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GRAND LODGE OF MISSOURI

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keeping, questionable transactions between the Grand Lodge and its nonprofit affiliates, and ambiguity in the By-Laws as to who could commit the Grand Lodge to high cost, long term contracts. Examples include: •

Computer equipment costing in excess of $25,000 was purchased in late September 2014 by the Grand Lodge office without the knowledge of the outgoing or incoming Grand Master and in contravention of Grand Master Haywood’s order to first consult with the Technology Committee and take competitive bids. At a meeting in early October 2014 with Grand Master David Haywood, Deputy Grand Master Brent Stewart, and Junior Grand Deacon Stanton Brown II, the Grand Secretary presented the equipment as a proposal only, not disclosing that the equipment already had been purchased. When the Grand Master subsequently discovered the purchase the Grand Secretary would not or could not provide copies of the invoices. The invoices subsequently were obtained directly from the vendor after payment had been made. This equipment purchased was determined to be far more than required to run the new software and database system and otherwise meet the needs of the Grand Lodge office, but the vendor would not accept its return. A loss of $26,579 is reflected in the year ended October 31, 2014 financial statement and audit Report. Fortunately, the equipment was subsequently sold and some software is being used resulting in a 60% recovery of cost. This adjustment to the books will appear in the year ended October 31, 2015 financial statement.

Our review revealed that for many years expenses in the operating budgets prepared by the Grand Lodge office have been set so high without reference to prior-year actual expenses, and not properly reviewed and adjusted throughout the budget year, that the budgetary controls and oversight by this Committee as mandated by the ByLaws were rendered virtually meaningless. Preparation and review of current-year and proposed subsequent-year budgets routinely were not conducted within the timeframes specified in the By-Laws. This has been corrected for 2014-2015 and on a going forward basis.

During the most recent audit year 2013-2014, expenses exceeded budgeted amounts in excess of 10% in five cases with no evidence of the prior authorization required by the By-Laws. In prior years this Committee in essence was required to retroactively amend the budget after such overages occurred. The By-Laws give this Committee no such authority. This year the Committee made no retroactive adjustments and insisted that all adjustments be made and documented in a manner consistent with the By-Laws.

By-Laws limiting the cash that may be expended upon only the signature of the Grand Secretary were not followed in that the cash limit of $40,000 in the Imprest Account was routinely exceeded. Checks also were drawn on other accounts without the required dual signatures. This now has been remedied.

Over a period of at least three years when records were available, the

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Official Proceedings - Grand Lodge MO Communication 2015  

Official proceedings of the One Hundred Ninety-Fourth Annual Communication Columbia Sept 28-29 A.D. 2015 A.L. 6015

Official Proceedings - Grand Lodge MO Communication 2015  

Official proceedings of the One Hundred Ninety-Fourth Annual Communication Columbia Sept 28-29 A.D. 2015 A.L. 6015

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