Issue 86 of Administration Matters

It’s tax season: Updated tax guides are now available through Portico.

Portico Benefit Services provides ministers and congregations participating in the ELCA benefit program with no-cost access to annual tax guides. For ministers, Clergy Tax Return Preparation Guide by Richard R. Hammar gives special attention to tax-related topics most relevant to ministers. For congregations, Federal Reporting Requirements for Churches by Richard R. Hammar helps congregations understand their federal tax-reporting requirements.

Rostered Ministers Gathering – early registration ends March 31.

Let this gathering be an opportunity for you to remember, reclaim, rekindle and revive yourself. Gather with colleagues from across the church for fellowship, renewal, continuing education, worship, Bible study and refreshment for your spirit. The registration fee includes access to the plenary sessions and workshops, as well as participation in Presiding Bishop Elizabeth Eaton’s opening reception and the Wednesday evening banquet and lunch each day. >More

Enjoy the ELCA Federal Credit Union ministry card, designed with your congregation in mind.

Credit cards are a necessary part of today’s world, but not all cards are the same. As a cost-effective alternative to standard corporate credit card programs, consider the ELCA Federal Credit Union’s ministry card program, and participate in a financial cooperative that supports other ministries and members of this church. Benefits for your congregation include:
• Ability to issue cards to pastors, staff and volunteers, with no minimum requirement on the number of cards.
• No impact on or relationship to the user’s personal credit or credit score.
• Low interest rate.
• No annual fee.
• Worldwide acceptance along with travel and insurance benefits.

For additional information or to apply, contact the ELCA Federal Credit Union.

Keep your building safe from wayward vehicles.

As you develop or review your organization’s risk control plan, you will likely consider many ways your property could be damaged or people injured — weather-related incidents; an armed intruder incident; vandalism, theft or arson; or child abuse. But a possible event that may never cross your mind is one that happens more often than you might think — a vehicle crashing into a building. >More

Unemployment Exemption for Churches

Nonprofit organizations enjoy special privileges under unemployment laws. Notably, churches and other religious institutions are entirely exempt from unemployment coverage. For more information on the Federal Unemployment Tax Act (FUTA), review IRS Publication 1828, p. 22, and IRS Publication 15-A, p. 9.