• TopekaFirstUMC

A Letter from the Trustees

Did you ever wonder about the financial responsibilities of the Board of Trustees, and how they differ from the operating budget responsibilities of the Finance Committee?

The Board of Trustees is responsible for the management and protection of the physical and financial assets of the church. The financial assets managed by the Board are distinctly separate from the offering collections during the services and the operating budget, which are managed by the Financial Committee and the church staff.

The financial assets overseen by the Board consist of endowments and gifts received outside the offering. Many of these assets are endowments with restrictions on the spending of the principal and/or the earnings. Only a portion of the earnings on endowment funds is available for spending by the Board. This portion is determined by a formula that averages the earnings over the previous three years. This portion plus the unrestricted funds make up the available annual budget that the Board of Trustees oversees to pay for major maintenance items and capital improvement projects for the benefit of the church. The conservative use of these earnings over the last few years has allowed the Board to address several significant projects this year including the remodel of the second-floor restrooms, additional parking lot lighting, facia/trim boards repair, stair, and concrete curb repairs. None of these maintenances or improvements utilize gifts received through the offerings or included in the church operating budget.

You can think of the financial assets managed by the Board of Trustees and included in the Board’s budget as your personal savings, retirement or investment accounts. These are personal funds that you have set aside for special purposes and planned for spending at a later date. In the same way, the church’s operating budget can be compared to your personal funds which you have available to pay those recurring bills like utilities and groceries.

I would welcome any questions you may have concerning the funds that the Board of Trustees oversees and the differences between these funds and the operating budget.


Bill Naeger

Board of Trustees Chair

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