Date: June 24, 2022
Time: 3:30 p.m.
The special meeting of Finance Committee of the Board of Directors of the Baltimore Children & Youth Fund, Inc. was held on June 24, 2022, via video conference.
Board Members in Attendance: John Morris, Board Treasurer; Louis Williams; Marcus Pollock
The Meeting was called to order by Kera Ritter, Vice President of Finance and Administration, at 3:39 pm.
I. Welcome & Agenda Overview – Kera Ritter, Vice President of Finance and Administration
Ritter welcomed the Committee and public to this special meeting of the Finance Committee of the Baltimore Children and Youth Fund, Inc. (BCYF, Inc.). She reviewed the agenda for the meeting, including a review of the Internal Controls Policy and the budget for Fiscal Year 2023.
II. Internal Controls Policy Review and Changes – Kera Ritter, Vice President of Finance and Administration
Ritter reviewed several necessary updates to the current BCYF, Inc. Internal Controls Policy, given BCYF, Inc.’s shift to a staff structure. These centered around guidelines for contracting and disbursement for BCYF, Inc. staff members.
Ritter reviewed the recommendations around contractual authority spending limits and fund disbursements, wherein contracts require the authorized signature of 1-2 members of the BCYF executive staff team and/or the Board Treasurer or Chair, dependent upon the monetary amount of the contract, and fund disbursements require 1-2 signatures dependent on the payment amount.
Marcus Pollock asked fund disbursements over the threshold would require the President to sign off, to which Ritter responded yes. He also asked whether such a payment would be part of the pre-approved budget, and whether, if money were to be moved around, the Board of Directors would review it. The answer to this was yes.
Finally, Ritter reviewed the recommendation that BCYF, Inc. Institute a spending limit on the BCYF, Inc. Credit Card.
Morris motioned for the recommendations outlined to be presented for approval to the BCYF, Inc. Board of Directors at the June 28, 2022, Board Meeting. Williams seconded the motion. The motion to present the recommendations to the Board of Directors at the meeting on June 28, 2022, was unanimously approved by all Committee members in attendance.
III. Fiscal Year 2023 Budget Review – Kera Ritter, Vice President of Finance and Administration
Ritter reviewed the proposed FY23 BCYF, Inc. Draft Budget line by line, and committee members raised questions and suggestions as they came up through the review.
Pollock asked what types of legal issues would require outside counsel expenses. Ritter replied that these include compliance with Maryland Public Information Act requirements.
Pollock asked whether an audit was completed during the transition period from Associated Black Charities’ oversight. Ritter replied that BCYF was not aware of any audit, as this was not a requirement of the agreement with the City of Baltimore, and that BCYF, Inc. began its own accounting with the City originating July 1, 2020.
Pollock suggested BCYF, Inc. consider the use of technological tools to manage the work of grantees and asked whether there are performance measurement initiatives included in the budget. Ritter replied that these items are accounted for in the “Tech Supplies” line of the budget. Williams asked whether support of employee onboarding is also accounted for in this line, to which the response was yes.
Pollock asked where the funding for promotional materials for BCYF, Inc. lies in the budget. Ritter clarified that this funding is included in the staff salaries, tech supplies, and advertising line items.
Morris asked whether there should be a reserve of funding specifically to implement the strategic plan developed in Fall 2021. Ritter replied that funding for the execution of the strategic plan would be part of the FY24 budget, but that there is room for minor adjustments to the FY23 budget.
Ritter clarified the role of the Fund for Educational Excellence to Pollock: FFEE acts as an advisor, controller, and internal controls for BCYF, Inc. Pollock asked whether some of the services currently performed by FFEE would be transitioning to BCYF, Inc. staff. Ritter responded that yes, some functions and responsibilities will transition to permanent staff as they are onboarded. As a result, Ritter stated, BCYF, Inc. expects to see a decrease in this line item over time, and the funding would move to the salaries line.
Morris asked whether the Committee would revisit and be updated on negotiations with FFEE about their responsibilities and fees over time. Ritter replied that the BCYF, Inc. Finance Committee, and Board of Directors, would be updated and involved in decision-making on this matter. Upon Pollock’s request to learn more about FFEE’s current role, Ritter stated that the Finance Committee will receive details on FFEE’s current agreement with BCYF, Inc. soon.
Morris motioned to proceed with the presented budget and submit it to the Board of Directors at the Board meeting on June 28, 2022. Pollock seconded the motion. The motion to present the FY23 draft budget to the Board was unanimously approved by all Committee members in attendance.
This meeting of the Finance Committee was adjourned at 4:44 pm.