Circuit Assemblies - Do they make money? Convince Chas

by Chaserious 17 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • solomon

    What does it cost for an assembly hall? It is paid for by donations and free labor. Property tax is free (religious use)

    The only thing that costs for the assembly hall are utilities and repairs(again with donated money and labor)

  • Chaserious

    Well, I still do think that all of the things in my OP do cost money, not just utilities and repairs. And I would guess just utilities cost somewhere from $50k-100k per year. I would imagine it costs $50k a year to support the caretaker couple, and I think that's legitimate to pass on. But I see now how the WTS skims some money off the top, so thanks to all for explaining how it works.

  • MrFreeze

    As regards utilities, remember these buildings aren't used all that much. 26-32 weekends out of the year? How much could utilities possibly cost?

    It has already been shown by previous board members how the accounts work.

  • Anony Mous
    Anony Mous

    I've been involved in the accounts and yes, there is definitely some creaming off the top. Once I started doing accounts for the KH, RBC and AH (I posted everything here before) it started my decline since I saw it was all about the money.

    So you know already that there is a business meeting, usually Sunday at noon. The money for that meeting is the figure from Saturday evening so usually there is a small deficit which is parotted again during the session.

    As has been said, there is an automatic dispersion to the WTBTS as a 'donation' depending on the number of people there. There is an automatic dispersion to the WTBTS for KHAA, TOAA and a host of other things (the loan on the building that is impossible to pay off etc...). The CO's, DO's and sometimes Bethel members get their share for their costs (gas and food for that week), the caretakers (who live on the property) get a portion, the CO and sometimes even the DO's (if they live nearby) costs for living there are apportioned and included.

    The AH I was taking care off also operated part time as a literature distribution center for the area so all the costs for trucks and delivery to local kingdom halls were added. After all that has been taken care of there is a number that is usually left over, any number above a certain threshold is automatically transferred to the WTBTS and presented to the next session of that circuit as a 'donation' (yes, there are 2 donations rolled into one) because these trusts can't have over a certain number in their accounts for tax reasons.

    The ACTUAL costs for utilities are paid for by another WTBTS entity (check your local town hall records, there will be ~3-5 businesses on that address), the insurance is run by the WTBTS, the loans are run by the WTBTS. The costs given to the circuits are not based on ACTUAL costs, they are "number of attendees * $150" or some figure like that which supposedly is the "total costs of upkeep over the last year / number of attendees".

    So yes, the sheep keep giving the money, trust me, there are plenty of people lining up for their tax-deduction forms (>$250). And also there are those checks that are given written on "for the worldwide work" or "Watchtower" or any variation that is not resembling the AH 'approved' business name. Those don't go to the local AH, they go directly to WTBTS. Also the donations from the CC machines go directly to WTBTS I've heard but I quit the year they did that.

  • man oh man
    man oh man

    Do you think they would have assemblies if they weren't making money? They eliminate all kingdom halls that do not make them money. I know as my hall was deleted. Publishers had nothing to say about it either. Now we all have to drive a long way to the meetings. They also will not build an assembly hall unless there is enough support for it. It is all about the money friend. Please wake up!

    Another thing that got me was once we had water damage at our hall. we pay the society for insurance. Did they cover us? NOPE! Fix it yourselves and by the way it has to be up to certain standards. Morons!

  • WTWizard

    And how often do they do a "bleed"? They make enough money to pay the bills, they bleed enough to create a deficit and coerce the congregation to make more donations. I wonder what they would do if everyone did a "donation boycott" after the midday intermission of the last day. No one donate anything after noon on Sunday (or, in the event of a Big Boasting Session with only one day, after noon that day). Donate what you are going to during the first day, or during the morning if you are only attending one day, and that's it. That way, when they bleed, they will be up sxxx creek without a paddle, in a barbed wire canoe, since that's all they are getting.

    That way, even if people still insist on donating, it is all done before the noon session. Don't donate, but if you are going to, move it all up to the first day or when you first enter if you are only attending one day. Once you put in the whole amount, don't put anything else in no matter what. If they insist on bleeding, that's their problem. They should have set aside for their bills first and bled what was left after the full program, not bled the whole thing to create a deficit and expect people to donate more.

  • cantleave

    I used to attend them it seemed that the expenses they would announce for a 2-day CA would be around $10k, and for a 1-day it would be $5k.

    That is an arbitary "target" set by the branch. It is NOT the cost of hosting the assembly!

  • JeffT

    I've been working as an accountant in commercial and multi-family real estate for about 25 years. I pulled some old financials and fiddled with numbers a bit. Here's what I came up with.

    First, 100,000 square feet is a huge building. I think most assembly halls are smaller than that. I checked google earth and the one in Puyallup, WA is a little under 30,000. I based my numbers on 30-50K sq ft, and there is a lot of wiggle room in this depending on a lot of factors like local utility rates.

    Utilities (gas, electric, water, sewer, refuse removal) would run about $30,000 a year. Garbage would only have to be picked up on Monday, and heat/ac could be turned down when the building is not use during the week. Sewer is usually based on water usage, again the building is only used on weekends. If they are on a septic system (common in areas outside a city, such as the one in Puyallup) they don't have regular sewer charges.

    A commercial landscaping contract should run about 12,000 a year, but I suspect the WTBS doesn't pay that because they can make the R&F do most of it for free. Ditto janitorial.

    Insurance would also run about 10,000 a year, but may they could easily get a break because its all in house use of the building. They are unlikely to face a lawsuit because some one fell down on the property. They are also unlikely to burn the building down because some one did something stupid (a common occurence in apts and commercial buildings).

    I doubt they pay the caretaker much. Like most other deals with the WTBS he probably gets a free apt in the building and a stipend.

    I also doubt they worry about keeping a capital expenditure fund. If something breaks or it needs a new roof or whatever, they send a letter to all the congregations that use it and tell them to pony up money.

    The three biggest costs for a landlord are onsite labor, taxes and the mortage. Labor has been noted above, taxes don't apply and if there's a mortgage it is almost certainly paid to the WTBS so it shouldn't count as an expense.

    Bottom line, I think they can run that bulding for about $75K a year.

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