MBCH approves loan, elects trustees - Word&Way

MBCH approves loan, elects trustees

Bridgeton — The Missouri Baptist Children's Home will borrow funds from its own foundation to cover construction costs of its new spiritual life center. MBCH trustees approved the proposal at their Oct. 12 session in Bridgeton.

Board members initially approved establishing a line of credit for construction and for operating costs for the home's children and family ministries division at their July meeting. At that time, trustees directed the entity's executive committee to contact several lenders, including the MBCH Foundation. The foundation offered the lowest percentage rate, and the interest would return to the entity.

Under the agreement's terms, the children's home is limited to a loan of up to $750,000 for construction costs. The line of credit for children and family ministries cannot exceed $100,000.

Executive committee members emphasized that money received from pledges made to the home's capital campaign would be used to repay the construction loan. Although the MBCH generally takes a "pay-as-you-go" approach to expansion, money was needed sooner to ensure the new facility is enclosed before the possibility of bad weather. The ministry line of credit was sought to ease operating cash flow.

So far, the campaign has netted $1.3 million in gifts and pledges to be paid out over three to five years.

Trustees also approved allowing the home to use money from memorial funds to cover construction expenses until the loan and line of credit are secured. The money would be repaid to that account once funding is in place.

At the October session, trustees also approved a one-time bonus for MBCH staff. The bonus, which is to be paid out over five quarters beginning Oct. 31, includes $600 to staffers employed for more than three years and $500 for workers employed for three years or less. The bonus applies only to current staff, and workers must be employed at the time each installment is paid in order to receive it.

Vice president for finance Russell Martin called the move "a step of faith in some respects." He noted that giving the bonus might tighten cash flow for six months.

Executive committee members recommended the bonus as a way to boost staff morale. Then-board chairman Greg Morrow said the committee hoped that MBCH would be able to afford other incentives in the future.

Board members also approved the entity's 2005 budget, which does not include pay raises for workers.

Trustees also elected John Koffman as chairman, Elmer McCully as vice president, Dessie Stafford as recording secretary, and Betty Cox and Steve Francis as at-large members of the executive committee for 2005.

In other action, trustees approved budgets and elected trustees for all MBCH boards.

MBCH board members approved election of Gina Loudon, Nancy Pillsbury Shirley, Jean Land and Cox as trustees for the MBCH Foundation, with terms to expire in 2009. A $1,698,124 budget for 2005 was approved.

Gene Edwards and Marshall Link were elected as trustees for the MBCH Properties board, with terms expiring in 2009. A third seat on that body will be filled at a later date. Trustees adopted a $220,000 budget.

Robyn Hassien, Tim Abanathy and Francis will serve on the Children and Family Ministries board through 2009. Carolyn Suyderhoud was elected to fill the unexpired term of Verlena Davidson through 2006. The board's 2005 budget was approved for $7,082,401.

Trustees approved the Professional Development Institute budget at $984,941, and elected Werner Strick to the PDI board.