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Act 33, 2011 (XXXIII) – Act anent Ministers’ Expenses. 25th May 2011.

The General Assembly re-enact the regulations relating to Ministers’ Expenses as follows:

1. The General Assembly ordain that legitimate expenses incurred by ministers or lay preachers in the course of their duties shall be reimbursed, or met directly where appropriate, by their congregations. Such expenses shall include council tax, relevant telephone expenses, communion expenses, hospitality, travel, a proportion of heat and light and removal expenses. Payment of such expenses shall not be regarded as a supplement.

2. The minimum rate at which ministers’ car expenses shall be met is 30p per mile for the first 10,000 miles in any tax year. Expenses for mileage in excess of 10,000 miles shall be met at the rate of 25p per mile. These rates shall be reviewed on an annual basis by the Finance Sub-Committee of the Board of Trustees, in consultation with the Personnel Committee. A congregation may pay expenses at a higher rate if they so desire but any such higher rate should not exceed the approved rates set by HMRC. Expenses for travel on motor cycles or bicycles shall be met at the prevailing rates set by HMRC.

3. In all congregations the agreement regarding reimbursement of ministers’ expenses should be reviewed annually.

4. Claims for reimbursement of expenses should be made on a regular basis and must be submitted on the claim form approved for use by the Finance Sub-Committee of the Board of Trustees. All expenses claimed must relate to actual expenses incurred and must be backed by receipts. In the case of mileage expenses, claims must detail actual journeys undertaken.

5. In the case of a vacant Congregation, the Interim Moderator shall have refunded to him by the Congregation, all travelling and other expenses incurred by him in discharging such duties on behalf of the Congregation as would normally fall to be undertaken by the minister if the charge were settled.

6. Expenses incurred in respect of travel to church courts or committees shall be met by the Presbytery or Committee concerned.

7. Cash supplements in addition to payment of expenses shall only be allowable by congregations meeting all required levies payable under the prevailing remittance system. In no case shall cash supplements exceed 50 per cent of the Equal Dividend.

8. The General Assembly repeal Act XV, 1983, Act XXIII, 2005 and Act X, 2008.