More news on the restructuring front

Jay Brim, who as chair of the Connectional Table’s legislative committee led the drafting of the Call to Action restructuring legislation, offered more news on the legislative front yesterday.

Greg Nelson, the director of communications for the Oregon-Idaho Annual (regional) Conference, reported this news at the Association of Lay Leaders meeting on April 23.

Brim announced that backers of the Call to Action restructuring plan would let the General Council on Finance and Administration remain as a separate agency. Under the current legislation, GCFA would be merged with eight other agencies to form the new Center for Connectional Mission and Ministry.

Brim told the lay leaders that Call to Action plan would still streamline agency operations by getting rid of once or twice yearly board meetings for most, or as Brim called them, “junkets that happen once or twice a year to ratify work that has been done by better people.”

Tracy Merrick, who helped draft the Methodist Federation for Social Action’s alternative restructuring plan, also had his own news to announce.

He said MFSA would “now accept and would support a change to their plan” so that the United Methodist Board of Pension and Health Benefits would remain on its own.

Both changes came after United Methodist chancellors, GCFA board members and the pension board raised concerns that merging finances and programming would increase the denomination’s liability risk.

These plans, as well as Plan B, also discussed at the lay leaders meeting, will go before the General Administration Legislative Committee on Thursday.

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