News for Treasurers from the Canon for Mission Resources
Treasurer's Newsletter, Vol. 3
Fellow treasurers,

Here are some topics I hope will be helpful to you in your ministry. Please don't hesitate to reach out to me with questions or suggestions for topics. FYI, I've included rectors/priests in charge in the distribution as this info might be useful to them, too!

Donations/Pledge payments to your congregation must be postmarked by 12/31/17 in order to be considered tax deductible for the calendar year 2017

Any individual or unincorporated vendor receiving compensation of $600 or more during 2017 will need to receive a Form 1099-MISC. This does not apply to reimbursements. For more on the filing of this form and Form 1096 click HERE.

Incorporated vendors who receive $600 or more during the year should provide you with Form W-9 Request for Taxpayer Identification Number and Certification which can be found HERE.

I recommend that you do not list any value for your church building on your balance sheet. I know that some congregations list the insurance replacement value. But this is totally misleading. If anything, the more informative value is the market value, which is very hard to determine. Your assets are really limited to your cash on hand and the value of your investments. Listing the replacement or assessed value of your building, which is frequently in the millions of dollars, on your balance sheet will give parishioners the false impression that the parish has more assets than it actually has.

The Diocese produces audited financial statements which comply with GAAP standards. Mission congregations are owned by the Diocese. We list the value of those properties at a conservative guesstimate of the market value only.

It seems the hardest job to fill on the vestry is that of the treasurer. I suggest that a more sensible approach to the treasurer's work is to share the responsibility with an assistant. Frequently that assistant will be in the position to become the treasurer when the job is open. The possibility of having an assistant can make the job more appealing. The job takes experience which comes with time, and an assistant will be better prepared to step into the role of treasurer than someone starting fresh. In my experience the assistant treasurer does not need to be part of vestry meetings but can share some of the workload and can get the training and experience necessary to make a smooth transition when the time come. At Annual Meeting time at the start of the new year I hope that leadership in your parish will seek someone to serve in this important role.
Wishing you blessings and joy this Advent and Christmas season,

Steven P. Abdow
Canon for Mission Resources
The Episcopal Diocese of Western Massachusetts | 413-737-4786 |