Rectory & Rhinelander Bldg

Vestry Meeting

January 16, 2012

Present:  Rob Ingraham, Virginia Borland, Hal Barth, Susan Valdes-Dapena, Carol Haley, Suzanne Julig, Marlin Mattson, Clerk James Daubs, Rector The Rev. Michael Phillips, Warden Jean Geater, David Jacobs.
Absent:  Alden Prouty, Warden Steve Knight, Treasurer John Ewing.
Guests: Jay Akasie, Jim Synk.

  • Susan Valdes-Dapena opened the meeting with a prayer of St. Anthony of Padua.

Guest Presentations:
Jay Akasie said he had several reasons for speaking to the Vestry:  (1) he wanted to make sure there was no confusion about his intentions—he wanted his earlier e-mail to the Vestry concerning the Rhinelander Volunteer Program to be discussed within the Vestry; (2) he wanted to be certain that responses he had received before have been personal, not official responses from the Vestry; and (3) he wanted to reiterate his objections to the RVP’s knitting program for death-row prisoners, considering it a violation of our Baptismal Covenant.  Michael Phillips responded that (a) the discussion of Jay’s letter is indeed on the agenda, and (b) it is the Vestry’s custom to discuss such communications and then respond to the writer corporately.  (NOTE:  It was later decided that Jean Geater would reply to Jay on behalf of the Vestry.)
Jim Synk reported on the Pledge Drive: 

  • There are 24 new pledgers
  • There are 33 LYBUNTS (“Last Year But Unfortunately Not This”)
  • We’re currently at 107 pledges, and of the 33 LYBUNTS, Jim predicts that 20 will eventually respond.  He predicts pledges of $350K, which means that (a) for the first time since 2007 the pledge amount is up, and (b) for the first time since 2005 the number of pledgers is up. 
  • He asks that thank-you notes to pledgers go out by this coming Thursday so they might be received in time for the Annual Meeting. 

Culture of Thank-You (Susan Valdes-Dapena):
Susan posed a couple of questions:  how many people should get thank-you notes each month?  Should the same number go out each month?
After discussion, it was decided that the Vestry should have a “lookout person” watching for parishioners who need to be thanked.  A motion was made to appoint such a person, and it passed UNANIMOUSLY.
Spiritual Reflection:  Happy Birthday to Carol Haley—song and cupcakes!
December Minutes were approved UNANIMOUSLY. 
Financials (Michael Phillips/John Ewing’s documents):
Treasurer’s Report to the Vestry highlights: CHT ran a deficit of $197K last year, and John anticipates a deficit of $164K this year; he proposes transferring equal payments of $25K from Fiduciary Trust to the church checking account several times a year, for a total of $150K.
Budgets vs. Actuals highlights: 

  • Pledging was $32K below projection, while plate offering was $5K over projection.
  • We have 3 vacant apartments on campus.
  • Thrift Shop revenues exceeded expectations.
  • We’re fortunate that utilities did not much further exceed budgets (actuals are 118% of budget).
  • Outstanding questions remain about the last 3 lines of the document.

A motion to accept Budget vs. Actuals 2011—with outstanding questions pending—was passed UNANIMOUSLY. 
2012 Draft Budget highlights:

  • Music budget reflects a program in transition: for instance, we’ll have paid choir members through Easter, at which time we’ll reassess.
  • We need tenants for 3 vacant apartments.
  • We await news about the Diocesan Assessment.
  • Since the parish staff have not received a cost of living increase in five years, the Budget Committee decided to give them a 3% compensation increase in 2012.

A motion to accept the 2012 Draft Budget was raised, but Marlin Mattson proposed that we continue the discussion of learning to live within our means.  Jean Geater proposed an amendment, i.e., that the Vestry regularly address cost-cutting and revenue generation. The AMENDED motion was passed UNANIMOUSLY. 

Committee Reports:
Property:  Diane wants the sandwich board for the Thrift Shop revised to say “open 11-3:30”; Susan Valdes-Dapena will redo the sign.  Donations to Thrift Shop:  should we have a bin to which only sextons have the key?  Michael will investigate. 
HTNC:  Liz Poole and Joanne Kim are investigating new funding sources.
Adult Christian Education:  David Jacobs started a discussion about the ACE website, observing that there’s currently no content on the page.  Dave asked:  should ACE programming appear in Weekly Notices?  It was decided that Dave will deactivate the ACE blog or create a link from it to Weekly Activities. 
Communications (David Jacobs):  There are new graphics on the CHT website.  Dave suggests starting a group to investigate possible uses of social media for CHT’s purposes. Suzanne Julig noted that there’ll soon be a “Film and TV” tab on CHT’s website:  she’s working on it with Erlinda Brent.
Carpenter’s Kids (Susan Valdes-Dapena): Susan has sent C’s K a $250 end-of-year donation. We are an extra year—or $2800—ahead in funds.  There will be a Lenten pledge drive managed by Susan and Yvonne O’Neal.
Children/Youth:  Jeanne Blazina, R.C. Laird, Dinushka Da Silva, and Greg Brown continue to run the Sunday School program—they are phoning parents, etc. 
Hospitality (Hal Barth):  Hal will remind Inez and Jackie of the Annual Meeting and of the Feast of the Presentation reception. 
Fundraisers (Virginia Borland):  Virginia needs volunteers for the 1/28 Bill Minifie performance.

Rector’s Report

  • The Rector reported on the Music Director Search Committee.
  • Rhinelander Volunteer Update:  the interns will have a panel presentation at the 1/29 ACE meeting.
  • The Rector encouraged people to attend the Stephen Hamilton concert and the Bill Minafie cabaret performance. 
  • Nominating Committee (Susan Valdes-Dapena):  We have 5 nominees for 5 Vestry/Warden seats. 
  • The Rector recognized departing Vestry members.

Dismissal:  Michael closed the meeting with a prayer.

Respectfully submitted,
James Daubs, Clerk