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MC Canada discovers budget gap for fiscal year 2002


Jan 14, 2002
Winnipeg, Man.- A recently discovered $430,000 gap in MC Canada's budget will result in the delay of some plans for 2002 fiscal year and expense restraints in all areas. The fiscal year begins on Feb 1 and ends on Jan 31.

Support Services executive secretary Pam Peters-Pries discovered the gap in a recent budget review of bi-national to national church transition progress. A subsequent investigation suggests that blurred responsibility for certain accounting procedures caused the error in the budget preparation process last year. A heavy transformation workload on staff preparing the budget in 2001 added to the confusion.

"What is important for people to know is that we understand how the error was made, and can now take measures to help prevent similar errors in the future," said Peters-Pries.

Among the measures being taken to alleviate the shortfall are delaying some new staff appointments, reducing some new staff appointments to less than full-time, and close monitoring (and reduction where possible) of expenses. The shortfall represents an increase of 7.8% over the total 2002 budget of $5,494,675 approved at last-year's assembly in Abbotsford.

Dan Nighswander, general secretary added, "We intentionally under-budgeted revenue by ten per cent for fiscal year 2002, allowing for a grace time of loyalty transfer from the bi-national church to MC Canada. Early indications now suggest that most of this ten per cent will be coming in, further alleviating the shortfall. There are also some income sources that were not included in the earlier budget projections."

Although not all of the shortfall can be made up through planned measures, Nighswander emphasized it is too early to predict the final outcome. Much depends on the giving/expense ratio for the fiscal year 2002.

He said, "We are inheriting considerable responsibility for former bi-national programs and ministries - activities that used to be mostly run from offices and staff in the USA. It has been a considerable challenge to get a full grasp of what our new responsibilities entail."

"We are unwavering in our commitment to the missional vision for the church. I am continually buoyed by stories of extraordinary giving when our actions are in tune with God's desires. We believe we will overcome this new challenge. We remain on the cusp of an exciting future for the church. I believe our revised budget is both prudent and feasible."