HOWTO Be Treasurer

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When Should You Contact This Officer

  • You would like to make a donation (and get a tax receipt)
  • You need a reimbursement.
  • You are going on Hiatus.
  • You are coming back from Hiatus.
  • You are leaving i3Detroit.
  • You have a problem with your dues balance.
  • You have questions about our tax-exempt status

Measurable Goals of the Treasurer

  • Make all government financial filings on time.
  • 95% Uptime on all e-commerce systems to collect dues.
  • Report once per month on financial status to Board/membership
  • Reimburse member requests within 72 hours. (Initiate if by check)
  • Answer all financial questions from Board or General Membership presented via Slack or email within 72 hours.

Tasks/Responsibilities of Treasurer

  • Pay and archive Bills
  • Receive, deposit and document monies and income.
  • Manage the collection of all dues and all other Accounts Receivables.
  • Manage the Budget and all associated processes.
  • Handle Taxes and other government filings.
  • Set all i3 policies regarding financial documentation and accounting, subject to override by Board Action.
  • Write up receipts for donations, and maintain the donation logbook.
  • Manage all Treasurer assistants.
  • Synchronize with the Membership Coordinator to make sure members that exit are marked in the CRM, their Keys turned
  • Manage the Budget and all associated processes.
  • Use the Transaction Recognition Policies defined by the Treasurer.
  • Present reports to Board and Membership via Board Meetings.
  • When a Treasurer will miss a Board meeting, best practice is to inform the Board email list. That way, the group knows to not delay the meeting waiting for everyone to arrive. It is not necessary to provide an excuse. It is also considerate, before taking a break from the work you are doing together with your colleagues, to briefly inform them, so they know to move forward without holding up deliberations.

Duties breakdown between Treasurer, onboarding, and retention

  • Organize Friday Night Tours
  • In charge of the membership sign up process
  • Gets keys for new members
  • makes sure a CRM login is given to the new member
  • Gets member on e-mail lists
  • gives slack invite/tells them about slack
  • within 120 days contact them about helping out
  • refers change plan requests to Treasurer ->
  • report on new members numbers and analysis of onboarding conversion rate and turn. (onboarding -> membership, or stalled)
  • takes and accounts for dues
  • handles dunning (collections)
  • handles changing of membership plans in the CRM
  • gets re-joined members' key reactivated
  • generates list of people ending their membership to give to offboarding ->
  • collects any information from people leaving and passes them to offboarding ->
  • handles the dead key list, getting keys out of the keypad
  • follows up with people from the treasurer's list of poeple ending membership, either by ceasing payment or request
  • notifies exiting members about:
    • potential left storage and when it becomes i3 property
    • any loaned tools that need to be taken away or they will also become i3 property
    • ask for the key back
    • ask why they are leaving
  • follow up about:
    • storage (empty it, or tell storage@)
    • re-label tools as i3 property (wiki too)
  • refers change plan requests to Treasurer ->
  • collects and analyses information about why members are departing
  • handles flushing of passwords from departing members
  • member flow analysis
    • in vs. out
    • seasonal trends
    • event based trends(any single event that causes an up or down in membership)

Transaction Recognition Policies

For reporting purposes transaction which may have several dates associated with them must have a unique date for a particular reporting/logging system. For the period starting 1/1/14, and until otherwise noted, the following accounting practices are followed.

We operate on a CASH BASIS. This formal accounting term means that:

  • A manual paper check issued by i3 to pay an i3 debt is recognized on the date printed on the front of the check.
  • An online Bill payment, whether via paper check or ACH/EFT will be recognized on the date logged in the Bill Payment History of the online banking account.
  • A debit card transaction will be recognized on the date it clears the bank, as recorded in the Transaction History of the account.
  • A dollar transfer from Amazon will be recognized for accounting purposes as the date logged for the deposit in the Transaction History of the bank.
  • Payments through Amazon will be logged in the CRM automatically under the date as decided by the software.
  • All dollar transfers from Amazon to our checking account will be logged as Dues for reporting purposes, including donations made through Amazon, for simplicity.
  • All cash and check payments to i3 will be recognized for accounting purposes on the date of deposit into our checking account.
  • All cash and check payments to i3 for dues will recorded in the CRM using the date on which they were entered into the CRM.
  • All monies sent to the Treasurer from Zone Cash Boxes will be deposited into the checking account but be accounted separately from the General Fund and will not be counted as Income. Each will be accounted as a {ZoneName} Fund.
  • All monies released from our checking account as taking money from a "ZoneName Fund" will not count as an expense, although a receipt image file will be required to be archived.
  • The Budget Process handles only transactions to/from the General Fund.

Budgeting Processing


  • Make sure that budget@ is set to archive both incoming and outgoing emails permanently.
  • Pass all communication and documentation thru budget@ to insure archiving.
  • Budget@ becomes your permanent archive for the next person.

Processing a Reimbursement Request

  • Get payee name, mailing address, scan of receipt, amount, and Line Item # from the submittal, either from a form reimbursement request (see the Instruction Manual for Budget) or by informally gathering the information to
  • Make sure the name, amount, line item and scan of receipt pass thru budget@. If you are handed paper, photo it and send it to budget@.
  • Send email with amount, name and description to Authorized Agent, per budget. Insert in spreadsheet Color ORANGE.
  • Pester Authorized Agent until approval/rejection. Let Authorized agent handle rejection directly with submittee.
  • Cut check to submittee. Place in month when check is cut. In spreadsheet mark PURPLE.
  • When submitee receives check or check clears bank, mark GREEN.
  • END

Processing a Budget Amendment Request

  • All amendment requests given to the Treasurer will be vetted for completeness and forwarded with an opinion by the Treasurer to the Board at monthly Board Meeting.
  • Give an opinion when asked on all amendment requests done ad hoc in the Board Meeting.
  • Add each approved amendment to the Budget after the Board meeting, giving a new line item #

Budget Reporting

  • Add all paid bills to spreadsheet.
  • Add all income to spreadsheet.
  • Freeze for month and start new sheet for budget through end of next month in Spreadsheet.
  • Create a detailed Budget Report Spreadsheet and Budget Report Summary monthly. Archive in i3 Google Drive.
  • Publish that report to the monthly Board Meeting and an appropriate Members Meeting.

Yearly Budget Creation

  • Distrubute instructions to Coordinators and interested members on how to submit a budget item for submission.
  • Forecast the General and Special Events budget submission form historical trends.
  • Aggregate all budget submissions into a master spreadsheet and deliver that to the Board prior to the Annual Budget Meeting.
  • Preside over the Annual Budget Meeting in which the Board create the Budget for the new cycle.

Deposit Processing

Amazon and PayPal Payment

  • All CRM entry is entirely automated. Every Amazon Payment makes an entry in the PAYMENTS page credited to the Member Name. The database holds the links between Amazon Name, which is supplied to us for each Amazon Payment, and Member Name(the exact name of the member in the CRM). Those are many times not exactly the same, so a link between the two is held on the PAYMENTS/AMAZON/ADMINISTER page.
  • Move bulk money from PayPal account into Checking by signing on our PayPal account and "withdraw funds". Do so about once every 3-5 days and two days before the final day of the month. (this is currently automated so that PayPal automatically sends any funds over a set amount every week.)
  • Movement from Amazon is automated.
  • Credit is recognized on day it clears checking account, not time of withdraw from Amazon.
  • Deposits can be differentiated by source via looking at the transaction record. This allows deposits to be "split" in QuickBooks into their appropriate accounts.

Check and Cash Payment

  • Clean out the black box weekly.
  • Immediately update the CRM. Place an entry for the member in the PAYMENTS page with the correct amount.
  • Deposit in Bank (update the Deposit Record)
  • Check online next day to make sure deposit happens correctly.

CRM Processing by Treasurer

Billing Button

  • Press the Billing button after the 2nd day of the month, and the day before any outgoing dunning emails.
    • Do not use the button on the first of the month. This somehow breaks things.
  • The billing button updates all debits required by changes in the CRM from the last button push.

Clean Up Orphaned Links

  • Weekly - At PAYMENTS/AMAZON/ADMINISTER Resolve all Amazon/PayPal Names not linked to a Full Name. (This shouldn't be possible for the new CRM, but check anyway)



  • When a person ends their membership in i3, as indicated by change in Plan, email from the Membership Coordinator, or direct contact by the member, standard policy is to write off any balance remaining on their account. Do this by using the Payments tab to add a credit to the member's account with the reason "Exit Write Off".
    • Verify with the member that this is what they want, especially if they have more than a month's dues positive or negative. Some people need the money refunded (if positive) or are happy to pay any negative balance. When possible (and at the Treasurer's discretion), we like to go with the member's wishes.
    • Make sure any direct contact is copied to the Membership Coordinator.


  • Contact each member that is overdue on the 15th of each month and the 25th.
    • (The automatic process for this is currently broken, and emails have only been sent manually, and only occasionally. This should be addressed as part of the ongoing CRM upgrade.)


  • All contracts, statements, invoices and written correspondence (other than email) should be archived by the Treasurer in the i3 Google Drive in the appropriate folder.
  • It is preferred to use the for all correspondence, so that it is saved for future treasurers and general audit.
    • If necessary to use personal email, be sure to CC for archival purposes.

Regular, recurring expenses and how they are paid

There are several expenses that are incurred on a regular and recurring basis. The following table describes each one, including a description of how the expense is paid. "Check" means that a physical check is written and delivered to the creditor. Note that some bills are actual paper bills that get delivered to the space--check the mailbox regularly for these and other important things.

Payee (reason) Frequency Amount Mode of Payment
John Hutt (rent) Monthly See Lease, side A and B separate Check, payable to John Hutt, mailed from bank OR hand delivered to mailbox of John's landscaping business (next door to i3).
WOW (internet) Monthly $74.50 Automatic debit from checking.
Runco Waste (dumpster) Monthly Varies, around $80 Automatic charge to PayPal card
Consumers Energy (gas) Monthly Varies Automatic withdrawal from checking.
DTE Energy (electricity) Monthly Varies Automatic withdrawal from checking.
Westfield Group (insurance) Monthly $89.00 Automatic withdrawal from checking.
John Hutt (water) Quarterly Amount comes from John directly, either emailed or hand delivered copy of the bill Check, payable to John Hutt, Check mailed from bank OR hand-delivered to mailbox of John's landscaping business (next door to i3)

One-Time Bills

Sometimes, treasurer will be asked to make a payment for something. This could be for space supplies, equipment, rentals, etc. We can use the bank card, PayPal, or send a check/ACH/Wire from the bank.

  • Make sure any receipts are saved in the i3 Google Drive in the appropriate folder.
  • Note on ACH/Wire transfers:
    • Fees generally apply, so check before hitting send.
    • When entering routing information, DOUBLE CHECK that you are using the correct one for the type of transaction.
      • Wire transfers are usually same-day, and tend to have higher fees.
      • ACH (automated clearing house) transactions are usually next-day or longer, with lower fees the longer the delay.
      • Fees will not be refunded if the payment bounces because you used the wrong routing number! (ask me how I know)

Current things the Treasurer is dealing with

Reconciling dues

It has been discovered that, over the last many years, dues payments were made to the organization but were never applied to the member's account. Similarly, some (few) payments were recorded wrongly, giving more credit towards dues than was actually paid by the member. The treasurer is trying to track down all payments, especially ones that were sent unannounced via PayPal, cash, or check, and get them recorded properly.

$49/$59 Dues changeover

In the fall of 2019, the membership voted to change the dues paid monthly from $49 up to $59. Though it was supposed to happen immediately, it was loosely decided (board, treasurer, assorted members) that it would be optional for a couple months to let people get used to the idea and to get the CRM in order (A new system was being implemented, first by John C. and later by Norm W.) By December 1, 2019, all existing members were switched to the new plan in the CRM and asked to change their payment methods. Some did, many did not. As of Summer 2020, many members are over 1 month behind on their dues, putting them in danger of having their keys turned off. The Treasurer is working with the CRM team on getting all of these people notified. Also working with the Membership VP in order to determine which members are actually still active. As of Spring 2021, most members have switched their payments to the new CRM, MakiPi. Some few are still on the old system, including scholarships and members who haven't looked at their accounts in a long while. Those members who have not reactivated their keys are eligible to have some or all of their outstanding dues forgiven by request, at Treasurer discretion. (Board has approved this, but may revisit it should needs change).


  • Fix the PayPal zone donation buttons so the description is recognizable by QuickBooks. I think this can be done by changing which parameter the zone name gets put in, but I haven't had time to play with it
  • Finish up the Citizens/BoA changeover processes
    • Update: as of Spring 2021, BoA is fully set up, though PayPal is still having a hard time linking properly to it. For that, as well as the occasional deposit (donations mostly), we are keeping the Citizens account open for now. Expected timeline to close it is end of 2021.