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General Board Redesign Steering Committee

Cross Option

by Christopher Bowman
(General Board Chairperson during Redesign)

Table of Contents


Cross Option Recommendation
(Recommendations Common to All Three Deployment Options) July 1996

The Redesign Steering Committee asks that the General Board adopt the
following recommendations for consideration.

[Elected Board]

1.  Change the name of the General Board.

2.  Reduce the size of the General Board from 25 to 20.

3.  General Board and Annual Conference work together to design a process
that more directly addresses the need to secure persons for the General 
Board who have specific needed skills while at the same time maintain 
representation from the districts.  (One such process would see 15 members 
elected by districts and five members named by the Board and confirmed by 
Annual Conference).

4.  Combine the purposes of the Goals and Budget Committee and the Planning
coordinating Committee by replacing them with one group we have tentatively
labeled the Mission Planning Committee (MPC).  The MPC is where the Board,
Annual Conference, and districts interface.  Possible members include the
Board chair, three other members of the Board, the Administrative Council,
Annual Conference Moderator and Moderator-elect, and three District
Executives or district representatives.

5.  Create an Administrative Council of four members, composed of the
general secretary and administrators for program, leadership, and finance.

6.  Ask Annual Conference to consider a policy change that makes the
General board a party to the ministry and calling of district executives.  
This is similar to the process for pastors in which the district becomes a 
third party to a contract with a local congregation.

[Self-Funding Groups]

7. After further study, incorporate SERRV as a wholly owned subsidiary of
the General Board, with the director of SERRV reporting directly to the 
General Board which would also act as SERRV’s board.

8.  Combine the present Material Resources and Disaster Relief programs as
a disaster relief unit.  Attract enough income to meet both direct and
indirect costs with a goal of having a balanced budget.

9.  Gather all publishing and publications into one department called
Brethren Press.  Communications (including Messenger, Agenda and News 
Services), current Brethren Press functions, yearbook publications, 
newsletters, etc., would be produced by this department. Brethren Press 
would be accountable to the board through the office of the General 
Secretary.  While the goal of the unit should be to attract as much income 
as possible, it should no longer be viewed as a self-funding entity.

[Programming and Administration]

10.  Move Volunteer Services (recruiting, training, and placement) and the
coordination of European volunteers into Brethren Volunteer Service.

11.  Operate the conference center at the Brethren Service Center, New
Windsor, on a break-even basis to attract enough income to meet both direct
and indirect costs.  If this cannot be accomplished within three years, we
recommend the conference center to closed.

12.  OEPA and ABC continue to report to the General Board through the
administrator for program.

[Size of Reduction]

13.  The Redesign Steering Committee’s program reduction recommendations
will be based on the need to reduce expenses by at least $2.5 million
(approximately 35-40% of our current budget.)

[Wages, Salary, and Benefit Structure]

14.  The new administration reassess the wage, salary and benefit structure
of board employees.

Affirmed by the General Board, July 2, 1996, for church-wide discussion

RSC