December 2017 Newsletter
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in 2018

Membership renewal begins this month!

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A true leader has the confidence to stand alone, the courage to make tough decisions, and the compassion to listen to the needs of others. He does not set out to be a leader, but becomes one by the equality of his actions and the integrity of his intent.

-Douglas MacArthur

From the President
The Christmas Season is once again upon us. And while we celebrate the birth of our Savior and the renewal that comes from rebirth in Christ, this is also a great time for Ministries to assess their internal practices and gear up for another year. With that in mind, this month's newsletter includes several articles on practical issues that come up during this time of the year.
Also, as we close out the year it looks like we will have a tax reform bill in place by the time 2018 rolls around. What that will mean exactly for our ministries (and you and me personally) is yet to be seen, but here is an excellent article that summarizes what is known at this point if you would like to learn more (read article).

Given what I have read so far it is likely some very significant changes are in store. So you'll want to make it a point to join us in January for one of the four tax update seminars we have planned where you will learn more about the latest changes and how they will impact your ministry.
Lastly, it is membership renewal time! To renew your membership or join as a new member simply click on the link in the left-hand column - Join CMA in 2018 - to sign-up.
May each of you have a joyous and blessed Christmas.

Yours in His Service,

Steve Boersma
Benevolence Assistance...
helpful hints on doing it right
The holiday season usually brings with it a significant uptick in the number of people coming forward with requests for assistance of one type or another. Most churches and ministries dedicated to serving those in need will likely have a formal policy and set of procedures in place for administering this within their organizations.  But whether or not you have such a program in place you will want to take a few minutes to review this timeless article by Frank Sommerville on the subject. And for those of you without a written policy of any kind we have attached at the back of the article a sample policy and forms you are free to adapt to your specific needs. (read article)
Receipting Charitable Contributions
Most charitable organizations described in section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code are eligible to receive tax-deductible contributions in accordance with section 170 of the same code.  However, many of these same organizations have not kept current with the requirements in place for properly receiving and receipting such gifts in order to help ensure the gift can be legally claimed by the donor. (read more)
Church & Donor
Management Software (ChMS)
© 2017 by Nick B. Nicholaou, all rights reserved
Ministry Business Services, Inc. President
Reprinted from The Church Network's inSIGHT Magazine

Looking for the latest information on church and ministry related software to handle your operational and financial accounting needs. Want to be able to compare options to see which one best suits your organization?
Attached is a copy of the definitive article on this topic. Reprinted here by permission of the author. (read more)
 Employee/Volunteer Expense Reimbursements
An organization can reimburse employees or volunteers for business expenses paid by them personally under either an "accountable" or a "non-accountable" reimbursement plan. By law, employees are only permitted to deduct their unreimbursed business expenses and business expenses reimbursed under a "non-accountable" church reimbursement plan as itemized deductions on Schedule A (of Form 1040) - to the extent that such expenses exceed 2% of adjusted gross income and the expenses were not eligible to be reimbursed by their employer. ( read more )
Employment Corner
Wage and Hour Opinion Letters

Earlier this year the U.S. Department of Labor's Wage and Hour Division (WHD) announced that it is reinstating its practice of issuing Opinion Letters to help employers and employees understand their responsibilities under federal wage and hour law.

According to the WHD, as part of the administration of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA), interested parties may seek and WHD officials may provide official written explanations of what these laws require in response to their specific inquiry. (read more)