Preparing to Meet the Custodian Trustees
Before granting final approval the trustees are going to want to know exactly how the project will be managed; before, during and after. Whilst this can seem an arduous process, considering these questions now will give the trustee’s confidence that you know what you are doing, but will also help the project to go a little more smoothly.
We have compiled some questions that you should consider prior to meeting the custodians for trustee approval.
Pre Project Considerations
1. Would it be beneficial for the PCC to register as a charity? The following link to the charity commissions website may be helpful: https://www.charitycommission.gov.uk/
2. Have you consulted your insurers? Will temporary changes be needed to the policy whilst the work is undertaken? Is your own public liability covered, especially if you hire other premises etc.? The “should we tell you if we are having work done at the church?” tab on this link offers some advice: http://www.ecclesiastical.com/churchmatters/news-and-faqs/faqs/keeping-us-informed/index.aspx
1. Do you know exactly what is included under the contract? What exactly has the contractor agreed to do? Does it require the PCC to provide any service / materials / labour etc.?
2. Who is responsible for CDM (Construction Design and Management Regulations). Is it the PPC or the Contractor? This is best placed in the hands of an experienced professional.
3. What level of finishes and furnishing has been agreed to? Is the contractor doing the painting, fitting carpets, window blinds etc.? Does this cater for all the different types of functions that will be undertaken once the project is complete? I.E. childcare, gym, church services, café etc.
4. Has a Quantity Surveyor been engaged / hired, if so has their report been fully read and understood and the recommendations considered?
5. Has the PCC sort legal advice on all the documents to which they are party?
6. What are the clauses / provisions within the contract for variations? Those items / events for which the contractor can charge you an extra amount outside of the agreed sum?
7. Do the contractor (and sub-contractors should they be used), and all professionals engaged (i.e. architect, consultants and surveyors) have full indemnity insurance & public liability insurance?
Financing the Project
1. Have all the financial risks been considered and evaluated and the appropriate contingency allowed for within the budget?
2. What are the mechanisms for agreeing and paying variations?
3. How will payments from grant providers be received; via cheque, BACS?
Whilst the Project is ongoing?
1. Have you scheduled regular meeting with the contractors to keep a track of what’s happening.
2. Is the PCC going to continually review the risks, such as variations, whilst the project happens?
3. Who will be the PCC’s principal point of contact with the contractor; Church Warden, Vicar, Project Manager? Nominate one person and stick to it!
Day to Day Cash flow
1. Whilst the project is ongoing will you have sufficient cash to meet your day to day costs?
2. Have you allowed for extra day to day costs whilst the project is undertaken, especially the cost of hiring rooms or halls should you own be inaccessible due to the works.
Post Project Issues
1. What are the projected costs for utility bills once the project is completed?
2. What are the projected costs for maintenance?
3. Will the project lead to any ‘new’ costs that the PCC has to meet? I.E. extra cleaners, security, caretaking etc.?