Finance Update

  • Paper has been obtained for the printer
  • Signature authority has been updated at the bank.  This will need further amendment after the next BOD meeting  2015-12-15.
  • A work party was made at Clausen on 2015-11-21, significant progress was made toward a current and comprehensive understanding of our current position.
  • Community Revenue Sharing Report is complete.
  • Project debit card has been canceled.
  • Internet banking account credentials have been updated.
  • Deposit of funds gathered at 11-21 work party has been made and logged.


Finance Committee Minutes — November 17, 2015

Convened:  6:35 pm

Present: Phil Rulon, Susan Osborne, Hal Osborne, Connie Hoffman, Mindy Gallagher, Syrilyn Tong

Old Business

Minutes from November 10, 2015 meeting were accepted

Borough property tax paid 11/16 using JTEL debit card. Confirmed by Phil Rulon

P.O. Box rent paid for 1 year by Phil Rulon using his personal debit card ($88 + late fees to total $109). He will submit request for reimbursement. He picked up form to renew the Post Office Box, and Susan Osborne will turn it in. Susan, Monique Musick, and Phil, as Treasurer, Vice-President, and President will be listed as receiving mail at the box; these 3 plus Jasmine Stokes, board member, will have keys. The key Susan got from Connie wouldn’t open the box, so she will talk with postmaster to resolve this concern.

Once box rental was paid, Phil was given a huge box of mail, which he sorted, special attention paid to outstanding bills and bank statements.

Signing authority – we still need minutes from annual meeting election of officers. Phil will talk with Monique about these so they can be taken to the bank. Phil, Susan, and Monique as officers will be signers on the account.

According to October 31 statements Phil found in the P.O. box, savings account has $58,026.62, and checking has $919.51. He has been going through records to balance out the systems, located old log books and is cross-checking them with bank statements. He began this process with records from 2008, segregating out costs specific to the Passive House at 488 Village Road. Recent bank statements are now organized into a binder chronologically. Susan offered to take on a similar task, starting with present statements and working backwards. This will also give her insight into current bill situations.

Debit card – Connie’s debit card will be turned in and kept in a locked safe until signing authority change is complete, then it will be cut up. Connie forgot to bring the card, but said she would bring it later.

Biennial Report status – Connie reports this has been done, and there is no need to file paperwork for new officers.

To-Do list on the laptop – Community Revenue Sharing Report needs to get done. Other due dates are not close. There used to be a system with the monthly payments scheduled, but with automatic payments this isn’t used anymore. Phil said Word Press has an events list that isn’t being used, and there is also some community software. He will give a 10 minute tutorial on the word processor features of the program.

New Business

Need to record committee meeting hours and other volunteer times in log book. The book was passed around and everyone updated their hours. Phil had put in a lot of time over the past week working on the mail situation and balancing the books. Connie has a spread sheet of volunteer hours. This could go into Quick Books as in-kind contributions. Phil will set up a system, if someone else will enter the data. Mindy and Syrilyn offered to do the data entry.

“Can of Money” described by Connie last week was from the LiBerry Music Festival., plus some memberships. We were able to find bank records of $877 deposited 10/23/15. In the future, memberships will be tracked separately like they were before. Ledgers will be re-established.

Connie wrote a check to reimburse Deirdre Helfferich who paid Chris Campbell for chainsaw work at 488 Village Road. Check dated 10/9 for $220 was cashed 10/19. Susan will create a receipt form because the note from Chris did not include the amount and payment method. Susan will establish an invoice system, have people sign a receipt, and note payments in a ledger. Phil said he also has invoices to present, as does Connie.

Phil gave Susan his receipts for fuel system repair, P.O. box rent, general office supplies, and postage stamps. Connie took some bookkeeping classes and bought office supplies. She will bring in her receipts later.

Phil needs to buy paper for the printer, and will present that receipt as well.

Concern was raised about a limit for a single signer on checks. The previous policy was changed 2 – 3 months ago to allow Treasurer to write a check for $6000 for Scott Allan’s dirt work at 488 Village Road. Concern was expressed that this is too high for only one signature, leaving us vulnerable to improper charges to the organization. There was discussion that James Rogan may recall when this policy change was enacted, and if the new board wants to change this it needs to be brought up at the next board meeting.

Hale and Associates is the insurance broker we are using, they were again selected in the spring and payment for the year was made in the last couple of months. Cost was $600 plus $300 for the gazebo because it was part of a park? There was some confusion about it being a park, but it was tabled until we look this over in the spring when we start re-evaluating renewing the insurance. Policy also includes officer’s insurance.

Statement of Completion needs to be done for the Community Revenue Sharing monies for FY 2015. Phil will complete this for last year with Deirdre’s input.   The plan is to renovate the white building to make it into the business office and rare books collection. This would allow the Clausen cabin to be open to the public without board members present. The CRS money is approximately $5000. Word has recently been received that the FY2016 CRS monies were being sent and should arrive soon.

Connie said the priorities had been (1) to complete the deck behind the Clausen cabin, which has been done, (2) install a ramp at the front entrance, and then (3) fix the electrical system, adding conduit, etc. There are some credit balances with local businesses which need to be inventoried.

Connie also said that there is a blacksmith who has offered to do an ironwork sign for us, not clear if this was for 488 Village Road or for Clausen cabin or both. This would require board action.

The Parking and driveway permit for 488 Village Road has been obtained, no further action needed at this point. Since no money is needed, this was tabled to bring up at board meeting.

Property improvement inventory. Connie had mentioned last week that she had started an inventory of improvements made to the various parcels of land and buildings. Mindy offered to continue on with the project in an email. Connie passed on some paperwork and a file folder to Mindy and said there were some miscellaneous Gazebo papers which she had left on the table last week, and if anyone runs across them, to set them aside.

Further explanation of “Expense” portion of accounts – Connie said the GAAP division of records is by restricted/ non-restricted/ partially restricted. Her list from JD Accounting firm outlines what needs to be done. We could pay them to create books about our finances, including FASB Board Statement, Financial Position, Income Statement, and Statement of Cash Flows.

The IRS financial filing form includes revenue, assets, liabilities, functional expenses, and is segregated by organization service. IRS Form 990 from 2014 was a good estimate. If the organization made more than $50,000 this needs to be filed. Details need to be filled out such as cash contributions, grants, memberships, solicitation permit, etc. Double-entry books can be done with Quick Books. Form 990 is due on the 15th day of the 5th month after the fiscal year (as determined by when the annual meeting is held). This would make this form due March 15? It was emphasized that although as a 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation we would not owe taxes, we do need to file a financial statement, and confirm that we are still working towards our stated mission as a library. She also mentioned that the last section of the financial policies needs to be revised because it implies that we don’t have to file paperwork with the IRS.

We discussed having a work party for Saturday, November 21 so that we can familiarize ourselves with the files in the cabinets and assist Phil with the task of organizing the records. Phil said he would be arriving around 9:30 or 10, and would let us know more definitive information when he knows. Mindy suggested that another work party could also be held the next Saturday over the 4-day weekend, but the decision was to see if we needed that extra time.

Next meeting was scheduled for December 1, 2015, because November 24 is 2 days before Thanksgiving and some people felt they would need that time for holiday preparations.

Connie stated that she would be heading out of town to spend time with her sister, so she wanted to complete turn-over of records tonight. Phil had thought she would be able to come to one more meeting, but she said she couldn’t. Mindy did ask if she would leave her JD Accounting list, but she wanted to keep it. It is possible we could get a copy of this at a later date.

Connie turned over the following records:

  • Spreadsheets to Phil and files to merge with the bank statements he has been organizing.
  • Energy audit to Mindy
  • Statement of Activities information to Susan (note: Connie called this a Profit/Loss Statement, which as a non-profit we don’t have, but document may have this latter title)
  • Financial Scan paperwork – Rasmusson Foundation does their vetting using these methods (left in the office area?)
  • Non-Profit Procedures and Guide “the green book” to be left at JTEL office.
  • Examples of Profit/Loss charts (left in the office area?) (The term Profit/Loss was Connie’s, but it may reflect the title of the paperwork, so am leaving it as she said it. As a non-profit, future references to this document should be corrected to Statement of Activities).

Meeting was adjourned at 9 pm.

Respectfully submitted by Mindy Gallagher

Grants Committee agenda 2015-11-22

The new Grants Committee will meet on Sunday, Nov. 22nd, 4:00 PM, for the first time, although one member of our group, Amanda Bent, will not be able to make it for this gathering. Members of the committee include:

  • Amanda Bent
  • Chris Campbell
  • Deirdre Helfferich, grants manager
  • Monique Musick, JTEL vice president
  • Gary Pohl

Gary Pohl sent this draft agenda to the committee:

Tentative Agenda – Meeting No. 1

Discussion of Current Grants

  1. Review terms and conditions of the current State and FNSB grants, including limitations on use of funding and balances remaining
  2. Review potential options for best expenditure of remaining grant funds before they expire, including potential additional work at new facility site
  3.  Review amounts dedicated from other sources (bookshelves, donors, etc. – Deirdre has been talking with finance about this)

Discussion of Other Grant Related Items

  1. Review/brainstorm other possible sources of funding (Deirdre has a short list plus a few ideas)
  2. Go over what Deirdre’s role should be as grants manager in the context of the Grants Committee (this one should probably be discussed again for final recommendation when Amanda gets back and then formalized at the next board meeting).
  3. Determine organization and assignments for the Grants Committee

Note: Someone will need to take minutes for posting on the website similar to what the Finance Committee has been doing.

Committee members have been sent copies of the state and borough grant contracts and associated correspondence.

Finance Brief

The Finance committee met tonight and held a productive meeting.  The borough taxes have been paid, the post office box is secure for another year.  Mindy Gallagher again took meticulous notes which, I hope, will appear here shortly.  To make a brief summary, I have the following.

The binder of bank statements was examined and agreed to be valuable.  The new chart of accounts was discussed and consensus was reached on a program of verifying ground truth to a 7 year record of transactions.  Susan Osborne will work back from the present, seeing to the settlement of current accounts.  I will work forward from the 7 year basis in collaboration with Susan  the meet in the middle with a rigorous set of accounts.

A report will need to be filed with the Borough accounting for the 2015 Community Revenue Sharing funds.  This is fairly high priority since we are behind schedule on it.  The borough is supporting us in our on going renovation of the White Building to house the administrative office for the project.

Connie Huffman was with us again to provide guidance on the work she has done while in the office of Treasurer over the last couple of years.  She provided a considerable amount of paper, digital, and spoken data that will help us move forward over the next several months of transition.

I thank everyone for their initiative and support.



Finance Committee Agenda 2015-11-17

Minutes of November 10, 2015 meeting

Old Business

  • Borough property tax payment
  • P.O. Box rent
  • Signing authority change on bank accounts
  • Checking account balances (has the check ledger deficit been resolved?)
  • Debit card questions?
  • Biennial Report status
  • Other items from the To-Do list on the laptop

New Business

  • Need to record committee meeting hours and other volunteer times in log book
  • “Can of Money” is from Library Music Festival.  Deposit amount?
  • Property improvement inventory – Mindy
  • Ledgers, Receipts, paper trail system – Susan, Phil
  • Further explanation of “Expense” portion of accounts — Connie

Editors Note:

We have Mindy Gallagher to thank for this agenda.  It was converted to Word Press format from the original Microsoft format by me.  I hope the punctuation is not too badly messed up.

Finance Committee Minutes

November 10, 2015

Meeting was scheduled to begin at 6:30 pm, Phil’s copy of Clausen cabin key had been given to Amanda for copying, and she had not brought them back. Susan, Hal, Mindy, Phil started meeting at Golden Eagle.

Topics discussed: receipt for chainsaw work at Passive House property does not include an amount paid or where the money came from. Need to have a standardized receipt and ledger system.

Connie arrived and meeting officially began at Clausen Cabin, 7 pm.

Board members present: Phil Rulon, Susan Osborne, Hal Osborne, Mindy Gallagher. Connie Huffman as outgoing Treasurer also present. Syrilyn Tong, committee member, arrived later.

Purpose of meeting was for Connie to update the new Finance Committee about the financial records and system of the JTEL.

Connie stated nothing had been done on the books in the past 2 months.

She just started an inventory of what has been built on what property. Not completely finished with project, and it will need to be checked against borough records.

Accounting system on laptop was originally QuickBooks, but she needed QuickBooks Non-Profit, so she was able to download software from TechSoup, a low-cost non-profit support website. Elizabeth (last name?…) tried to help her with this.

Borough property tax paid in September, but wasn’t sure when second half was due. Mindy said it was due November 2.

Electricity and utilities are automatically deducted from account,

Jasmine gave her a can of money at the BOD meeting held before the October 18 annual meeting, She didn’t know where it came from, but did deposit it into an account.

At some time she did go to an accountant to set up books. Couldn’t remember her name, but Chena (?) Koponen recommended her.

Computer laptop records: Sleek New is the new system, Incorporated is the old records.  Auditor’s Copy can be used to update records

  • Chart of Accounts Immediate Access (?)
  • CRS Restricted funds contains no money
  • State Grant is about $30,000 where is this located in records?
  • Checking account ledger on computer showed a deficit (in the red) of over $4000.00. Connie said this didn’t actually reflect the account balance. The actual amount of money in the account will need to be verified.

Connie said we need a debit card for paying bills, and might also want a credit card. Phil felt we need to talk with the bank about accountability for payments. Connie currently has a debit card in her name which draws on JTEL funds, she will turn it in.

Post office keys: Jasmine and Phil have keys, Susan was given Connie’s key to P.O. Box 468, although she wanted Susan to check and make sure it was the right key and not the key to Connie’s personal P.O. box.

Maintenance vs. Repairs should be kept separate in accounting.

Little expenses coming up:
Fee for State for AG Office for soliciting donations — can file this with biennial report
Don’t need to pay to change officers on biennial report unless 1 person owns 5% of the stock, she confirmed this with a woman at the State, but new committee members wanted to check into this requirement. Connie thinks we don’t need to pay the fee when we update officers.

Connie turned in checkbooks, laptop, 2 loose-leaf binders, still has another folder at home with information which she needs to pass along.

To-do list:

  • Borough property taxes: November installment is now past due, Connie said she would pay it with debit card.
  • Insurance: paid $600/year the last few years, plus $300 on gazebo, for a total of $900. She has a list of expenses on gazebo. Insurance is held by Hale (?) (Michael’s dad). (note: I do not have better information about this.) Susan thought we might want to research a better insurer, or at least do a comparison of costs.
  • Need to get signing authority changed over at the bank.
  • Bank statements are in binder from last 2 years, in file cabinet before that.
  • Checking account ledger on laptop needs to be checked and balanced.
  • One of the binders included credit accounts at various places, including GVEA, Fairbanks Fuel Distributors, Spenard Builders Supply, Northland Wood (?), and a $500 gift card (note: I didn’t see it, so don’t know where that was held).
  • JD Account information Connie found online summarized what was needed.
  • Mindy found a membership envelope dated October 2014 on the table, with $10 bill in it. Turned it over to new Treasurer Susan Osborne to deposit in account.
  • P.O. Box rent. Didn’t know when that was due, but Phil Rulon will check into that and pay it.

Connie expressed concern that we may need to address zoning for parking at the Passive House property. Deirdre had felt that we wanted to encourage walking to the library, but Connie felt some people would need to drive at least to Ester. Since there is no library building currently on this property, this concern was tabled until later.

Meeting adjourned at about 8:30 pm.

Editors Note:

We have Mindy Gallagher to thank for these minutes.  They were converted to Word Press format from the original Microsoft format by me.  I hope the punctuation is not too badly messed up.  There was mention of the password for the project laptop in the original.  This has been omitted in this version.

Finance update

There is about 5 months of concise, balanced, data in the new chart of accounts.  It will take some research to bring all of the 7 year data into the new chart.  It takes a couple of hours to bring a month of data into balance, more if there is a fundraiser involved.  There is a wealth of written data available to ground truth the system but it takes some time to sort through it and put it where it needs to go.  We will need to solicit the help of the many folks that have contributed to the financial picture in the past.

The good news is that the former finance people left a broad paper trail about what was done and when.  We simply need to read, categorize, and input the data.

The Finance committee will meet next at Clausen, 2015-11-17 1830 AKST, all are welcome.


Misc. chores

  • The Post office box renewal was done yesterday.
  • There is a new black binder on the desk with 7 years of chronologically sorted bank statements in it.  This will be useful for the chart of accounts overhaul.
  • The laptop had quite a bit of built up cruft in the installed applications folder which has been cleaned up now.

Thoughts on project priorities

It’s very important that we prioritize the operation of the library that we are stewards of, over the library we would like to be stewards of.  The only way we will be able to expand the project is to establish the present circumstance on a stable platform.  The expansion program we have adopted depends critically on the ability to maintain the project on a firm fiduciary basis under the circumstances we have before us.  We are the stewards of the Clausen facility.  Someday we would like to be the stewards of the Passive House facility.

It’s obvious that the Design of the Passive House facility is an inspired and pioneering effort.  What’s less clear is whether Passive House is the immediately critical venue for providing books to read for families in the community.

Clausen is a venue for making books available in the very near term.  It is also a facility we are responsible for in the here and now.  Diverting resources to Passive House,  to the sacrifice of Clausen, abrogates our responsibility to the community to provide access to the materials we have on hand.  It’s like telling the village that we’ll have this for you as soon as we pull off something we can’t afford right now.  Its important that we provide for the village, what we can, right now.

In the near term it;s important that we develop a five year plan for the Clausen facility that secures the development and operation it as our main library facility.  It’s quite possible that we will be using Clausen for our stacks for many years to come.  The good news is that we can afford Clausen.  It’s not as big as we would like, but it’s certainly bigger than what we’ve had in the past.  To afford it and develop it we will need to make decisions and allocate funds that place a high priority on making it available for the community to browse our books there.  The Passive House project is high on nobility and ambition, but perhaps less high on priority.