Message from the Treasurer
New Policy on Named,
While the Society is
very happy to have new awards such as the recently available Skinner
Scholarship, the Executive Committee felt the need to provide
guidelines for how new funds might be established. One concern, of
course, is that some funds will be in competition for contributions
from prospective donors. Therefore, the Executive Committee approved
the following policy at its meeting in San Antonio in January. This
policy is also found on the SICB web site under Resources >
Establishing Named Funds
A new program must state clearly its intended purpose.
New programs will normally require a minimum of $25,000 to establish
an endowment whose earnings will be used to support the proposed
activities according to the formula specified below.
Normally, 4% of the trailing 5 year average of the value of the fund
will be available for expenditure on an annual basis for the
designated purpose of the fund. However, in no case will
expenditures be allowed to invade the principle of the fund.
Exceptions to these rules must be granted by the SICB Finance
Committee. For funds with less than a 5 year history, the SICB
Finance Committee will determine the amount available.
Mechanisms for the disbursement of the funds consistent with the
stated purpose of the program must be clearly established. If a
committee determines how funds are to be disbursed, e.g., determines
award recipient(s), what is the composition of the committee, how
will the committee be formed, and how often will membership on the
committee be changed? An example is the DCPB Bartholomew Award in
which the procedures are spelled out in the DCPB Bylaws, Article
Programs may be discontinued by the SICB Executive Committee
provided proper legal issues associated with the disbursement of
remaining funds are resolved.
The SICB Finance Committee will oversee the activities of the
program to insure adherence to the stated purpose of the program and
adherence to all financial procedures governing income, investment,
and disbursement of the associated fund.
Proposals for new programs must be submitted to the SICB Executive
Director, who will forward the proposal to the SICB Finance
Committee. The Finance Committee will review the proposal and it may
recommend modifications of the proposal to the individual, group of
individuals, division or organization making the proposal.
The SICB Finance Committee will make a recommendation to the SICB
Executive Committee for approval or disapproval of the proposal.
The SICB Executive Committee must approve the proposal.
Budget Belt Tightening Required
Society remains financially very solvent. However, the general
operating budget continues to generate a deficit every year. For
example, for fiscal year 2008 the anticipated overrun is about
$51,000 while fiscal 2009 is projected to be approximately $35,000 in
overages for these 2 years are occurring even though the Society
managed through Burk & Associates' negotiations, to have
between $30,000 and $50,000 in audio visual expenses waived by the
hotels/convention centers in San Antonio and Boston. These
'donations' at these venues were the result either of ongoing
construction or promotion of a new facility, both of which worked to
the Society's advantage.
is very unlikely that Sue Burk can keep up this run of excellent
negotiation for 2010 and beyond. That means that in addition to the
budget overruns of recent years, SICB can anticipate an additional
expense of perhaps $40-50,000 per year for A.V. at the annual
meeting. Obviously the Society cannot sustain cost overruns on the
order of $70-80,000 per year.
the budget recommendation for fiscal 2010 is developed this summer
and fall, the Finance Committee will be looking hard at ways to
balance the general operating expenses. Increasing some fees or
decreasing some subsidies and other expenses are areas that will be
targeted. Of course if the Society can grow its membership, that
would help offset expenses.
the very able guidance of Tom Daniel, University of Washington, the
long-dormant Development Committee will be rejuvenated in 2008 and
beyond. A concerted effort to attract corporate sponsors and other
donors to fund aspects of the Society's activities could greatly
improve the Society's annual balance sheet. If there are members
who would specifically like to assist Tom as members of the
Development Committee, please contact our Secretary, Lou Burnett, who
will coordinate any such interest.
roller-coaster ride on the stock market the past few months has not
been pleasant for anyone. However, SICB's financial manager very
astutely held nearly 45% of the Society's investment portfolio in
cash and cash equivalents beginning early last fall. The outcome is
that our overall invested assets have decreased only about 3% since
mid-December while the Dow, S&P and Nasdaq have alternately been
in free-fall and spectacular (albeit short-lived) recovery. Our
manager now is poised to capitalize on what will be some bargain
mutual funds when the market finally stabilizes. If only some of us
could have managed our personal 401(k) s as well...