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2023 Budget Outturn Report and Trustees’ Report

The PCC met in February to review the Trustees’ Report which included the Financial Statements for the year ended 31 December 2023.

Lionel opened the discussion on the 2023 Accounts by commenting on the minutes of the Finance Committee and the budget monitoring table. The latter was in the usual format as those which the PCC receive through the year. At the foot of this table adjustments between the annual accounts and the budget were included so that the PCC could see that the deficit compared to the budget was £18,242.

He then turned to the Financial Statements on pages 7 to 18 of the Trustees’ Report and how the information on pages 12 (Income) and 13 (expenditure) relate to the budget monitoring table just discussed.

Comments were made with regard to the 23% increase in the Planned Giving between 2022 and 2023 and that thanks needed to be recorded for those involved, both by increasing their giving and the organisation of the campaign. Comment was also made that the total number of those in Planned Giving had risen from 95 to 119, an increase of 25%.

A question regarding the rising level of income from lettings was made and Lionel responded that he had a few days earlier been looking at the level of utilisation and how various factors come into play which limit the letting capacity.

On the expenditure side of the accounts Lionel commented that the mild December meant a lower cost of heating the church by over £900 in that month. Additionally, significant improvements to the lighting reduced the electricity cost for the church. Finally, the benefit of the solar panels has reduced the electricity costs for the Centre.

Comment was made that despite providing a grant of £25,000 for the Bedford Winter Night Shelter the total funds of St Andrew’s had risen over the level a year earlier. Of course, this did include the unrealised gain of over £43,000 with the investments. However, a suggestion was made that the Finance Committee might well consider a longer-term financial plan, ie beyond the current 3-year time-line, with regard to the use of some of the unrestricted reserves.

The PCC was asked if there were any other queries, apart from amending titles in the list of staff, with regard to the Trustees’ report and the Financial Statements. They then received the minutes of the Finance Committee, and then voted to adopt the Trustees’ Report for the 2023 Accounts. This meant that they can now be signed off by Gill Lake in completion of her examination of the accounts.

Thanks were expressed by Lucy and the PCC to Lionel for his efforts with the accounts. Lionel responded that Gill Lake did keep him on the straight and narrow!

2024 Approved Budget

Lionel then made a few observations regarding the 2024 Budget. These included the fact Kelly and he were in the process of signing a new contract for the photocopier. He estimated that there would be significant savings with the new equipment. In addition, income from lettings might exceed the budget.

Lionel Mayoh, Honorary Secretary

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