UNITY OF SOUTH SOUND BOARD OF TRUSTEES MEETING
Minutes for February 4, 2021
Opening Prayer – The monthly meeting of the Unity of South Sound (USS) Board started at 6:30 PM (online via Zoom) with an opening prayer by Rev. Jeffrey.
Board of Trustee (BOT) members, Barbara Bauml, Rev. Jeffrey Fowler, Lisa Hagen, Michele Millsap, Ruth Rogers, and David Sandall-Hill, were in attendance.
Check In – Board members checked in with one another.
Counting Tithes Sign-Ups/Check Signing – The singing and check signing schedule was finalized during the meeting; Barbara will share the February coverage plans with Heidi after the meeting.
Secretary Report – Barbara shared that the board approved the January 2021 Minutes online prior to the meeting.
Tithe Report – The Tithe Committee recommendation to the board for the January Tithe of $5515 was approved with much gratitude. The board celebrated the abundance, approved, and blessed the Tithe.
Treasurer Report – Lisa presented the finalized 2020 budget and favorable financials. She reviewed the initial 2020 trends via the January budget. Lisa reviewed actuals expenditures with the projected budget. Our net operating income and Balance Sheet are healthy. Our savings account is the same. No withdrawals have been made from Edward Jones and the balance has increased slightly. The board joined Lisa in celebrating our prosperity. On a side note, another Edward Jones request for Lisa to sign came through, but she thinks Linda is off the account now. Finally, the time has come to submit the PPP grant paperwork to apply for loan forgiveness. Thank you, God! Thank you, Lisa!
Minister Report – Rev. Jeffrey shared that January was a slower month and that pastoral care remains high. He enjoys the work, has done some hospital visits, and end-of-life care recently. He asked the board to hold the neighborhood and its folks in prayers of love and protection; he is concerned about USS, the Spire neighborhood, and people given some vandalism, Covid-19 blues, and people being on edge.
Social Media Report – Jeffrey shared that Jenny was concerned about lower open rates and less engagement last month. She has some new ideas and he’s encouraged her to keep trying new things and let her know that January is typically a slower month in the church year. On the upside, we have 81 new and engaged users on Facebook (likes, comments, etc.) Viewership is up. Google searches are about the same. Jenny plans to post some 3-minute video clips from Sunday Services or music on Facebook. Other advertisements are in the works. The shift to Tik Tok is still underway.
Lisa asked about how USS can respond to borderline-disrespectful posts during our Sunday services. The authority of board members and Jenny’s role in monitoring inappropriate online comments was discussed. David shared that on one occasion he erased a post that was rude. The Board agrees that troll-like behavior isn’t welcome. The board will consider an actual policy and/or an online etiquette for future use. David will take the lead and Lisa will help draft a few bullet points for responding to questionable or troll-like behavior. Jeffrey will connect David with Jenny and will review the written policy on who can post what on our websites.
$43,000 Gift Allocation – Rev. Jeffrey invited board consideration of using these funds which were donated to USS. The donation has been deposited in our checking account. The broad categories discussed and suggested focused on Security, Audio Visual improvements, and savings for future use. Options considered included exterior lighting, a security camera system, motion detectors, exterior music speakers and a camera connecting the front door with the office. Jeffrey here late at night. Lighting is a good deterrent for vandalism and loitering. Half of what we received can be put in Edward Jones. Lisa will get some clarity about the speed of withdrawing funds from Edward Jones. Lisa will ask Josh to survey the grounds with her to weigh in on lighting options and investigate lighting costs. Jeffrey will ask Amy to share her equipment list for AV improvements. David suggested using some “soft” stage lighting from underneath to improve the quality of our Sunday services. TMP might have some available resources that we could use. Signage was discussed (No illegal activity will be tolerated.) The Historical Registry status of the Spire may have bearing. Jeff and Jon may be consulted.
Rough numbers were agreed upon by consensus. to shift some funds to Edward Jones for investment. $13K for AV needs, $3K for security and cameras.
MOTION: Michele moved to set aside $3K for security, David seconded. Lisa moved to amend the motion to allocate funds as follows: $25K to investments; $10K to Savings; $3K for camera, lighting and security; and $5K for AV needs and stage lighting. It was agreed that these numbers are rough and that, hopefully, savings can be realized. At Jeffrey’s request, the board further amended the motion to ask for participation from Jeff and Jon on lighting costs and available equipment. The motion passed unanimously as amended.
Masks – Michele updated that the mask options, costs, and options for shipping at a cost of $3. Michele likes Google Forms and paper order form will be are available. Heidi can take credit card orders by telephone. Mask options are Namaste, BLM, Seahawks, the NW/Fir tree and there are several different fabrics available. The incentive to purchase additional masks with lower shipping was discussed. The board discussed pricing incentives and decided to keep the shipping price as is and promote the mask sales without regard for the federal mask initiative. These masks have adjustable ear straps. Michele will send the order form to Heidi who will share with Jenny for the e-Blast.
Honoring Stella and Ron Black – Rev. Jeffrey facilitated a brain storming session for ways to express our appreciation for the gift made by Stella and Ron. The board considered several options during the meeting and agreed on a “Bowl of Light” theme. Barbara will research and share the specifics via email with the board so that we can make a decision, order the gift, and get it to them on or before March 7, 2021.
Pledge Drive – Rev. Jeffrey shared the plans for the sharing the annual Pledge Drive during the four Sundays in the month of March (3-7, 3-14, 3-21, and 3-28). Forms and Google Slides will be available. Congregants will be able to mail or email in Pledge forms. Visuals to mark our progress were deemed desirable. Lisa envisioned a virtual room and wants to give the idea further thought. Jeffrey has individuals in mind for Prosperity Sharing videos.
Easter – Rev. Jeffrey shared his initial ideas about Easter online and invited feedback and brainstorming. Inviting congregant participation was suggested with the possibility of someone reading their names during the service ceremony. Flowers could be placed during the service, or their picture of a flower placed on a virtual screen. Themes of Dan’s Cross filled with flowers in some way, inviting participation, and mitigating isolation were favored. Jeffrey thanked everyone for the ideas and will use them to develop the service further.
Landscaping – Lisa shared that the initial year of grounds maintenance was funded by a one-time auction fund. Jeffrey had asked about extending the contract. The annual price for 10 months to our church is a bargain. Jeffrey received a note from Victoria asking about laying down mulch for $600. There’s a safety feature to this. Lisa supports this and will approach Jeff and Jon.
MOTION: Lisa moved to amend the earlier motion regarding the allocation of funds as follows: Instead of $5000 for AV needs, allocate $3000 for AV needs and $2000 for Landscaping. Jeffery asked to amend the $1800 with an additional $600 for mulch. Lisa agreed to the amendment with an ask to Jeff and Jon to contribute to the mulch.
Chaplain Prayer Gathering – Ruth added only
New PPP Grant – Rev. Jeffrey mentioned that Heidi has applied for the new PPP grant, David shared that the two Payment Protection Programs are independent of each other. Also, we should h
Annual Meeting Discussion – Rev. Jeffrey asked about a final review of the Annual Meeting and the board opted to review the agenda. Final changes, decisions, and improvements were made and the board looks forward to our virtual meeting with confidence that the meeting will proceed successfully.
Closing Prayer – Rev. Jeffrey closed the meeting with a prayer of gratitude.
Next Month’s Board Meeting
March 4th – Next Board Meeting
Respectfully submitted by Barbara Bauml, Secretary
March 4, 2021