REPORT OF THE FINANCIAL MANAGEMENT AND DEVELOPMENT COMMITTEE
This report covers the period from the 2001 General Synod to April 2004.
1. FUNCTION AND ORGANIZATION
The functions and responsibilities of the Financial Management and Development Committee are set out in Canon VI and the strategic plan. These include:
- to manage and control funds and investments
- to direct and oversee administrative and financial concerns
- to study the financial needs, problems and opportunities, as well as the local circumstances and resources of the Church
- to develop resources to assist dioceses in financial management, financial development, gift planning, administration, legal, personnel and property issues
- to coordinate and propose budgets for all components of the national church, in consultation with the appropriate committees and councils
- to present financial needs to dioceses
- to oversee the Anglican Appeal
- to facilitate networks of diocesan finance officers and financial development volunteers and staff
- to maintain and coordinate accounting systems
- to appoint bankers
- to coordinate work with other groups through the Mission Coordination Group.
During the period under review, the work of the committee has been carried out both by the committee and a number of sub-committees and task force groups appointed by it. These include:
- Investment Committee to oversee the consolidated investment fund in cooperation with the investment managers
- Grants Sub Committee responsible for receiving and considering applications for grants under a number of trusts
- Financial Development Sub Committee responsible for developing and overseeing financing initiatives including planned giving and Anglican Appeal.
In addition the FMD Committee has representation on the Audit Committee of General Synod.
2. THE WORK OF THE COMMITTEE
During the period the FMD Committee met six times. All meetings were held in Toronto. Sub-committees met regularly as required.
At each meeting the committee has a full agenda receiving current financial information and receiving reports from various sub-committees as well as The Anglican Book Centre and The Council of the North.
From a financial management perspective, this triennium has been extremely challenging. At the start of the period, the Committee had to address the possibility of General Synod seeking bankruptcy protection and the implications of such an action. From that time to the reaching of an agreement with the government on residential school liability the Committee was actively involved, advising the Officers and others on the financial implications of the various options being considered.
The FMD Committee also recognized that regardless of the outcome of the financial negotiations, the Church overall would need to develop long term plans to finance the continuing work of the Church at all levels. To facilitate this, the Committee initiated a series of national consultations to discuss the future needs and financing of the Church. Three meetings were held in various parts of the country and attracted a broad range of participants. Based on the deliberations and findings of these conferences, FMDC developed an initial financial proposal for discussion across the Church. From these further discussions and building on the national consultations, the financial plan “Letting down the Nets” included in the Strategic Framework being submitted to General Synod was developed.
Other initiatives and actions undertaken by the Committee include;
- Continued monitoring of the agreement to sell 600 Jarvis Street and the move to Hayden Street.
- Approved the incorporation of the Anglican Journal.
- Approved the incorporation of a company to acquire the Anglican Book Centre if such became necessary. A not for profit corporation has been established but has not been activated.
- Evaluated a feasibility study to determine if the Church could undertake self-insurance. The Committee agreed that self-insurance would not be economically viable at this time but directed the treasurer to continue to monitor the situation and take any action possible to mitigate the costs of higher insurance premiums.
- Reviewed the current policy on sale of annuities and approved the re-establishment of self-insuring annuities where circumstances warrant it.
- The Committee recognizes the need for a workable policy on socially responsible investing. The current legislation governing the operation of the General Synod restricts this ability and accordingly FMDC has requested that Council of General Synod request the Chancellor to recommend a course of action to amend the incorporation of General Synod.
- Made recommendations and suggestions to the Planning and Agenda Committee for matters to be included in the Framework being presented to general Synod.
- Approved a process for hiring a new Treasurer in 2004.
As required by Canon VI, the audited Consolidated Financial Statements of The General Synod of the Anglican Church of Canada for the fiscal years 2001 and 2002 have been received and approved by the Council of General Synod. The audited statements for 2003 will be submitted to General Synod for approval.
Robert Dickson, Chair
James Cullen, C.A., Treasurer