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New principles on financial sustainability and policy on transparency and integrity adopted by Sakyong's Council
Jan 22, 2008
The Sakyong's Council has formally adopted new Principles on Financial Sustainability for the mandala as a whole. These apply to the centre of the mandala (support to the Sakyong and the core services), all the practice centres and local Shambhala Centres.
The principles were discussed at length at the recent mandala-wide Planning Meeting convened in November (reported last week on the Shambhala News Service). To read the full text of the principles, please Click Here
In addition to these principles, the council also adopted a Policy on Transparency and Integrity for financial management and reporting. It too, will apply throughout the mandala. To read the full text of the policy, please Click Here
The sustainability principles aim to ensure that all parts of the mandala:
1. Break even each year: revenue must cover expenses.
2. Hold only those levels of debt they can reasonably service with recurring revenue.
3. Manage cash flow with cash reserves. Lines of credit and other forms of short-term debt may be used only be used to manage cash flow, and not become "permanent" debt.
4. Budget with two revenue plans, one reflecting a minimum and a second reflecting the target. Manage committed expenses to the minimum revenue plan in order to avoid the risk a loss.
Additional requirements apply to the Practice Centres, which have already started to work with the new principles.
In the case of the centre of the mandala, a contingency fund is to be established, aiming for 10% of the budget. This would cover unpredictable costs each year. In addition, a reserve fund will be created that would eventually cover three months of base operating expenses to be used only in extreme emergency -- thus providing the normal level of reserves for an organization of our size.
The Policy on Transparency and Integrity commits the organizations within the mandala to the goal of transparency and integrity in financial reporting. This means that members of Shambhala, on whom the mandala's financial support depends, are invited to receive accurate information, both detailed and summary, about the organization's finances. Both traditional accounting reports and reports designed to make information easier to understand will be provided.
The policy then sets out ten measures to be respected so that this policy can be put into effect.
(This announcement was from the Shambhala News Service)