Does my pledge really make a difference?
You bet it does! On Monday, May 6th the board will be voting on our budget for next fiscal year and at last count, we are still $ 85,000 short of our goal and have not yet raised enough funds to cover even our baseline budget, referred to as our Level Services Budget, which does not provide for any discretionary increases. While we anticipate that these pledges will be made, we cannot approve a budget based on an expectation. If we are unable to raise sufficient funds, the board will have to make difficult decisions and budget cuts from last year.
Our Annual Budget Drive Committee has been hard at work. To date, they have received 147 pledges representing $ 365,000, or 81% of our total goal (and $ 8,700 in UUA/MassBay dues). That leaves 67 pledges remaining representing $ 85,000.
This year is not so different from other years. There are always last minutes pledges that come in, however last year, because of late pledges, the board had to delay completion of a draft budget beyond the May business meeting. We had to send a special appeal letter home to clearly communicate to people the seriousness of the budget shortfall at that time. We were eventually able to raise the needed funds and passes a balanced budget at special meeting we called in June.
We will not take such measures again this year and we will pass a balanced budget. However, if we are unable to raise the required funds, a balanced budget will mean difficult cuts will need to be made.
The good news is that if all expected pledges come in, we will be able to reach our goal and avoid budget cuts.
If you have already made your pledge this year, I’d like to give you my hearty thanks. I am especially pleased to learn that 25 of the pledges are from first time pledgers.
If you have not yet pledged, please do so right away. Please pledge today! It matters!