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Corporate Finances

SCA is a non-profit corporation. Each year the fees and budgets are created to break even after sufficient reserves for improvements and operating losses are set aside. Any savings generated throughout the year can be used for more purchases (new mattresses, furniture, etc.) or building improvements.

All income is deposited into the SCA General Account and then allocated to other accounts during the year. This includes three other corporate accounts and two accounts for each house. The other corporate accounts are savings/investment accounts. Each house has a food account, which is used for all food and supplies, and a general house account, which is used for house maintenance, education, and discretionary purchases (covering social events and miscellany.)


All payments to SCA should be given to your House Treasurer. Checks are to be made payable to "Students' Cooperative Association" or "SCA". Payments are usually due one week after the first day of the term. You have the choice of paying in installments or in full. A late fine of $25.00 will be assessed if a member fails to submit a full installment payment or a properly completed promissory note to a Treasurer by the proscribed date. Those leaving the co-op with outstanding debts forfeit their deposit and may be placed in the hands of the an outside collections agency.


Parents and friends may not believe you when you tell them that you don't pay rent, but it's true. The word "rent" implies the use of property which belongs to someone else. In SCA you own the property, so you don't pay rent to anyone. Of course, even homeowners like yourself don't live for free. Your member fees go to pay your share of the mortgages, insurance, food costs, utilities, maintenance costs, and employee salary and office supplies. Estimated costs for the current fiscal year were set by the Board of Directors last spring (see Budgets)


One of the major issues for the co-op in the early spring is the budget. During winter term, it is the duty of the Financial Committee to formulate this document for Board approval. The budget is based on expenses from previous years. It can be changed to reflect decisions to spend more or less on such items as food, education, and social activities. All members are encouraged to take part in the formulation of the Financial Committee's recommendation to the Board.


In the co-op houses we are jointly and severally responsible for all charges; if one of our housemates does not pay fees, everyone else bears the burden of paying for that person's share of the mortgage, their food, etc. House members should ask the House Treasurers at every meeting who owes money. If a member does owe money then the co-op has the option of either loaning the money to that member (with the associated risks) or expelling that member. SCA has been hurt badly in the past by people who apparently did not see fees as an obligation that needed to be fulfilled. It is up to co-op members to protect themselves from having to pay for those members who don't want to pay for themselves.

After a debtor leaves, SCA will continue to try to collect from them using every legal method, which may include the courts and a collection agency. Collection agencies can make it difficult for a debtor to get credit far into the future. Debts are bad for everyone.