MPUUC Board of Trustees
(Last revised May 12, 2011)
Mission: To oversee and manage the general operations of the congregation within the letter and spirit of the congregation’s mission and by-laws.
MPUUC Board Policies
The Board has authority to make management decisions not specifically assigned to the congregation or delegated to a committee. Exceptions to policies will be considered on an individual basis by the Board.
1.0 Board Operations
The Board President and President-Elect shall meet with the minister each month to determine the following month’s Board meeting agenda and discuss other items which have come to their attention between Board meetings. Other agenda items must be cleared with the Board President.
Proposals which involve New Activities, Projects, or Procedures for the church must be presented using the Proposal Form established by the Board. They will ordinarily not be voted upon when first presented to the Board, as there is need for additional time to study and evaluate the proposal. In unusual circumstances when the interests of the church are involved, the Board may approve the proposal when first presented.
Telephone polls and email polls of Board members are not normally used as a means of taking action on an issue since discussion among members is not possible and inaccurate interpretations may result. Where immediate action is necessary in the best interests of the Congregation, action may be taken by the President based on an email vote using the same quorum rules specified in the By-Laws. If any Board member objects to the use of an email vote in a specific instance, then no action can be taken until the next monthly Board meeting or an emergency session. Actions taken based on an email vote shall be confirmed at the next Board meeting and included in the minutes. [August 14, 2008]
A copy of the board meeting minutes will be furnished by the secretary to board members, to staff members, to the chair of each standing committee, and to heads of other interest groups if requested.
2.0 Board Policy Review
Policies established by the Board will be reviewed and updated every two years.
3.0 Relationship with Committees
Each committee the Board creates will establish its own mission statement based on the charter statement provided by the board. This mission statement should be reviewed annually for inclusion in the congregation’s annual report. The committee must provide the job descriptions for committee members and committee chair or co-chairs. Committee meetings are open to members and non-members. Committee chair or co-chairs are selected according to the by-laws or other established policies. The committee meeting time/place is to be published in the monthly newsletter.
Chairpersons of board-created committees are only expected to commit to one-year terms when asked to serve. Chairpersons may serve consecutive terms if desired, but if an individual does not wish to continue as committee chair, it is the responsibility of the Board to find a replacement, not the outgoing chair. New chairpersons should be selected by the start of the fiscal year, July 1. [May 13, 2003]
Committee Liaisons: A Board member will be appointed as committee liaison to each standing committee and other committees/interest groups as needed. It is the Board member’s responsibility to contact the committee chairs at least monthly prior to the Board meeting. It is the committee chair’s responsibility to furnish copies of their minutes to their committee liaison.
4.0 Sunday Services
No selling of any kind will be allowed during church services. No non-church-related selling will be permitted before or after services without prior board approval.
The preferred method of Sunday Announcements is by inclusion in the written announcements. There will be one designated announcer for all oral announcements. All announcements should be written out. During services, there will be no passing around of either sign-up sheets or collection containers of any type other than the offertory baskets. [April 4, 1995]
Literature on the Welcome Table, or provided in other ways to the Congregation, shall be MPUUC approved – by the Board, a MPUUC Minister, Committee Chair, or other MPUUC entity – or, by a MPUUC member and consistent with our UU Principles. Non-MPUUC material must be identified as such and is limited to no more than one quarter of table space. The Board may appoint one Board member to approve (or not) non-MPUUC literature. Appeals can be made to the full Board. [May 2006]
Brochures and other publications, including electronic material, must be consistent with MPUUC principles and approved by the Board, a MPUUC Minister, the RE Director, Committee Chair, or a chartered MPUUC entity. The Board is the final arbiter of such decisions. [May 2006]
The Treasurer will order gift subscriptions to UU World for all non-members who pledge $100 or more to Mission Peak. In addition, the Membership Committee or Minister may, from time to time, and at their discretion, order gift subscriptions, through the Treasurer, to UU World for non-members on behalf of Mission Peak.
6.0 Keys and Lockup:
The Sunday Service Coordinator will manage keys to the First United Methodist Church campus, issue and retrieve them as necessary on the basis of the need for access, keep a list of those who have keys, and ensure that rooms on Sunday are opened and closed as necessary. All Board members will receive a set of keys for Cole Hall and the office. A Board member leaving the Board will be required to return their set of keys. [September 2008]
7.0 DRE Reporting Responsibility
The Director of Religious Education (DRE) will report to the senior minister as paid staff. A board-designated subcommittee may be assigned to supervise the DRE. The DRE will provide a quarterly report to the board. [September 2009]
8.0 Safety Policy for Children and Youth
Our safety policy was updated in April 2015.
The Treasurer and Finance Committee are delegated responsibility for monthly oversight of the congregation’s finances (both revenues and expenses.) The Treasurer will present a financial report to the Board on a quarterly basis, and notify the Board of any significant problems no later than the next Board meeting. [June 15, 2006]
Canvass pledges and contributions are made to the general fund and may not be restricted.
Non-canvass pledges and contributions may be designated as going into existing board-created funds. Any other restricted contributions will only be accepted with specific board approval.
Solicitation of donations for special projects must be approved by the board.
To count Sunday morning offerings, two members – usually the Board member serving that Sunday plus the Assistant Treasurer, Treasurer or Treasurer-Elect – will collect the offering baskets, lock the cash and checks immediately in a lock box, then after the service open the box and count the cash. A written record will be made of the count, initialled by both individuals, and filed in the Treasurer’s file on site. The Assistant Treasurer or his/her designate shall itemize checks and cash and deposit both in the congregation’s bank account. Other offerings will be handled in a similar manner. [November 2007]
When a special collection is taken, the assistant treasurer should count the special collection, documenting cash and check totals in the usual fashion, and give the collection to the Treasurer, the minister, or the Board President. The minister or President will then give the collection to the Treasurer.
Non-cash donations must be approved by the board.
Donations to the building fund can be used for capital expenditures related to the purchase or long-term lease (at least 3 years) of a facility.
The president, president-elect, treasurer, treasurer-elect, and secretary are authorized by the board to sign checks. One authorized signature is required to sign a check under $1000.00, and two authorized signatures are required to sign a check above $1000.00. [August 11, 2005]
Toward the end of the fiscal year, all pledgers will be encouraged to pay off their pledges. At any time during the year, adjustments to outstanding pledge amounts can be made at the request of the pledger (no questions asked), or upon joint recommendation from the Treasurer and Canvass Chair (if approved by the Board.) [November 9, 2000, March 10, 2005]
MPUUC will sell all donations of negotiable securities as soon as they are received. [August 29, 2000]
9.1 Proposed Donation Handling Procedure for “Share the Plate” Sundays
In order to properly handle the funds collected on Share the Plate Sundays, and to ensure proper accounting and distribution of these funds, the following guideline shall be followed:
- Groups selected to be the recipient of Share the Plate donations will be informed before they arrive at Mission Peak, that the donation from the congregation will come in the form of a collection of individual checks made out to the receiving group, and whatever loose cash is placed into the offering baskets. No check will be made out from Mission Peak to the organization.
- Before the offering is collected during Sunday Service, the congregation will be informed that all cash donations made that morning will be given, in full, to the receiving organization. Furthermore, the congregation will be informed that any checks placed in the offering basket must be made out to either Mission Peak, OR the receiving organization. The entire amount of the check will go to whichever entity is listed on the “To” line. If an individual wishes to give money to both Mission Peak and the receiving organization, they must use two separate checks.
- After the offering is complete, the individual representing the receiving organization will be invited back to the church office to witness the money being counted and separated into funds for the receiving organization and funds for Mission Peak. A record of cash and checks collected for the receiving organization will be made and retained by Mission Peak, including photocopies of all checks made out to the receiving organization.
- Once accounting is complete, the board officer or designee involved in the counting will present the representative of the receiving organization with the funds collected, and request a receipt from the representative (blank receipt to be supplied by Mission Peak, if necessary). This may or may not be done in front of the congregation.
- As a follow-up, the board member or their designee will report back to both the congregation and to the receiving organization (not the representative present on Sunday morning) the amount of the total donation collected and given to the receiving organization. [8/20/2009]
9.2 Policy on Charitable Donations/Solicitations
It is MPUUC’s stated policy that to give of our resources to those in need is an important part of our calling as a Unitarian Universalist community. We also understand, however, that for our financial contributions to be as effective as possible, and to reassure our members and friends that their contributions are going to a reputable organization, all requests for money during or immediately following an MPUUC function must be handled in one of the following ways:
- A request for our once-monthly shared collection to go to a specific charity should be made to the minister at least one month before the service wherein the collection will take place.
- A request to the Minister for a special or specific need should be made in writing to the Minister.*
In cases where other persons or organizations attempt to raise money for themselves without having followed the proper procedures, the Minister (or, in his/her absence, an MPUUC Officer or Trustee) will intercede. Intercession will adhere to the following practices:
- The interceding authority will find a second MPUUC Officer, Trustee, or member to accompany him/her before approaching the soliciting party.
- The soliciting party will be asked to immediately cease their fundraising activities until such time as they have been granted permission by MPUUC.
- The two interceding authorities will stay with the soliciting party until the party has left the premises.
- The interceding authorities should not engage the soliciting party in debate, as this will only prolong the incident. It is recommended that they simply repeat the MPUUC policy firmly and politely.
- Physical contact of any kind with the soliciting party is prohibited.
- The interceding authorities will call Fremont police only as a last resort or if necessary to ensure the safety and security of MPUUC members, guests, and property.
* We also recognize that many with needs may not have knowledge of, or access to, the proper technology to use this process. We pledge to help them as we are able, and also to provide those with immediate needs with a food card or other appropriate pre-paid gift card as we are able. [5/12/2011]
10.0 Lay Ministers Approval
The Board has the authority to approve lay ministers to perform rites of passage. Selection criteria for designating members to perform rites–candidate must have worship, leadership, or ministerial education or experience and active membership in the congregation. Requests for appointment as a lay minister must include a listing of qualifications and must be presented in writing to the Board. [September 5, 1996].
11.0 Sponsored Organizations
Organizations sponsored by MPUUC must be approved by the Board and confirmed by the congregation at the next congregation meeting. Once approved, they must furnish the Board copies of their meeting minutes and budget. They must also present an annual report to the Board, including a financial report for the year and a description of their accomplishments.
12.0 Delegates to PCD Annual Assembly, UUA General Assembly, and Leadership School
Delegates and leadership school attendees must be approved by the board. The board will notify members of the congregation of the opportunity to become a delegate to the PCD Annual Assembly or General Assembly or to attend the PCD’s leadership school. The board may formulate an application to be used for the selection. The current Board President will be given the first opportunity to serve as delegate to the PCD Annual Assembly and to General Assembly. Priority for attendance at leadership school will be given first to continuing board members and individuals nominated for the coming year’s board of trustees, second to the coming year’s committee chairs and co-chairs and third to other members in leadership positions.
13.0 Sponsorship of Starr King Students
The Board has the authority to approve the sponsorship of ministerial candidates. Congregational sponsorship is for approximately two years, and is designed “to ensure familiarity on the part of new ministers with UU congregational life, and [to] encourage congregations to take a responsible role in the recruitment, preparation and assessment of our future ministers.” (Quote taken from a memorandum from UUA’s Ministerial Education Director) Sponsorship includes the following provisos:
- That sponsorship include formal review (at least annually) of the sponsoree’s performance and suitability for the ministry; and
- That standards for the sponsoree’s role, along with a protocol for consideration of future sponsorship requests, be spelled out as soon as it is practical to do so. [January 3, 1995]
An application form must be completed in accordance with the separate MPUUC “Ministerial Candidate Sponsorship Policy.”
Board Created Committees and Individual Positions
Assist minister in the planning, creation and performance of regular Sunday worship services and take primary responsibility for Lay lead Sunday services. Provide an Associate to directly participate in the worship service as a Lay leader.
Associated with Worship:
- Music Coordinator. Provide pianist for hymns and special music as needed. Coordinate music with minister and Worship Committee.
- Sunday Setup Coordinator. Recruit and remind aesthetics, setup, coffee, snacks, greeters, and takedown team for Sunday morning services.
- Choir. Schedule practices and performances as part of the Sunday services, in coordination with other music.
Be responsible for attracting and integrating new members into MPUUC. Track membership, including directory database, official member count for UUA/PCD, names and addresses for the Canvass, names and addresses for Newsletter mailing.
Do publicity for special events and general publicity for MPUUC.
Life Span Learning
Be responsible for the Religious Education programs of MPUUC, including Sunday morning children’s education and other adult education programs. Coordinate activities with and supervise the Director of RE.
Adult RE Committee
To provide on-going adult education classes. [committee formed March 2002]
Provide pastoral care as recommended by the minister. Assist minister as needed in care and visitation of members.
Associated with Pastoral Associates: Caring Circle
Social Concerns Associates
Provides education, dialogue and action on social justice and other social issues. [committee formed March 2002]
Promote and coordinate environmental action programs within the congregation. [committee formed April 2006]
Mental Health Committee
Identify and work on issues in support of people with mental disorders and their families in our congregation and the larger society. [committee formed April 2006]
Provide congregation education and community outreach in regard to lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender issues and needs. [committee formed April 2006]
Provide financial management, promote effective accounting processes, and assist the treasurer in fulfilling financial responsibilities. [committee formed Jan 2005]
Produce the newsletter, be the final copy editor, make decisions as to material included in the newsletter.
Produce MPUUC website, be responsible for web site content and maintenance.
To organize photos and other documentary information on the Congregation’s history. [established February 2002]
Associated Groups and Task Forces
- Women’s Full Moon Circle
- Children’s Advocacy Forum
- Welcoming Congregation
- Facilities improvements task force [established January 2002]
- Communications Task Force [established March 2002 through Program Council]
To review the communications within the congregation including printed information, e-mails, and verbal announcements. Review the MPUUC website as a resource to the congregation.
- Treasurers Committee [established January 2005]
Relationship with Committees
Chairpersons of board-created committees are only expected to commit to one-year terms when asked to serve. Chairpersons may serve consecutive terms if desired, but it the individual does not continue as committee chair, it is the responsibility of the Board to find a replacement, not the outgoing chair. New chairpersons should be selected by the start of the fiscal year, July 1. [5/13/2003]