Episcopal Diocese of Rochester
Joy in Christ, as a way of life

2014 First Draft Budget: Introduction

To: Wardens, Treasurers and Convention Delegates
From: Todd Rubiano
RE: First Draft 2014 Diocesan Budget:


Diocesan Mission Statement 

Grow and develop congregations spiritually, numerically and in missional leadership.

In the Church, a budget is a dynamic balance of the spiritual and financial.  Our Diocesan Mission statement provides a useful marker to help us align our resources towards this objective.  Is our budget aligned with our mission statement?  And, if the mission spans a number of years, we need budgets that are part of a longer term plan.  These are questions the leadership of the Diocese has been working on and we will be seeking your thoughts over the next three months as we plan for 2014.

These are the cornerstones of the 2014 First Draft Budget, along with some longer term perspective: 

  • INVESTMENT INCOME:  Trustees approved a total draw of $1.3 M. from our investments, including the distributions from the Cutler Trusts.  In, addition, we estimate $82,000 of interest income will be generated by our loan portfolio.  Our plan is to gradually reduce our draw from investments in order to get back closer to a 5% draw, using a trailing 5 year average.  You can see the impact of this plan over the next five years in EXHIBIT #1.
  • APPORTIONMENT INCOME:  In 2014 we will implement the resolution on Apportionment passed at our last Convention (EXHIBIT #2).  A key component of this resolution states: "As part of each year's budget process, Council may adjust the apportionment rates and/or the cap & floor, as most appropriate to further the mission statement of the Diocese."  This first draft budget utilizes the apportionment rates and "5% cap & floor" that were approved last November.  The Council is also considering the potential impact of reducing rates and how this decision aligns best with our mission statement.  We will also need to review projections of our apportionment over time, as the annual "cap & floor" limit the changes in any one year. 2014 Parish Apportionment (Proposed Draft Budget) - Table of All Parishes (revised August 7, 2013)
  • MISSION STATEMENT FOCUS:  The expense categories of "Congregational Development" , "Mission within and outside the Diocese", along with "Clergy & Lay Benefits", "Leadership Development" and "Communications" are the "program" investments we want to align with our goals.  While total spending will decrease 5% from 2010 to 2014 (EXHIBIT # 3), we've concentrated our resources on Congregational Development, maintained investments in Mission and increased investment in both Communication and Leadership Development (EXHIBITS 4-7 - revised June 17, 2013).
  • ADMINISTRATIVE EXPENSES: Since 2010, we've reduced annual spending on Governance, Staff and Office expenses by more than $250,000.  While there is always opportunity for improvement, we've already captured most of the efficiencies in our current structure (EXHIBITS 8-10 - revised June 19, 2013).  A cost/benefit study of the impact of moving to a different location is a potential next step.

An important step in the budget process is communicating this first draft to stakeholders early enough to gather feedback that can be incorporated into the final budget. The Council plans to vote on the 2014 Budget at the September 17th meeting.

Please review this preliminary draft of the 2014 Diocesan Budget, and provide your thoughts to your elected Council members and respective committees using the 

"Feedback Form". Please e-mail your completed forms to the appropriate Council member or Susan Woodhouse.

The risk of communicating a "first draft" is that budgets change and someone may feel that they lost something that they thought was already "in the budget". This is a work in progress. Things will change.  The only way to get meaningful feedback is to share a draft.  And, the only way to incorporate feedback is to make changes.  So, we must trust in each other to do just that.

Best Regards,

Diocesan Council Members

CC: Diocesan Council, Trustees, Standing Committee, C.O.M., HR Committee, Stewardship Committee and Public Policy