and video format; allowing our Conference Minister’s communication to be more personal.  We are currently investigating equipment costs for the development of a small onsite studio that will increase the quality of the records we provide.

      We will continue to look for new and better ways to communicate, connect and inform.  Our communication goals are to be a resource site, to provide opportunities for connection and utilize the latest technologies to enhance the Conference’s ability to provide training, information, and connection.

I look forward to seeing you all in La Jolla!

Keith Clark, Director of Finance, Administration & Communication

Other Reports:

Report of the Conference Minister

Report of the Board Chair

Repoort of the Associate Conference Minister for Border & Latino Ministries

Report of the Director of Finance, Administration & Communication

Report of the Associate for Church Development & Renewal

Report of the Youth & Young Adults Ministries Coordinator

Report of the Financial Development Team

Report of the Pilgrim Pines Camp Executive Director

Report of the President of the Pacific School of Religion

Report of the Coordinator of Parish Ministries

Report of Peppermint Ridge

Report of Retirement Housing Foundation

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