Red Cedar Zen Community, 1021 N Forest, Bellingham Washington

September 2012 Board Minutes

Red Cedar Zen Board of Directors                         Meeting - September 5, 2012           

Board Minutes                                                                                   

PRESENT: Jeff, Tim, Talus, Edie (Joan has resigned from the vice president role)


encouraging words Tim encouraged the board to have an effective and efficient meeting, using our time well.

full value contract Jeff reviewed our full value contract, which includes talking over any conflicts that might occur.

We commit:

  • to maintaining physical, psychological, and emotional safety
  • to working together to foster both group and individual goals; giving the group what it needs and individuals what they need.
  • to speaking and listening fearlessly to one another and fully talking things through.

review agenda and set time limits

Old Business

1. Financial Reports. Talus had emailed the board the Finance Committee report from their meeting July 13, 2012.  Members may refer to this report on the RCZC website under Homes > Workgroups in the Meeting Minutes folder.

a. In summary, the financial reports for April - June 2012 show that

            Total Assets/Liabilities/Equity was $48,818.66

            Net income for this period was $4938.34 (total for same period 2011 was $2334.51)

            Net from Samish sesshin was $5710.

Financial Reports are on the website at Homes > Work groups > Financial Work Group > in the Financial Reports folder.

b. Due to an accounting error by the City SSC garbage collection, we had been undercharged for 29 months on our collection fee and now must pay $389 in back payments.

c. In order to simplify the workload for the bookkeeper, the tenzo will track the food expenses for retreats rather than receive a separate report.  Tim, however, requested that the expense/income report for the annual Samish sesshin continue to be produced.

d. Marti has found a volunteer bookkeeper to assume the bookkeeping responsibilities and is transferring the work to her (Cindy Spee).  Marti will continue to oversee this role. The board approved this new arrangement and is very happy to have a new, dedicated volunteer (who is an accounting student at WCC).

e. Should any future unexpected change in volunteers occur in bookkeeping, we still maintain our financial data in QuickBooks on our zendo computer where we can access it if needed.

f. Hall rentals: The Finance committee recommended in order to encourage more building rentals that we offer a discount for longer-term renters: 10% reduction per hour for usage for four weeks; 20% reduction per hour for usage for eight weeks.  The board approved this proposal.  Currently the Shambala group is renting and using the hall on Monday evenings through September until their new location is ready for their use.

The board also decided to phase out specific no-fee rentals that do not match the "Community Group" policy, and the "Member Group" rental package because we do not have the availability to take on a third major user beyond Red Cedar Zen and BIMS.Talus will speak to Alborz about these decisions and specific cases.

g. The Finance committee recommended that we no longer advertise the door code as a privilege of membership (see Finance report), as there has been some misuse of this policy.  The board approved this recommendation and wishes all members to know that if they are ever in the building and feel uncomfortable that someone else that they don't know is also here, they should let a board member know so that we can address any unauthorized use of the building.

h. The 501(c)3 application for federal nonprofit status is going forward.  The draft application is on the RCZC website under the Financial committee workgroup.  It is not yet complete but is making good progress.

i. Reimbursements. The board wants to remind volunteers that the Treasurer (Talus) is the person to go to for reimbursement for money spent on behalf of the RCZC.  The necessary forms are on the bulletin board next to the office door.  Once filled out, they should be left in Talus's mail slot on the inside of the office door, or if you don't have that door code, you can leave them in the mail slot in the lobby.  Please attach payment receipts to the form.

j. Altar flower cash advance.  Edie suggested that we advance a small cash budget to the person doing the altar flowers, and the board approved this suggestion.

New Business

1. Wednesday evening meeting time.  The board briefly discussed the input from sangha members at the quarterly Sangha Conversation August 29th and deferred this decision to the Practice Committee, to which this decision more properly belongs. It meets September 29th.

2. Volunteer Roles.  The board reviewed the volunteer organization chart to see where adjustments are needed due to various changes in volunteer availability, as follows:

a. The Board received and accepted Joan Dow's resignation from the Board of Directors of Red Cedar Zen Community effective August 30th, 2012. The Board thanks Joan most sincerely for her service to the Board as Vice President and also her steady volunteer work in the library, front garden, and as shopper. It was decided that for the present, we would not try to fill the vice president role vacated by Joan.

b. For the present, the other directors will remain the same. However, the intention over time is to rotate these roles, so the board is interested in knowing what other members would like to serve.

c. We will also replace Joan on the Library committee with another member (Joan has indicated that Amy Hockenberry is interested. Edie will follow up with Amy).

d. In the Building and Gardens workgroup, now that Toi Geil is moving, Jeff McKenna has volunteered to be the shopper for building supplies.

e. Dave Lynch has volunteered to take care of the front garden (and we need to find someone to oversee the back garden maintenance-watering--as it progresses.

f. In Finance, Marti will move from being bookkeeper to bookkeeping supervision of our new bookkeeper, Cindy Spee.

g. Kate will join the Practice Committee in her new role as Ino, and Talus will remain on the committee because he is Shuso this year.

h. Under Zendo and Programs, it will be noted that Kate is Ino; Chiden is shared by Dorothy Hoskins, Marti, Kate, and Dave; and Edie is Tenzo.

i. Due to short "staffing" we will let go of postering around town for our events and print up only a few 8½ by 11 inch posters to put up, in house.

j. Tim is looking for another member to help with the Website and Technology workgroup.

k. Under Membership and Member Support, we are in the process of dividing up the tasks and hope to have this workgroup populated by the time we meet in October.

The board will continue review and revision of the volunteer organization chart at our next meeting.

3. Stairs to storage area at back of buildingA BIMS member recently fell on exiting the back building storage area. The board talked with Alborz to see what can be done to make that entrance safer. We were told that the landlord is permitting us to use this space, but it is not part of the RCZC lease. Although our group is not responsible for repairing the steps, we want to prevent any future problems with that entrance.  Therefore, the board authorized money for the construction of safe steps, built to code with a handrail, to replace the concrete blocks currently serving as steps. Jeff will will talk with Alborz about the project.

4. Communications in conflicts.  The board agreed that we as a board and as a sangha need to develop a system for meeting and resolving conflicts.  Although we didn't have time to discuss our needs in any detail, we agreed to pursue and develop an approach to conflict resolution for our sangha.

meeting reflection

on relationships, process, values and mission

of good value


upholding the contract

sangha on the horizon



Edie Norton, Secretary

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