We heard an update from the Covid/Emergence team and discussed designating mask-optional spaces starting in December. The committee is also thinking about the choir singing with or without masks. Congregational feedback will be solicited at the congregational meeting on 20 November.
We also received brief updates from the Pastoral search committee and the Asset Enhancement Task Force.
The newly formed Church Health Task Force (CHTF) has started interviews with Pastor Steve, Ed Coleman and Joyce Jackson & Virginia Felton (personnel committee co-chairs). This first step is designed to understand aspects of church health from a leadership point of view, and to start to identify possible ways to measure or evaluate the health of our church. The CHTF also asked Council to approve a scope of work (see below) to make clear the extent of the task forces work and handoff(s) for the information.
Council approved the following three items: The proposed scope for the Church Health Task Force (CHTF), adding UCUCC values to our AIR form template, and Supporting Ordination Pending Call (OPC) status for Rachel Haxtema.
We spent the majority of the meeting discussing the budget. Council unanimously voted to recommend that the congregation approve the 2023 Budget as presented by the budget committee acknowledging the anticipated deficit or gap of $173,180 as presented. This includes Council approval of a one-time increased draw of 10% (instead of 5%) from the L&J endowment to replace $15,000 decrease in operations budget support and a one-time increased draw from 5% to 7% from the Music Endowment. Council also recognized that the CE Adult ministry (Seabeck) is taking a cut of $1600. Note that our treasurer and 50% of the investment committee supports using L&J endowment at this increased level, the rational being that the value of having this money out working in the community is far greater than the dollars that the money might accrue by sitting in the investment account.
Council also unanimously recommended that we cover the deficit gap in this budget by using up to $35,000 from the Council Designated General Endowment ($500,000 current value) and up to $140,000 from the Permanent Endowment (current value almost $2,000,000) because we feel that the future of this church depends upon continuing to support our staff, programs and services.