The General Board approved a revised budget for 2016, with an overall reduction of $252,000 below the budget that was previously approved at the November Conference Council meeting. The General Board considered that this was a necessary step after the large deficit was reported for 2015.
The chairpersons of all boards met with the Board of Trustees to plan for the revised budget, and Conference staff worked diligently with the boards in finding ways to reduce spending with as little impact as possible on programming. Consideration was given to all feasible ways to reduce the budget, including the possibility of reducing staff salaries, although in the final draft of the budget, salaries were maintained.
All five boards found the exercise very challenging, as the budget was already very lean. There were reductions in the budgets of all boards. Following are some of the impacts of this reduced budget:
As you can see, Conference staff and boards will need to operate very efficiently this year. However, the core ministries of the Conference will continue, and we will persevere in the implementation of our Vision-based strategic plan.
The true nature of an organization becomes evident in the way that they respond during times of crisis. In this task of budget reductions, the boards, staff and churches have all responded in a very positive and constructive manner. It is our hope that this time of trial will help to crystalize our vision, and that the net result will be continued upward growth of the ministries that we do together as Conference.
- Tim Dyck, for the General Board