2014 Annual Report – National Secretary-Treasurer

Shari Guinta
National Secretary-Treasurer
2014 Annual Report

Only two reports were received from provincial secretaries, although a reminder was sent to all presidents two weeks prior to the due date. One provincial council did not submit a treasurer’s report.

A communiqué was sent regarding minutes and reporting for secretaries as I had some concerns regarding minute taking and the process of approval. Secretaries were encouraged to prepare a minutes template, and if possible bring a laptop to meetings and simply “fill in the blanks” during the meetings. Minutes recorded on USB sticks made for easy transfer to the next secretary. There were some councils doing this.

It appeared from the two reports and from some e-mail questions that there were still concerns about minute taking and the responsibilities of the secretary. Some councils had a recording secretary, corresponding secretary and treasurer, and some combined the positions. The secretary was usually a third signing officer.

Most councils e-mailed meeting minutes and provided copies at meetings rather than read minutes at meetings. Minutes were kept in binders and archived on church property. Minutes of executive and council meetings were prepared by the secretary, as were the agendas. It was reported that secretaries still handled correspondence for the council, and often the president. Many made use of e-mail for corresponding with members and councils.

Secretaries were also involved in maintaining membership lists with contact and e-mail information, compiling and distributing copies of annual reports, recording attendance, assisting executive members in typing reports, and accessing provincial and national websites for information and resources. They used bulletins, Facebook, e-mail and posters, and made phone calls to disseminate information.

Challenges faced included keeping up with technology, finding time for League work and keeping contact information updated. Other issues that might be addressed at a future time include holding workshops for secretaries and on using computers, and an orientation for all executive members to make them aware of their duties and responsibilities.

At the national level, I worked closely with national office, particularly the communications assistant and the executive director and relied on them for information and support. Minutes of executive meetings were transcribed by staff and reviewed by a committee of the national secretary and two provincial presidents. There was little done in the way of correspondence as this mostly comes from or through national office.

It was gratifying to see the treasurers’ reports come in, and ten provinces reported. Two councils reported contributing to MaterCare International which is no longer a temporary voluntary fund and I have not reported those contributions here.

National Voluntary Funds:
Coady International Institute
Canadian Catholic Organization for Development and Peace
Catholic Missions in Canada
Velma’s Dream/CNEWA
Total:                                                                                              $ 185,944.90

Standing Committees:
Spiritual Development
Christian Family Life
Community Life
Education & Health
Total:                                                                                              1,551,458.59

Other donations including parish:                                        718,472.06

Grand Total:                                                                            $ 2,455,875.55

Military Ordinariate Provincial Councils also reported a total of $18,095.28 contributed to its provincial voluntary fund.

At year end, the national council had a positive difference between revenues and expenditures of $314,764 as compared to a budget of $88,600. Income from all sources totalled $1,351,021 and expenditures totalled $1,197,893. Additional income was realized from investment income of $161,636.

Per capita income totalled $1,135,241 which was down from the previous year’s income of $1,176,692; the executive had budgeted $1,170,600. Investment income was very important to the health of the organization. Investments were healthy, with interest rates ranging from 1.95% to 9.5% and maturities stretching out to 2026. Investment income for 2014 was $161,636 as compared to $168,340 for 2013.

National voluntary funds collections, paid out annually in August, included contributions to date from July 2014. The $57,883 collected in 2014 would form part of the August 2015 distribution and would include collections for the first six months of 2015.

Insurance was cause for question from councils at all levels as the national executive agreed to fund general liability insurance coverage for all members performing duties on behalf of their parish council.

It was helpful to visit the national office in the fall of 2014 to meet and interact with staff and review the budget, inspect accounts payable/ receivable and look through files.

The Catholic Women’s League of Canada Financial Statements, December 31, 2014, are available to all members upon request.