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LAST NATIONAL COUNCIL MEETING OF 2014

On Monday, December 15, the National Council conducted its final meeting of the calendar year. It was again held by WebEx with eight of the nine members online. As is the norm, the first item of business was to adopt the minutes of the previous meeting (September 14).

Anthony Wasilkoff gave a National Office update. He reported that the latest subscriber development letter had an 11 percent response rate and, as a result of the letter, donations were received from six first-time donors. He gave an update on the five Open Houses held in three provinces. Of special interest is that work is being done on the national website to include an option to receive online donations.

The Council was given a summary of a law seminar attended in November in Mississauga. Areas of special concern were pointed out. One pressing need is to create a policy so that the church is in compliance with the new Canada Anti-Spam legislation. Bill Dimovski noted that the presenters of the seminar stressed that it is important to have suitable policies in place and to be sure the policies are adhered to.

Edwin van Pelt related that our finances are sound with the income and expenditures closely on track with the budget.

Rainer Salomaa gave a Council of Elders update. He gave some background for the reasons for deciding to change the name of the Good News magazine to Beyond Today. He showed Council a tri-fold created by UCGia Treasurer on “Planned Giving” and suggested that Canada might wish to create something similar. The Ambassador Bible Center internationals filed a petition to allow students from outside the US to attend ABC. This is still pending.

The Director of Operations presented the draft of the 2015-2016 Operations Plan. After some questions and making some minor changes, the Council approved the plan. It will be presented to the National Conference in March for ratification.

The Treasurer presented the 2015-2016 Budget explaining the rationale for various categories. After discussion, the Council gave its approval to present this Budget to the National Conference for ratification in March.

Committee chairs gave a short report of what they were working on. The Finance Committee is looking at insurance and reimbursements. The Compensation Committee has been working with the National Office to review salary ranges. The Governance Committee has worked on an assessment form for the evaluation of the Director of Operations. The Compliance Task Force will be working on an Anti-Spam policy and a resolution to present to the National Conference on how to receive and process absentee ballots.

Anthony Wasilkoff presented a policy for Online Donations that states that automatic withdrawals for tithes and offerings will not be an option. Questions were fielded on how the online donation system would work and cost. E-cheques will not be used because that would require storing information until we had a “batch” to submit. This would increase our responsibility to protect information. After discussion and some changes, the policy was approved with the understanding that a further related policy would be needed.

The final item of business was to approve the March and June meeting dates. The March meeting will be on Monday evening, March 16. The June meeting will be a face-to-face meeting and will take place on June 11 and 12 at the National Office. On Saturday evening, June 13 and Sunday, June 14, there will be a Ministerial Conference.

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