Parish Council Minutes

April 28, 2009


Attendees: Reverend Dennis Bailey, Chris Parker, Linda Ladd, Chuck Cotting, Barbara Langill, Perry Hayden, Jeff Law, Phil Johnson, Jim Marshall, MaryAnn Parker, and Kim Morrissey. The meeting opened at 7:07 p.m. with a meditation by Chuck Cotting.

Minutes from the previous meeting on March 25, 2009 were approved.

Pastor’s Report: Reverend Bailey reported on the following:

Nominating Committee: Chris Parker stated that the assistant treasurer’s position will not be filled this year.

Treasurer: Dwight sent a report detailing the 2008-2009 budget including the 9-month actual budget and end-of-year projection, along with the 2009-2010 projected budget. The council was asked to refer to the spreadsheet for details.

Chris commented that the current fiscal budget with an estimated at $33,000 deficit does not reflect $2000 remaining in the music budget. Some further savings may be realized from Tower Notes changes. Perry added that $100 will remain in the library fund, and approximately $1800 may remain unspent from the Education Ministries’ budget.

Chris asked all subcommittees to review the proposed budget for 2009-2010. Chris suggested that all line items need to be reviewed in order to identify budget savings. The subcommittee will review the increase made to the non-recurring expense and will allot additional money to music line items. It was suggested that when discussing the budget, we explain that funds to certain projects cannot be committed at this time, but that items will not be “cut” from the budget.

Financial Secretary: Jim Marshall reported that 92 pledges have been received (slightly greater that 50%) promising $147,500, up $14,500 from last year. To meet the proposed budget for next year, $241,500 in pledges is needed. Jim stated many members have not yet responded to the pledge drive; last year 152 pledges were received compared to this year’s 92. Jim will provide the stewardship ministry the names of members who have not responded so that the committee can make phone calls. This will allow the budget subcommittee to meet the week of May 18 to consider the budget with more accurate pledge information.

Christian Education Report: Barbara commented on several upcoming events for children and the youth groups.

Barbara stated that 24 youth and adults are now planning to attend the mission trip to New Orleans. Several events for the youth group mission trip are planned including flamingo flocking currently taking place, a Boston Red Sox raffle for two tickets to June 19 Boston Red Sox vs. Atlanta Braves game, and a recycling day on May 9.

In addition, the youth group will hold or assist with other events. Mothers’ Day flowers will be available May 10, an end-of-year party is being planned for all youth groups to Richardson’s for ice cream and mini golf, and the high school youth group will head to Maine June 25-27 for white water rafting in Maine.

Outreach Ministries: Jeff Law reported that $2,000 per month is being donated to Our Church’s Wider Missions. Bread and Roses has $1,800 in funding, which is 6 months worth of meals. Last year’s golf tournament donations have been allocated with $500 being reserved for a meal at My Brother’s Table, and $826 to Bread and Roses. The next golf tournament will take place on September 18.

Membership Ministries: Chuck reported on two fun events being planned.

Trivia Night will take place on Friday, May 29 at 6:30 p.m. Dinner will be served, followed by a trivia contest. Tickets are $15 per person. Contact Susan Spear, Dotty Whittier, or Chuck for reservations.

A dinner and a show are planned for Saturday, June 13 at 4 p.m. Reservations are being taken to see “Dear Miss Garland” at the Stoneham Theatre. Dinner after the show is open for those wishing to continue the fun either at Melissa’s Main Street Bistro or perhaps another eatery.

Education Ministries: Perry updated the council on Tower Day and community news.

Perry reported positive feedback regarding Reverend Bailey from members in the community who say he works hard to take care of parishioners and is always showing up when he is needed.

Perry and Barbara Arsnow will attend a lecture on alternative energy sources including solar panels.

Enrollment for Tower Day is going well. No decision regarding salaries for Tower Day staff will be made until enrollment is finalized.

New mulch has been spread in the playground area.

Tower Day would like to have some bulletin board space for notices. They are asking if the large artwork by the chapel door can be removed for this purpose.

Diaconate: Linda reported that a baptism is scheduled on Sunday, May 10, and a date is still being determined for a favorite hymns Sunday. The diaconate is looking into a junior deacons program to involve recently confirmed youth members in assisting with Holy Communion. In addition, the committee is interested in finding a safe place for parents with infants to enjoy worship. Ideally the location would include a television to enjoy the service and a folding infant bed.

Stewardship Ministries: MaryAnn stated the committee will make phone calls to members who have not yet made pledges.

Property Team/Finance Ministries: Phil updated the council on ongoing projects.

T-Mobile transmitter installation is delayed until mid-fall due to additional approvals needed on the local and state levels. This will delay the $1,500 monthly revenue expected until the system is installed and operational, possibly to January 1.

The HVAC needs to be replaced. National Grid came for an energy walk-through and suggested a new HVAC system would provide 20-25% energy savings. A completely new system will cost $35,000-40,000, but the bank and National Grid will not provide financing. An alternative to replacing the entire system at this time is to replace the individual units over time focusing first on the unit that is no longer repairable that heats the sanctuary and narthex. National Grid suggests replacing the ageing oil burners which controls the chapel and Tower Day School with gas units. Phil states he is hoping to get a cost for this into the new budget, and will continue to pursue other ways to save energy.

Refinancing the mortgage is not possible at this time. Phil found that in some cases refinancing may actually increase our costs.

The air conditioning on the second floor is broken, so a window air conditioner unit was installed in one office upstairs. Phil is looking into whether to replace the condenser on the roof or purchase additional single units.

Saturday, May 9 is Spring Clean-Up Day at the church. Volunteers are needed to paint the fence, clean up flower beds and the lawn, and install engraved bricks.

This year, the lawn will be fertilized by a vendor, which is what we have done for some time. We will look to cut back on that in 2010 to save some expense in the budget.

An oven was purchased and will be delivered the week of May 11. It was funded with 80% from memorial funds, and 20% from donations.

The finance ministry is interested in adding a flexible spending account (FSA) for all employees.

Open enrollment for medical insurance for all full time employees will be held mid-May to mid-June.

Next Meeting: The next meeting of Parish Council is scheduled for 7:00 p.m. on Wednesday, May 27, 2009 in the Pastor’s outer office. Mediation will be offered by Dwight Decker.

Respectfully submitted,
Kim Morrissey, Recording Clerk