May 23, 2018


Over the last months several folks have said they would like more visibility into session meetings. To respond to that request, minutes from each session meeting are now available on the Church’s website (under the “Ministry” tab). That does mean, however, that minutes will be delayed by one session meeting, as the minutes are not official until they have been approved by the session in the meeting following the one in question. To make access as easy as possible, there is a link below in the newsletter which you can use to get directly to the minutes.


Please remember too, session meetings are open and you should feel free to attend. The next meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, June 19th at 10:00AM, in the large classroom at Presbyterian Church of Lake Travis. As of now, there is no meeting scheduled for July as David Evans is not going to be available. The session (at any PC (USA) church) cannot hold an official meeting without a moderator. For those who do not already know, the Reverend David Evans is our moderator.  David is a longtime friend of the PCLT and we are fortunate to have him as the session’s moderator.


One other point that may benefit from a little more detail is the severance package that Laura will receive. The total value of that package, which is in strict compliance with guidelines established by Mission Presbytery, is $23,485. This includes two months’ salary or $10,981 and six months benefits, the added cost of which is $9,504.


She will also receive tax assistance of $3,000, though this has nothing to do with her severance. This tax assistance is an obligation the church has whether or not Laura had resigned.  The reason for this is because of a problem caused by our Quick Books Accounting software which it turns out is not capable of correctly withholding taxes for pastors. So correcting the tax problem was needed to comply with Laura’s original terms of call and not part of the severance.


There are two additional factors regarding church finances that do not impact the amount of the severance Laura received but might be of interest:

  • First, the church has an obligation to pay “vacancy dues” to the PC (USA), equal to 12% of the last pastor’s salary unless the church continues to pay benefits for the departing pastor.  In other words, if the church ceased paying Laura’s benefits on May 31, we would still have had an obligation to pay 12% of her salary into the PC (USA) retirement fund as vacancy dues for up to a year, or until a new pastor is engaged.
  • Second, even though the presbytery has already begun the process of searching for a Designated Pastor who could serve PCLT and though we are hopeful this can be accomplished quickly, the church likely will not engage a new pastor for perhaps several months.  This has a positive impact on the church budget, since during this time the church will not be incurring the cost of the new pastor’s compensation.

Click here to be redirected to the Session Minutes from April 28, 2018.