Overrun onto check from multiple "Other" subcategories

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seth.wagenman
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Overrun onto check from multiple "Other" subcategories

Postby seth.wagenman » Wed Sep 15, 2010 6:45 pm

If you write a check from more than about 10 "Other" subcategories (for instance, if multiple donors donated to a fundraiser) then the list of categories from which the check was drawn just keeps running down the box in which the categories are listed and eventually onto the check itself and off the bottom. If there was a way this could be summarized or shortened it would allow more accurate record-keeping when accepting donations for fundraisers by creating sub-subcategories for each donor/family to enable quick viewing of how much they have donated over time (for example, for Scout camp, which can require fundraising over quite a long period).

crislapi
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Postby crislapi » Wed Sep 15, 2010 9:21 pm

brethvoice wrote:If you write a check from more than about 10 "Other" subcategories (for instance, if multiple donors donated to a fundraiser)


I have never noticed this problem because I don't use that many categories. It sounds like you create sub-categories by donor instead of activity. However, the instructions for Other indicate the subcategory should be descriptive of the activity (it's an audit question, even). Doing it this way might significantly reduce the number of sub-categories you are drawing from.

From the online training for using other (slide 16):
Clerks should understand the following about the “Other” category:
Funds in the “Other” category must be designated for a future purpose and then used for the stated purpose. The “Other” category is divided into subcategories, and the title of the subcategory should indicate the intended purpose. Subcategories in “Other” should be limited to those approved by the bishopric or stake presidency.
If members designate money for the “Other” category and the purpose is not stated or does not fit within one of the approved subcategories, a bishopric member should contact the member and either return the money or have the member change the donation to another category.

crislapi
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Postby crislapi » Wed Sep 15, 2010 9:28 pm

The training "Understanding and Using the “Other” Category (U.S. and Canada only)" found at auditing.lds.org gives this example (slide 13):

For example, you may create a subcategory named “Other—Church Magazines” to use during a Church magazine campaign. When you receive money for a magazine subscription:

  • Deposit the money into the Other—Church Magazines subcategory.
  • And prepare a single check for the total of all subscriptions, recording the expense to the Other—Church Magazines subcategory.

It is still possible to view the unique donor contributions and amounts if you run an Income and Expense report using the "details by sub-category".

seth.wagenman
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Subcategories vs. Sub-subcategories

Postby seth.wagenman » Thu Sep 16, 2010 3:00 pm

I do indeed have subcategories by activity or purpose, then beneath those I also have sub-subcategories by donor to keep track of the monies attributable to each Scout camp attendeed and enable quick viewing of how much money they have yet to raise.

crislapi
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Postby crislapi » Thu Sep 16, 2010 3:18 pm

Wow. I can see how that could lead to some large lists of donors. I guess it's up to you to decide how to organize, but I'm pretty sure that many sub sub-categories was never anticipated in the development of MLS. That approach truly does allow for a quick-glance status report.

I can think of no other way to do what you want in MLS, which would explain why your are doing it the way you are.

You may want to consider adding your discovery to this wiki page.

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aebrown
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Postby aebrown » Thu Sep 16, 2010 3:26 pm

brethvoice wrote:I do indeed have subcategories by activity or purpose, then beneath those I also have sub-subcategories by donor to keep track of the monies attributable to each Scout camp attendeed and enable quick viewing of how much money they have yet to raise.


If I were creating sub-subcategories like this, I don't think I would ever write a check from all those sub-subcategories. It seems like it would be simpler (and avoid the effects of the problem you mentioned in the first post) to always write the checks from the subcategory, and use transfers from the sub-subcategory to the subcategory.

So, for example, you have Other:Scout Camp:Scout A and Other:Scout Camp:Scout B, etc. for all 15 scouts. You would gradually collect payments and fundraising attributable to Scout A into Other:Scout Camp:Scout A. He might have income of $20, $50, and $30 to total $100. The same for the other boys. Then as the time for writing checks arrives, you write a $1100 check from Other:Scout Camp for the registration, another $300 check from Other:Scout Camp for food, and a $100 check from that same category for gas. At some point, when each of the boys has amassed $100, you do one transfer from Other:Scout Camp:Scout A to Other:Scout Camp, and the same for the other 14 scouts.

That way each check is written simply from Other:Scout Camp. Each scout's sub-subcategory will show various credits totalling $100, and one debit for $100, leaving a balance of 0; the Other:Scout Camp category will show one credit for each scout's share, and then debits for each check that is written.

Just a suggestion, but it might help simplify your accounting and avoid the MLS limitation on check printing.
Questions that can benefit the larger community should be asked in a public forum, not a private message.

seth.wagenman
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Postby seth.wagenman » Thu Sep 16, 2010 3:31 pm

Crislapi:

Which section of the wiki page do you think I should add it to...the "Financial Records" suggestion section, or the general "bug reporting" section? The reason I'm unsure is because perhaps I'm the only person who will ever have the misfortune to experience this (and next year we probably won't have three Scout camps either), so listing it as a bug may not be truly accurate...?

seth.wagenman
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Postby seth.wagenman » Thu Sep 16, 2010 3:38 pm

Alan_Brown:

How do you do this "transfer" function you speak of...I have never heard of it and I certainly don't think it is in the training. I had the following experience...I wrote the check from about 30+ sub-subcategories (and in some cases sub-sub-subcategories) of the "Other" category and it ran so far down the page that it went onto the check portion at the bottom and even off the page from there. The stake presidency was whom I was sending it to, so since it is a policy of mine to only write checks from categories with money in them I went and found all the donations that had aggregated into each of the 30 sub-subcategories and sub-sub-subcategories, and changed those donations such that they were into a category named "Other:2 June 2010 Camp XXX Check". Then I voided the first check and wrote another one for the same amount from my new "Other" subcategory.

Is that what you mean by a "transfer"? If not, would there have been some easier way to do this without callling HQ and going over 30+ categories (that's not what I did but I am guessing it is what you are calling a "transfer"...please correct me if I am mistaken and advise on proper transfer procedures so I can train the fellow who will be replacing me in the next few months).

crislapi
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Postby crislapi » Thu Sep 16, 2010 3:39 pm

Looks like you can't post it there yourself - you need an administrator to do that. Alan_Brown can initiate that process if he feels it is merited. He might see what other members of the forum think first, though, as we are to discuss it here first.

Once the idea has been discussed on the forum, an administrator will move the suggestion to this page -- regular users can no longer make changes to this page directly


I do like his suggestion for how to work around the bug for now. It's maybe a little more work on your part (depending on the number of scouts you have) but less of a headache than what you are currently dealing with.

crislapi
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Postby crislapi » Thu Sep 16, 2010 3:44 pm

brethvoice wrote:Alan_Brown:

How do you do this "transfer" function you speak of....

Is that what you mean by a "transfer"? If not, would there have been some easier way to do this without callling HQ and going over 30+ categories (that's not what I did but I am guessing it is what you are calling a "transfer"...please correct me if I am mistaken and advise on proper transfer procedures so I can train the fellow who will be replacing me in the next few months).


MLS allows you to transfer funds between subcategories in the same major category (Budget, Missionary, Other) without having to cut checks. There is a feature on the Finance Screen (bottom right panel) or in the menu, Finances > Enter Transfer (ctrl + F).

In the left of the screen that opens, select the source(s) and amount(s) and on the right the destination(s) and total(s). The total on the left screen should match the total on the right. The money will be moved from the source(s) on the left to the destination(s) on the right.

More info can be found on this wiki page.


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