I attended the CRCA annual general meeting last Thursday. Here is what I thought were the salient issues:
• The audited financial report is not completed as required in their bylaws
• The board did not approve a budget
• The auditor is not confident that motions were made and approved at board meetings to approve expenditures
• The auditor has concerns with conflict of interest issues and lack of transparency
• The County of the MD of Rockyview is concerned with conflict of interest and governance.
• The board indicated that administration/staff spent money without their authorization. This would be impossible as the CRCA bylaw -article 8.1.6 – indicates two of four board directors assigned by the board can sign cheques. Now, if the board did not adhere to this bylaw then it may have been possible that staff issued cheques without the board’s approval. That however leads to a bigger issue.
• Untendered contracts were awarded
• The Annual General Meeting was not held prior to December 20 as required in the bylaws
We understand that members who serve/volunteer on boards do so to help the community and in the case of the CRCA, to help the kids. It is a feel-good story and we appreciate the time and effort put into serving on the board. Their hearts are in the right place. However, having the best of intentions is unfortunately not always sufficient. Serving on the board carries responsibilities. Failing to meet your responsibilities can have profound consequences.
The treasurer’s responsibilities are identified in the following CRCA bylaw
Article 7.7.4 Treasurer. The treasurer is responsible for all financial transactions, financial accounts, budgets, financial audit procedures and reporting of same to the Board of Director and those branches of government as may be required.
All concerns with inappropriate expenditures, failure to produce a budget, failure to tender a contract, failure to have an audited report completed on time, failure to have motions passed at meetings for expenditures rests upon the shoulders of the treasurer. The President, who is the Chief Executive Officer of the Association, is also responsible for these failures.
This is a failed board, not because they weren’t trying to help the community – trying to do good. They simply lacked the skills required to run an association that has substantial assets, significant revenues and expenditures and important responsibilities to employees and their families.
The good news is that a nominating committee has been established to find new board members. I am sure that skilled people with good intentions will put their names forward.