Balancing the triennial budget

From Episcopal News Service

The Episcopal Church’s Executive Council heard October 22 that the church’s 2009 budget, if council members approve it, will have a $2.5 million deficit.

However, Treasurer Kurt Barnes told council members that the entire 2007-2009 triennial budget will be balanced, as required by the Episcopal Church’s Constitution and Canons. There were surpluses of $1.2 million in 2007 and $2 million in 2008, Barnes said.

The article by Mary Frances Schjonberg also provides at least some information on legal expenditures, an issue on which Church Center has been unnecessarily (and unhelpfully) secretive.

She writes:

Included in the proposed 2009 budget is $600,000 for legal support to dioceses and expenses for Title IV disciplinary actions. Any costs above that amount will have to be taken from the church’s short-term reserves, Barnes said, noting that because of previous commitments made for $5.4 million of the $6.5 million in reserve, there is $1.1 million available that could be used for those expenses. Those previous commitments include a recent dedication of $2.4 million for the effort to relocate the Archives of the Episcopal Church and a 10-year-old promise to reserve $3 million for future pension enhancements for lay employees at church center.

In 2008, the council budgeted $450,000 for legal expenses but $1.97 million was spent. The difference was taken from short-term reserves as the council had directed when it passed the budget.

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