Board of Pensions 2022 Benefits
The Board of Pensions (BOP) has announced the time frame for employers to select benefits offered to employees for next year. The window for creating your employer agreement opened on July 19, and employers will have through Oct. 8 to select employee benefits and finalize their employer agreement with the BOP for 2022. Full details of 2022 benefit costs are now available by logging into Benefits Connect. Please click here for more information on 2022 benefits offerings and how to create your employer agreement.
Checking your Benefits Accounts
For those who participate in benefits programs from the BOP through your employer, you should be regularly checking your accounts – Benefits Connect for medical/pension and Fidelity if you have a retirement savings account (RSA). You should log in to Benefits Connect, and make sure the salary information submitted by your employer is up to date. If you have an RSA with Fidelity, you should check to make sure your requested contributions – and, if applicable, employer contributions – are being regularly deposited into your account.
American Rescue Plan Act
On March 11, President Joe Biden signed the American Rescue Plan Act, a $1.9 trillion coronavirus rescue package designed to facilitate the United States’ recovery from the devastating economic and health effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. Here is some information from Suttle & Stalnaker about how the provisions of the act may benefit you and your church.
Please note that though the SBA is no longer accepting PPP loan applications, there is still assistance for employers available through the Employee Retention Credit. This credit was established under the CARES Act and encourages businesses to keep employees on their payroll. The refundable tax credit is 50% of up to $10,000 in wages paid by an eligible employer whose business has been financially impacted by COVID-19. Church Law & Tax has an article with detailed information, and they recently held a free webinar on the topic, a recording of which is available here. I have the handout from the webinar available.
Free Information Available from Church Law & Tax
How prepared is your church to handle a variety of situations affecting finances? Church Law & Tax have several free checklists to help churches answer this question. They are here and include:
- “Are We Practicing Safe Fundraising?”
- “Are We Violating Copyright Law?”
- “Do We Follow Sound Employment Practices?”
- “How to Select Church Insurance?”
Stewardship Kaleidoscope – Stewardship Education for Everyone
Early Bird registration ends Aug. 1 for Stewardship Kaleidoscope 2021. The event is Sept. 13-15 and is available for both in-person and virtual attendance. The in-person event will be held in Cincinnati. Click for conference information and registration.
Staying on Budget During the Summer Giving Slump
In this free article, Church Law & Tax has five suggestions for coping with the dips in regular giving that churches can experience during the summer months.
Church Financial Leadership Grants Available
From the Presbyterian Foundation: Grants are available to assist pastors to attend continuing education opportunities, which will help them in leading their congregations toward financial and missional vitality. Click for more information. Church stewardship team members are encouraged to apply with their pastors. Download and complete the grant application. Applications for Stewardship Kaleidoscope, one of the pre-approved events, were due by July 16. All applications received now will be reviewed and processed based on fund availability. Grant applications may take up to four weeks to process.
The Presbyterian Foundation also has additional resources, tools, and other support to provide pastors and church leaders help “to address the financial and leadership challenges of congregational ministry and mission in the 21st century.” We encourage you to visit their website to see what is available and how it may help your church.
From the Board of Pensions Connections Newsletter
The Board of Pensions is offering two virtual financial well-being seminars within the next month. (All times listed are Eastern time.) They are:
- Estate Planning for Ministers – Thursday, Aug. 12, 2-3 p.m.
- Well-Being Respite: Making Faithful Decisions at the End of Life – Wednesday, Aug. 18, 1-4 p.m.
Also, they have a 3 Misconceptions About Saving for Retirement video that you can watch. Find out more about common misconceptions regarding retirement savings.
2021 Special Offerings Calendar
Here is the calendar for the four churchwide Special Offerings of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), of which two remain:
PEACE & GLOBAL WITNESS: Sept. 5 to Oct. 3
CHRISTMAS JOY: Nov. 28 to Dec. 19