Finance Committee Report
This is a report from the Finance Committee that held its scheduled meeting on Monday, 13 February 2023 at Stella Maris.
In attendance were Bev Nunan, Fr Peter Brannelly, John Legg, Lorraine Cush, Peter Donelan, Tim Hishon with apologies from Fr William Aupito Iuliano and Deacon Isaac Falzon.
The main items discussed included:
- After the opening prayer the parish accounts were examined. Thanks to the generosity of parishioners and visitors on holidays, December’s income was $88,855 less expenses of $66,320 leaving a surplus for the month of $22,535, compared to budget of $12,490. At the end of 2021, our outstanding loan was $1,906,518. At the end of 2022, our outstanding loan is $1,740,130 a reduction of $166,388.
- The committee members were advised that the budget for 2023 is in the process of being finalised. The Parish financial year ends in December and the books and records will be audited.
- Fr Brannelly led a discussion on the establishment of an Endowment Fund for the parish. Endowed Funds are permanent investment funds from which a distribution is paid annually to support the life and ministry of the parish. The funds capital is preserved but keeps generating annual interest to provide an income stream for the parish. Through a bequest, or if a parishioner donates money to the Parish Endowment Fund, it guarantees that their generosity will continue to support the parish year after year. Many parishes are already a part of an independent and professionally run endowment programme established by our Archdiocese. The committee supported the establishment of an Endowment Fund for our Parish.
- A list of maintenance items were tabled and acted upon, including: At St Catherine’s the painting of verandah and external wooden doors, repair of broken seats, electrical upgrade and need for a new mowing and garden contractor. At Stella Maris, approval was given for the next phase of the preventive maintenance work on the external vertical beams and timber posts. A report is being prepared into the external speakers which are being impacted by the corrosive salt air. St Mary’s Asbestos Management Plan will be updated and a quote is being prepared for the carpet in the church to be steamed cleaned. St Peter’s Asbestos Management Plan will also be updated, and their list of maintenance included the removal of outdoor seating, electrical upgrade and annual roof inspection.
- The committee decided to proceed with the non-structural renovations to the Parish Office at Stella Maris. The goal of the renovations is to open up the office and, importantly, to convert the current sacristy and chair storage room into a meeting room.
- After investigation it was agreed that the piano at St Catherine’s, which can no longer be tuned, needs to be replaced. Discussions will be held to ascertain what would be the most appropriate musical instrument to replace the piano.
- A proposal was tabled to increase the gathering area at Stella Maris by concreting the triangle shaped garden outside the sacristy. The parishioners who put forward the proposal are involved in the hospitality ministry and they identified the current confined gathering space and the advantages of extending the gathering area. The committee agreed to look at their proposal in more detail at the next meeting.
- Brisbane Catholic Education has approached the parish enquiring about the possibility of extending the upper car park at St Catherine’s. No decision was made. If the proposal were to proceed in effect this would be estranged parish land and would need independent valuations and the approval of the Archdiocesan Property & Planning as well as the College of Consultors.
- In the Workplace Health and Safety report there were no incidents reported or ongoing. There was no rectification work identified, since the last meeting the Finance Committee. The meeting closed with prayer. The next meeting of the Parish Finance Committee will be on Monday evening, 13 March.