Carryover funds in other account

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xmdcpa
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Carryover funds in other account

Postby xmdcpa » Tue Jan 12, 2016 10:05 am

Our ward had a fundraiser last year for YM/YW camps in which a significant amount of money was raised by auctioning baked goods and some other donated items (a week in Hawaii home was one of them). There is a balance remaining in the account after all 2015 Camp Expenditures have been paid. Because of the number of persons purchasing items, it would be quite impractical to refund a percentage to each person. I was under the understanding that it could be maintained into 2016 as long as it is used for its original purpose (Camp).

The stake financial clerk indicated we had to either refund it (an administrative nightmare) or write a check and deposit those funds into the budget. I don't believe that the donation software will even allow you to do this, and it would be in contravention to my understanding of the budget program of the church, even if it could be done.

Please comment

russellhltn
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Re: Carryover funds in other account

Postby russellhltn » Tue Jan 12, 2016 10:29 am

xmdcpa wrote:I was under the understanding that it could be maintained into 2016 as long as it is used for its original purpose (Camp).

That would be a reasonable interpretation of the guidelines. It would be up to how the local leaders interpret "specific event".


xmdcpa wrote:The stake financial clerk indicated we had to either refund it (an administrative nightmare) or write a check and deposit those funds into the budget.

Your options for surplus that leaders rule can't be carried over are:
  • Refund
  • Use it for camp equipment
  • Send it to CHQ

Transferring to budget would be a no-no and should cause you to fail an audit.

References:
Handbook 2: 13.2.8 Funding for Activities

Help Center: The "Other" Account (quick steps)

Help Center: The "Other" Account (read)
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eblood66
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Re: Carryover funds in other account

Postby eblood66 » Tue Jan 12, 2016 10:33 am

xmdcpa wrote:The stake financial clerk indicated we had to either refund it (an administrative nightmare) or write a check and deposit those funds into the budget.

Transferring the funds to budget is not appropriate. See the second item under "What Priesthood Leaders Should Know" in the "Other" Category document in the Help Center.

Your stake clerk presumably wants to get all Other accounts zeroed out which is sometimes a policy that some stakes make. The policy as described in the previously mentioned document is that funds should be raised for a specific purpose and used for that purpose or refunded. Some stakes interpret that to mean that accounts should be zeroed out each year. I'd say there is some wisdom in trying to do that.

However, when a fundraiser raises more than needed it does cause a problem. As you say, making refunds is difficult if not impossible. Transferring to budget is against policy.

If you can identify a legitimate need for equipment to be used for camp, you may be able to some or all of the excess to purchase equipment and still spend the funds for the intended purpose. Otherwise you have to either retain the funds to use for camp the next year (and make sure not to raise too much the next year so the problem doesn't reoccur) or to send the funds to CHQ as described in one of the comments in the above document.

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johnshaw
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Re: Carryover funds in other account

Postby johnshaw » Tue Jan 12, 2016 1:50 pm

My practice was to create a new other account, so Girls Camp 2015 became Girls Camp 2016, then transfer the money
Making sure that Fund Raisers know that if all the money spent didn't go to this year's camp it would go to next years
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drains
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Re: Carryover funds in other account

Postby drains » Mon Jan 18, 2016 10:54 am

I appreciate the help offered in this section (I am a fairly new stake clerk). I have read in a few places that unidentified excess funds on the "other " category should be sent to CHQ (including a comment on the HelpCenter), but I cannot find anything printed by the Church about that. Is that something that was communicated via a letter, is it online, or does one need to contact them directly to get that answer? I am not disputing the policy; it makes sense to me. Our stake was given some seemingly different instructions a few years ago and I want to have a reference to go by when training, etc. Thanks for the help.

eblood66
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Re: Carryover funds in other account

Postby eblood66 » Mon Jan 18, 2016 10:58 am

drains wrote:I appreciate the help offered in this section (I am a fairly new stake clerk). I have read in a few places that unidentified excess funds on the "other " category should be sent to CHQ (including a comment on the HelpCenter), but I cannot find anything printed by the Church about that. Is that something that was communicated via a letter, is it online, or does one need to contact them directly to get that answer? I am not disputing the policy; it makes sense to me. Our stake was given some seemingly different instructions a few years ago and I want to have a reference to go by when training, etc. Thanks for the help.

The comments in the Help Center are moderated so that comment is semi-official. But I'd call Local Unit Support to make sure and to get the correct current address.

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johnshaw
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Re: Carryover funds in other account

Postby johnshaw » Mon Jan 18, 2016 12:42 pm

As long as you have good assurance that the accounts have been managed well and used correctly, Don't negatively impact a ward by sending money to SLC that you might discover later by looking through transactions, etc.. that the money is really left over.

One large example with fundraisers is that sometimes a reimbursement check might be written from Budget instead of coming from a 'fundraiser' - What about a deposit for a camp? I found that deposits are often done well ahead of the fundraiser where the funds came from, so a check was written out of budget that could later be reclassified as coming from the fundraiser (meaning it is an appropriate expense to re-classify).

As a general rule, I measure about 7-10 times and only cut a check once - sometimes in a hurry to solve a problem, or fix something a leader might have told us to do, etc... just make sure it's the right thing before doing it. We have limited funds, extremely limited in many cases.

As an example - I found, as a new stake clerk, around $14,000 difference as I looked back over several years. Some might remember the Phone Expense, and we had a TON of Scouting Registration fees mis-written out of Budget. As a new clerk I was reviewing some work from my finance clerk, and saw it done wrong once, then assumed it happened before, like I said, $14K later I had correct each of them.
“A long habit of not thinking a thing wrong, gives it a superficial appearance of being right, and raises at first a formidable outcry in defense of custom.”

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gregwanderson
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Re: Carryover funds in other account

Postby gregwanderson » Mon Jan 18, 2016 3:13 pm

To me, the requirement to send excess funds to Church Headquarters is more suited to situations where the money has been sitting idle for so long that there's no longer a reliable record of why it was collected in the first place. That doesn't apply in this case. Meanwhile, I can't imagine someone who paid into a fundraiser for youth camps being upset that it wasn't all used and the remainder was being applied to the next year's camps. So I can't imagine why stake leaders would be upset by this either. I like johnshaw's idea of simply transferring the excess into a new category of, say, "Girls Camp 2016" and then letting all the relevant ward leaders know about that carryover balance so that they can plan accordingly. This seems reasonable to me unless, of course, you're running a $1,000 surplus each year for 10 years and you keep doing fundraisers the same way as always until you have an unmanageable balance and no reliable record of how-and-why it was collected.

russellhltn
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Re: Carryover funds in other account

Postby russellhltn » Mon Jan 18, 2016 3:44 pm

For the OP, I'd like to know how stake leaders think it's OK to move excess to budget, but not carry it over to next year's camp. Seems like funny logic to me. The fundraising section of the Handbook is pretty specific that fundraising is only for certain things - something that would be violated if it was moved to budget. But I see nothing that says everything has to be spent in a given year with no carryover.
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