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Alterations to PCC accounts

THE SYNOD voted to approve the Church Accounting Regulations 2006, whicMichael Chamberlain (Archbishops Council) described as "necessarhousekeeping, an essential ingredient of stewarding".The existing regulations for parochial church councils duplicated many othose for accounting by charities. The 2006 regulations enabled PCCs to applthose same accounting practices a much more streamlined format, which did noneed constant revision.While PCCs were under the same regulatory regime, they were not tieirrevocably to the same reporting regime: the Church retained the right to maksome of its own decisions. All PCCs, even those with income under 10,000should continue to have a professional audit.Mr Chamberlain assured the Synod that treasurers were not being abandonedGuidance for PCCs would be provided in a new edition of the Green Guide, andif approved, the regulations would come into force on 1 August 2006, puttinPCCs on a better legal basis for the future.Robin Stevens (Chelmsford) supported the new regulations as appropriate fothe Church at this time. Regulations that used to be written in "church-speakmust now sing more closely from the Governments hymn-sheet, he said.Gavin Oldham (Oxford) welcomed further revision of the Green Guide, buraised three concerns: transparency had been recognised as the guidinprinciple, but had to be communicated effectively; he was troubled at thburden on parishes of direct regulation by the Charity Commissioners; and manparishes might be uneasy about their lack of knowledge about fiduciarresponsibilities. He hoped, for the sake of hard-working, voluntary treasurersthat these issues would be addressed.The Revd Stephen Lynas (Bath & Wells) was concerned that some PCaccounts filed by diocesan offices did not comply with the Charities Act. Hfavoured simplicity, but questioned whether the Commissioners were ready for flood of up to 12,000 sets of accounts, and also the wisdom of there being nrequirement for dioceses to see PCC accounts.

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