This item is taken from the September 2004 newsletter.

Rocky Mountain Conference Adopts New Accountability Policy

As reported in the second quarter 2003 MCA newsletter, Norm Smith wrote to the Rocky Mountain Conference (RMC) Executive Committee asking them to take certain steps toward accountability reform. Briefly stated, the request was made that the Conference Executive Committee as the representatives of the members of the RMC, take the initiative on behalf of the RMC church members, to verify that conferrence business at higher conference levels is conducted ethically and honestly in accord with all chruch policies. This seemed like a reasonable request since the local conference is the channel by which the support of members is given to the higher conferences.

While the RMC Executive Committee declined to accept responsibility for taking initiative on their own, they did take the enormous step of offering to be a participant in such verification when an individual member takes the initiative to request it in a given instance. Considerable thanks is due this executive committee for taking this courageous step.

The RMC Executive Committee has several high priority issues with which they are currently dealing. It is not surprizing that they were not able to address this issue immediately. At a later time the following item from the first meetings minutes was presented along with a policy for consideration as proposed by the administration. This policy proposed by the administration was approved.

Accountability in the Church

 

Accountability in the Church
86:2003

Norm Smith a lay member from the Aspen Park Church made a presentation to the Executive Committee about the concern he has that the higher levels of the church do not always follow a policy of openness in communication with members. He did express appreciation for the openness that the RMC administration has demonstrated over the years in communicating with members. He presented the following proposed action for the committee to consider approving:

“A possible resolution regarding concern for accountability in the church—We recognize as non-negotiable the individual church member’s need for a reasonable certainty that the church at all levels is operating according to a high ethical standard. The Rocky Mountain Conference as a constituent member of the Mid America Union Conference and indirectly of the General Conference, shares this need for certainty in ethical conduct of higher conference levels. We recognize that meeting these needs requires the establishment of channels of verifiable accountability between all conference levels from GC to Unions to local conferences. As the governing body of this local conference we the Executive Committee accept the responsibility to require verifiable accountability from the higher conferences levels in order to meet both our own imperatives and to meet the needs of our constituent members.”

A motion was made and seconded to approve the above proposed action.

After much discussion about the document and the wording and implementation of some portions of the document,

Motion to refer: the proposed document and concept to the Conference and Union officers with Norm Smith. They are asked to refine the wording on the document and bring a revised document back to the December Executive Committee. VOTED

The above action was voted in September of 2003. Due to all the budget and administrative issues that administration was dealing with since the fall of 2003, administration has not had the time to bring back a proposal to the committee before this time.

The following is administration’s proposal for an action on the issue of accountability in the church:

Accountability Policy for Rocky Mountain Conference

The Rocky Mountain Conference (RMC) pledges itself to operate with the highest ethical standards and in accordance the NAD Working Policy.

This includes a willingness to respond to requests from our constituent members if and when they have concerns about the operations of the Conference, the ethical conduct of an employee of the Conference, or the decisions of the Executive Committee.

As an Executive Committee, we are also willing to consider requests from our constituent members to the Union, Division and/or General Conference for additional information when concerns arise about the operations or ethical conduct at those levels of the organization. After discussion with the constituent member of their concerns, if the Executive Committee agrees that this is an appropriate concern that needs clarification from a higher level, it may vote to pass on a request for additional clarification to the appropriate entity.

Constituent members of RMC who have issues of accountability with the Conference, Union, Division or General Conference should present their concerns in writing to conference administration. Administration will place their request on the agenda of the next scheduled meeting of the Executive Committee. The individual will also be invited to be present at the meeting of the Executive Committee to explain their concern(s) and dialogue with the Executive Committee about the issue(s).

Depending on the nature of the concern(s) raised, the Executive Committee may vote to go into “executive session” (committee members only present) to discuss what action they may take. The individual who raised the concern(s) will receive a written response as to what action the Executive Committee has taken.