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Treasurer Trouble!


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Hi there, Abby here once again!

 

I'm a bit concerned over this for our future

 

Our Treasurer has been with us for five years (with a gap year). This has been fine (relatively), but he had a period os some hardship and we agreed to pay him £20 monthly expenses. Within a period of just over a year this has increased to £40, then £60. He has said he'll resign if we don't pay more.

 

At present there has been a bit more for him to do as we are moving and there have been some lengthy forms to fill in and projections to make, however this won't last as we are budgeting for an administrator to take on some of this role and they will be on site at the pre-school so we know what hours they work.

 

Does anyone else pay their Treasurer?

 

Any advice/ideas happily received,

Abby

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Hi Abby - what sort of group are you? Are you committee run?

 

 

Yes we are Committee run, he said he'd like to leave the committee in order to do this paid.

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no we dont pay ours and think the world of her for her hard work - but we are committee run as so voluntary!!!! :o

not sure but think your charitys commision may have something to say about paying him!!!!

Edited by hali
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:o doesn't sound very nice..... do you have anyone else who could step into the role?

 

No-one at the moment, but we've just had our AGM and have a new committee, I'm sure we could find someone if necessary.

 

 

Also I'm concerned as if he wants this to be a job we will require a full job descript, advertising the position and interviews (I think that's a legal requirement).

 

oooh heck!

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Our treasurer is a volunteer and not paid. Committee members are not allowed to be paid at all if you are a charity, but obviously expenses can be paid providing these are receipted in some way. £60 is an awful lot for 'expenses' - at this point it seems more like a wage!

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Our treasurer is a volunteer and not paid. Committee members are not allowed to be paid at all if you are a charity, but obviously expenses can be paid providing these are receipted in some way. £60 is an awful lot for 'expenses' - at this point it seems more like a wage!

 

 

I think £60 seems alot for expenses too, especially as the pre-school seems to pay for the ink, paper and all that so it's only phone calls and his time.

 

The chair is supportive of us both, but I feel that by paying him, he will only want more and when we have moved and the administrator is in place, will he be willing to reduce the amount accordingly? Will anyone have the nerve to ask or follow it up?

 

I don't know what to do.

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Are you a member of the PLA? They have a legal advice line who could support you in this matter.

If he cannot provide receipts for 'expenses' then he is being paid which means his earnings should be declared every year to the Inland Revenue ( however small). 'Time' is not an expense, it is employment. He needs to have an employment status, employed by the committee, PAYE / P46 etc needs to be done. or self employed, (then he needs to be invoiced for work done)

You can also contact the Charities Commision for advice.

This isn't about 'being supportive' or understanding of a persons financial situation, but about legal responsibilities of the committee.

As the Treasurer he should know about financial legal requirements, such as employment issues too.

 

 

Peggy

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After asking you an initial question about the running of your group, I come back to the thread a bit later to find that you've been given loads of helpful advice, all of which I agree with! I don't know of any other committee treasurers who have been paid!

 

Good luck! :o

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I think I may have found an answer (thanks to everyone here who has put insprector Abby on the right path).

 

It seems the Treasurer has to be a trustee (if my interpretation is correct).

A trustee cannot be paid anything other than expenses which are receipted.

 

If so, we are already on dodgy ground and it looks like he will have to like it or lump it - we can't pay!

 

Lets hope my interpretation of the role of a trustee is correct.

 

Thanks to you all for helping me out on this one - wow, and my LEA won't fund joining this! xD

 

£20.00 definitely worth it :o

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Guest toddleo

Interesting thread. We are committee run, our treasurer volunteer resigned (gettting too old and tired out) we could not, no matter how hard we tried, replace him. The committee sought advise, and in the end we recruited a treasurer (he became known as the financial controller and is a god send) I am not sure of the monthly wage he gets, but he works very hard and is so supportive. I know that advise was sought from, I believe the charities commission, and the PLA are aware of our situation. We did have to get a treasurer to countrer sign cheques who is a committee volunteer, but they do not do anything else. He does wages and all the funding, chases late payments, etc...

Edited by toddleo
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If the treasureer is doing a lot of your financial work, fees, bills accounts etc then he is obviously giving up a lot of time which you would have to pay an accountant to do instea or as you have decided employ an administrator. So in that sense he sould be paid for doing a job that will eventually be done by a paid employee. Early years does have an ethos of work being done voluntarily which as we are all becoming more accountable and professional may have to change.

Just a thought!

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Hi there,

 

This is why I am also concerned,I can see that point of view quite well and I know it is hard work to do, however I am also concerned that he is pressurising us.

 

I'd like to ensure we don't break any rules, that we have clear boundaries and a Job Description (paid or unpaid) and that we are not compromising the pre-school in any way.

 

When I consider this, he does do a certain amount, but that will lessen when we move as most of his recent work has been dedicated to our grant applications. What I don't want to do is raise his expenses and then find he's doing less and expects the same or more.

 

We can't afford to pay him a minimum wage, which concerns me as that is what he seems to be asking for. So far his £60.00 monthly expenses are manageable.

 

I work about 30 hours a week and I get paid for 18, I could demand more too, as could my deputy who also puts in alot of unpaid hours, and that's why I'm concerned - this type of thing escalates and if we do give in, there's a good chance other people will be asking for expenses too.

 

Feels like I'm stuck in between a rock and a hard place.

 

I don't know what to do really, the Chair seems to be backing him a bit more now as she's worried he'll leave, I'm against it as I feel it's dangerous and it's all getting a bit messy! On top of it all, he seems to be comfortable sending me an immediate resignation email, then retracting it that same night. xD

 

AArrgghh :o

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At the risk of putting a spanner in the works, if you are employed by the committee - as you are - then it's not your problem to sort out...it's theirs! I don't mean to offend anyone by saying this but I think I'm right aren't I? It sounds as though you're doing an awful lot of worrying and work over this when really it's not your responsibility? I know saying that doesn't help your predicament but maybe it'll stir your committee into action if you point it out!

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At the risk of putting a spanner in the works, if you are employed by the committee - as you are - then it's not your problem to sort out...it's theirs! I don't mean to offend anyone by saying this but I think I'm right aren't I? It sounds as though you're doing an awful lot of worrying and work over this when really it's not your responsibility? I know saying that doesn't help your predicament but maybe it'll stir your committee into action if you point it out!

 

I know what you mean and I'd love to say that to them, but it's the pre-school's future too and they'll all be gone when their kids leave next July (they are all parents of 4yr olds). If I leave it totally with the committee am I not taking a big, risky chance?

I do trust those who have stayed on but really that's only three members of the committee and they don't attend all of the meetings so things could slip through in their absence. We haven't had our 1st meeting with the new committee yet.

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As lots of people have said, it is not possible to be a member of the committee and be paid by the committee - and the £60 he's receiving is clearly not expenses - because presumably he claims for his telephone bills as well from what you said - so it must be a salary. This will probably be below the minimum wage - and here is where things get murky. Is he a volunteer or an employee? Probably an employment tribunal would decide this and obviously if they decide he's the latter the committee will be found guilty of not paying the minimum wage.

 

You are quite right in what you say - if he is paid for his role why can't everyone on the committee be paid - and come to that why shouldn't the staff be paid for all the hours they do?

 

If you do what many other pre-schools have been forced to do and make a new 'financial controller' position then you would need to do all the recruitment procedures - job description, person specification etc. Would he be likely to be a successful candidate? I'm not sure that holding you to ransom in this way is necessarily a good way to demonstrate his team playing attributes!

 

I can understand the dilemma about whether you should leave the committee to sort it out - it is their legal responsibility to hire staff, authorise payment of bills etc. But as you say you'll be there when the committee have gone.

 

I hope you can resolve this quickly - an issue like this hanging over your heads can sap morale - and if the staff become aware of what is going on you might have real trouble on your hands!

 

Keep us posted

Maz

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Hi, I work for a committee run playgroup, but before this I was the treasurer and as with the other positions it is a voluntary (sp?) role. If you are charity registered he would be a trustee, so legally he can not be paid. I will agree that this is rhe committee's problem but understand you are the ones left to clear he mess up if anything goes wrong. In your position I would remind the committee of their legal obligations and see what happens. If he resigns, so be it, there is usually someone willing to step in if it's a case of it needs to be done for the group to exist.

Hope it all gets sorted without to much bother.

Sal

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Technically this is the committee's problem but of course we all know the reality, committee's come and go, and staff basically guide them as to what should be done because we have the experience, the responsibility can be daunting.

 

I am a deputy supervisor in a committee run, sessional setting. Two years ago I also became the paid administrator because the role of the treasurer had become far too demanding for the person doing the job on top of a full-time job and the finances were in a terrible mess. Nobody wanted to take on the role. We have a treasurer but in name only. I get paid for 8 hours a week, during term time. Naturally I do more than that. I was also on the committee for many years as either chair, secretary or treasurer.

 

I agree with Peggy. It seems to me your treasurer is being paid a wage, his expenses could surely not be that much. I think the job should be advertised to cover equal opportunities, with a proper job description as you say, and the 'wage' shown as the individual's income like everybodyelse.

 

Good luck, hope you can get it sorted soon.

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I think first the committee need to make a decision on whether to 'employ' an administrator or not.

If not then the situation with the current treasurer can be addressed, clarification of legal requirements of charitable trustees roles etc, clarification of what is 'expenses' and how they are financially recorded and re-imbursed, all this to be stated and minuted.

If yes to employing an administrator, then the committee need to devise job description etc and follow recruitment process as defined for any other employee of the provision. It would be up to the current treasurer if he decides to apply for the position.

 

Agree this is not your responsibility but totally understand that as supervisor you are in a position to be able to see the 'whole picture', including longer term situations, compared to committee members, other staff etc.

 

Advise the committee, that due to legal implications that you have become aware of that they should address this situation asap, this advise to be minuted, but it is up to them how they procede. Ask the current treasurer of his knowledge of legal requirements under the charities act re: expenses. etc.

 

If nothing is done then continue, at every meeting to point out, and have minuted, any breach of law that you are aware of.

This is how you meet your responsibilities, offer advice, provide evidence of your knowledge re: legislation, ie: website addresses, copies of anything you have downloaded etc. Suggest they talk to PLA, Business link, DFEE ( if it's still called that :o ), Inland Revenue, etc.

 

Then leave them the responsibility which is theirs.

 

Good luck, don't take the burden on your shoulders any further than this, it's not good for your health or wellbeing.

 

Peggy

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Big Big Big thanks to everyone for your comments and support :(

 

I feel a bit more equipped, will make my points at the next meeting and will then allow the Committee to make their decision. I will insist that my point of view and advice is minuted and will then let you all know of any results!

 

Watch this space :oxD:(

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As others have said the treasurer is a trustee of the charity and as such should NOT be paid, anything other than reasonable expenses. As a member of the committee he is setting the pay for the staff, if he is receiving a wage then he should not be a member of the committee, and able to vote on salaries. Is it not possible to employ him on minimum wage for maybe only a small number of hours a week? He would have to resign from the committee, but if he was doing the bulk of the work a new treasurer would not be so hard to find. He would not have you all over so much of a barrel. You could always say that he number of hours, and his pay would be reviewed annually.

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Well alm that a good idea another way aound it.

 

Have to say maybe it might a good thing to have a new treasurer and happy do it and possibly be even better!

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