Vestry minutes – 5/19/2015 meeting

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Vestry Minutes
May 19, 2015

Vestry Members: Mike Cotter, Nancy Flowers, Eddie Grim, Helen Hankins, Sue Kelly, Mary Merrill, Michael Mittelstaedt, Donna Olendorf, Dixie Stephen, John Strickler, Jeff Tibbits, Chuck Wolterink (Absentees in Italics)
Guests: Mark Stackable
Staff Present: Ann Hackett
Clergy: Daniel Richards, Katheryn King

Check-in, Scripture & Study: At Daniel’s urging we all shared our highs and lows over the last month. After check-in, discussion centered again on the book, Becoming a Blessed Church by N. Graham Standish.

Agenda: Donna proposed amending the agenda to deal with refinancing the church loan prior to approving budget. Her proposal was accepted. The minutes from the April meeting were approved with one clarification to the item regarding Jubilee House. Acceptance of the Evergreen Construction bid and the Four Seasons painting bid are contingent on approval of the grant application to the St. John’s Episcopal Foundation. With that addition the April minutes are approved.

In an attempt to keep meetings to two hours, Donna recommended that committee reports be routinely approved unless there are motions regarding specific items that need to be discussed and approved.

Reports/Old Business:
Treasurer Report:
Mark Stackable reported that the proposal from Traverse City State Bank is the preferred one for refinancing the church loan. The loan terms are more favorable (4.2% for the 1st five years with no pre-payment penalty), will save the church approximately $23,000 over the rest of this year, and will allow us to pass a balanced budget for 2015.

Motion by Eddie Grim, seconded by Mike Cotter to accept the proposed refinancing of our debt with Traverse City State Bank with the terms detailed in a letter dated May 5, 2015. Approved.

Motion by Michael Mittelstaedt, seconded by Sue Kelly, that Senior Warden Donna Olendorf and Clerk John Strickler be directed to sign the loan documents for refinancing the church building loan. Approved.

Motion by Donna Olendorf seconded by Eddie Grim to approve the 2015 budget as presented in the May 12, 2015, document submitted to the vestry. Approved.

The vestry agreed to ask the Finance Committee to have a conversation with FIM regarding the issue of socially responsible investments on behalf of the Hughes Foundation portfolio. In addition, the vestry is interested in projections for future performance based on the following three scenarios regarding income versus moderate growth: Continue the current goal of earning 5% income, 70% – 30% goal of income versus moderate growth, and 80% – 20% goal of income versus moderate growth.

Priest Report:
Daniel gave an oral report. He also reported that Dixie Stephen has submitted her resignation from the vestry but will continue to be of service to the church. Daniel asked that vestry members pray for guidance in replacing Dixie.

Daniel reported that emotional support dogs will no longer be allowed in Jubilee House. The ban does not impact service dogs. The new rule will go into place in June.

Daniel reported that the first Tapas talk went well and said he looks forward to future meetings.

Associate Rector Report:
There was no Associate Rector report.

Parish Administrator Report:
Ann Hackett’s report was submitted in writing.

Motion by Donna Olendorf, seconded by Jeff Tibbitts, to accept the parish administrator’s report as presented. Motion approved.

Senior Warden Report:
Donna presented the sr. warden report and it was supported by Jeff Tibbits. The vestry received the report.

Donna asked for volunteers to review the church bylaws. Donna and Nancy volunteered. Ward Kuhn will also be asked to serve on the ad hoc committee.

Junior Warden Report:
Jeff presented the jr. warden report and it was supported by Mike Mittelstaedt. The vestry received the report.

Motion by Eddie Grim seconded by Sue Kelly to accept the various construction gifts made for the renovation of the Jubilee House. Approved.

New Business: Chuck reported that a member of the congregation brought up a concern that more parishioners be encouraged to volunteer for church activities. Vestry members agreed that encouraging more volunteers will increase engagement of parishioners in the life of the church.

Follow-up & Follow-Through:

  • Mark Stackable will ask the Finance Committee to request information from FIM regarding socially responsible investing and income and growth scenarios.
  • Ann will provide receipts for in kind donations to firms making construction gifts for the Jubilee House renovations.
  • Daniel will present the finalized budget to the congregation in June. He will also provide the vestry with the diocesan statement on socially responsible investing.
  • Vestry members are asked to pray over a replacement for Dixie Stephen on the vestry. Sue Kelly will send a note to Dixie thanking her for her service on the vestry.

Process Evaluation: Nancy observed that the vestry moved through a lot of information but bogged down somewhat in discussion of managing investments.

Compline followed by dismissal at 9:05 p.m.

Respectfully Submitted:

John Strickler

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