North Austin Civic Association

2006 Year in Review

Brian R. La Cour, Treasurer

We ended 2006 with more money than we started with. It should not have been this way.

At the start of 2006, NACA was facing an uncertain financial future. For years, the cost of printing the newsletter was supported, in large part, by St. David's Root Cause Project. With the closing of that project, the burden of printing costs, some $500 per month, fell entirely upon our shoulders, supported only by a woefully insufficient advertising budget

Deficits for the 2006 budget loomed large and were balanced only by a predicted windfall of grants which, as fate would have it, never materialized. Of course, NACA still had a reserve of over $10,000 from 2005, and this would at least buy us time.

Clever and resourceful thinking on the part of Linda Moore, then president of NACA, led to a solution that not only resolved the budget deficit but, in fact, resulted in one of those rare but infinitely satisfying win-win situations. Since April of 2006, Lakeway Printing has taken control of both the printing and advertising of the NACA newsletter. For their part, an expanded advertising base generates revenue. For our part, an expanded newsletter provides a greater voice for our neighborhood. Of course, fees for advertisers were increased, but this was perhaps compensated by an expanded distribution and more professional-looking advertisements.

So we start 2007 with $10,631.44, just $46.41 over what we started with in 2006. Of this, $6,332.37 is so-called "BFI money," which is a separate fund provided for by BFI, a subsidiary of Allied Waste Industries with a recycling center in our neighborhood, and earmarked specifically for neighborhood beautification efforts. In 2006, we used $4,480.74 in BFI money for various such projects, including upkeep of Heron Hollow, maintenance of the Rundberg median, and planting flower beds along Payton Gin and Hunter's Trace.

A summary of the year's financial activity for 2006 is shown in the accompanying table. Also shown is the planned budget for 2007, which was approved by the neighborhood during the January 18th meeting. As above, several changes with regard to advertising income and newsletter expenses may be noted between 2006 and 2007. Our major sources of income for operating expenses will continue to be membership dues, supplemented by miscellaneous garage sales, raffles, etc. Our major expense for 2007 will be liability insurance, both for NACA board members and for volunteers. Neighborhood beautification efforts will be self-funded through BFI host fees.

In short, the outlook for 2007 is quite good. Stable income, predictable expenses, and a lower net cash flow allows us to balance the budget with a greater degree of certainty than we had just a year ago. Of course, the winds of changes are always blowing. We have enough reserve to weather a storm, but a fair wind is always welcome.