Maintaining Accurate Financial Records

It is important to keep an account of all transactions as they are made. A simple method to use is the general journal, containing three columns: income, expenses, and balance. Log in each transaction when it occurs. Specify the date and a simple description. List it properly under income or expense. Record the balance. It is recommended that the club purchase a general ledger for the club treasurer.• Always obtain a receipt as evidence of payment when disbursing money.

• Use a check rather than cash. This will provide the club with an additional receipt.

• Require members to complete an expense voucher and attach a copy of the receipt to receive reimbursement for expenses.

• Require two individuals to have authorization to write checks. Typically, the club treasurer and president are authorized to write checks.

• Always issue a receipt, especially when you receive cash (i.e., dues and fundraiser money) when receiving money. Ideally, you should purchase a book of cash receipts so copies of the receipts can be maintained by the club.

• Never hold cash personally for any length of time. The treasurer is responsible for the finances of the club. By depositing cash upon receipt, you guarantee that the member’s money or community’s contributions are secure.

Periodically, the bank will submit a statement listing all transactions that took place within a certain period of time. The bank may or may not return the canceled checks, depending upon their policy. When receiving the statement, reconciliation should be made to verify the accuracy of the club’s balance. If this is done upon receipt of each statement, errors can be corrected.

An easy way to perform the reconciliation is to follow these steps:

• Verify all amounts on the statement with amounts noted in the checkbook.

• Place the amount of the bank statement balance in the appropriate space on the back of the statement.

• Add any deposits not noted on the statement.

• Deduct all outstanding checks not yet cashed.

• This adjusted balance should agree with the checkbook balance. If it does not, double-check your arithmetic. If the error is not the club’s, contact the bank and ask that someone review the statement for possible error.

Financial Reports

The treasurer should present a formal report to the board of officers biweekly. The following information should be included:

• Summary of the club’s financial status-current assists, current liabilities, and outstanding debts.

• Profile of the budgeted revenues and expenditures compared to the actual revenues and expenditures with a column showing the year-to-date balance.

• Outstanding bills to be paid.

• Financial concerns, if any.