The physical facilities of Good Shepherd Lutheran Church are where we gather to hear the Good News of Jesus’ death and resurrection, celebrate the Lord’s Supper, share in fellowship and conduct mission outreach. These facilities serve as the “operations center” from which we implement our many initiatives and ministries that truly demonstrate that, “We are here for GOOD.”

While the COVID pandemic limited our access and use of the campus during 2020, the Property Committee continued its mission of ensuring that the entire campus of Good Shepherd Lutheran Church is maintained, attractive and welcoming to members and visitors alike. A special thank you to all who gave of their time, talent, and treasure during 2020 to carry out our ministry through the maintenance, care and enhancement of your church’s facilities and grounds.

The committee’s 2020 activities and accomplishments included:

  • Green Team: The Green Team was responsible for weekly mowing and maintaining the church lawn from May through October. A special thanks to everyone who helped with the lawn mowing during 2020.

  • White Team: Thank you to all who responded to my calls for help with clearing sidewalks following each snow event. Team members ensured that church sidewalks were cleared of snow and ice relatively soon after each event. We continue our snow plowing contract with Dave Cichocki for plowing the parking lots with contract costs based on a per snow event. His fees for snow removal have been unchanged for several years and we thank him for his continued services to our campus.

  • Heating and Air Conditioning (Furnaces): A thank you to Brian and Michelle Legois through their business, Professional Heating and Air Conditioning, for maintaining the furnaces and air conditioning units in the facility. Their prompt response to problems during the past year and effecting necessary repairs is especially appreciated.

- Pending HVAC issue: The heating, ventilation and air conditioning in the Sanctuary is maintained by two roof-top HVAC units. The west HVAC unit has been non-functioning for several months and needs to be replaced. With the pandemic preventing use of the Sanctuary, there has been no need to expedite the replacement. This is allowing the Property Committee to work with the Legois’ in figuring out the best time and approach to its replacement. Meanwhile, the remaining (functioning) HVAC unit on the east side of the Sanctuary is adequate to heat and cool the Sanctuary until we return to normal use of the building.

  • Plumbing issues: Again, thank you to Ron Kuhn for completing the required inspection of our plumbing system and addressing the plumbing related problems that came up during the year.

  • Janitorial Services: We continue to contract with Lee and Robin Holtz for cleaning and janitorial services. With the facility being closed for most of 2020, we were able to reduce the amount of weekly cleaning.

  • Garden beds: Again, thank you to Jon and Nancy DeCleene for the awesome job they continue to do with maintaining and caring for the plants and garden beds that beautify the areas around the church building. In particular, they took the lead with new plantings (including covering purchase costs), mulching and landscaping to beautify the areas in front of the office and Education Center. It looks beautiful.

  • Landscaping: There always seems to be landscape maintenance issues or a new project to be completed with 2020 being no exception. Thank you to all the volunteers who helped with the following projects:

· Restoration of the lawn area in front of the Education Center was completed in late summer with soil preparation, seeding and fertilizing.

- The two horseshoe-shaped garden beds and associated shrubbery was removed to the north of the Sanctuary and the area seeded to grass. This eliminates a major maintenance challenge with annual (or more frequent) trimming the bushes, weeding and mulching the two areas. Several compliments have been received from members that they like the “new” look of this part of the campus.

· It was discovered that there was a large quantity of buckthorn (an undesirable invasive species) growing in the light barrier along the east side of the campus. A thank you to the scouts of Troop 1113 (St. John the Baptist) who assisted with cutting and hauling the buckthorn away in October as a community service project. In addition to cutting the individual plants, the resulting stumps were painted with an herbicide to prevent them from re-sprouting. It is a difficult plant to get under control and may take a couple of years of repeated cutting, removal and herbicide treatments.

  • Computer maintenance and WiFi upgrade: A thank you to Blake Felton for his continued help with maintaining the computers and servers. In addition, Blake and Tom Felton upgraded the WiFi system in the building to provide access to the computer system in the Narthex and Sanctuary (this involved a lot of time and some difficult work running cable through the ceiling of the Narthex).

  • Renewing For Our Future (RFOF): There is approximately $18,700 remaining in the RFOF account which is dedicated to the congregation’s approved RFOF projects. Due to the circumstances surrounding the pandemic, the Property Committee has put the remaining RFOF projects on hold. Once we can return to more normal use of the facilities, the Property Committee plans on moving forward with the following two approved projects;

- Upgrading the Narthex entrance and vestibule doors and the doors to the Narthex bathrooms to make them handicap accessible.

- Renovation of the office bathrooms.

Tom Hansen, Property Committee

The Property Committee shall be comprised of the congregation vice president, the property management coordinator, technology support representative, and as many members of the congregation as the committee chooses. Each year the committee shall elect a chairperson and a recorder from its membership. The vice president will report from the Congregation Council any action that this committee needs to take, and report to the Congregation Council on behalf of this committee. The committee shall meet regularly.

The responsibilities and duties of the Property Committee include, but are not limited to:

1. Establish, with Congregation Council approval, policies regarding building and grounds usage and decorating.

2. Prepare and follow a preventative maintenance schedule for the buildings and grounds.

3. Make regular inspection of the buildings and grounds and recommend needed repairs, replacement and improvements including space allocations and room layouts.

4. Establish, with Congregation Council approval, policies regarding procurement, usage, and disposal of church property and equipment.

5. Prepare and update annually an inventory of church property and equipment, indicating acquisition date and approximate value of each item, and project and recommend necessary repairs and replacement.

6. Carry out all resolutions of the Congregation Council and/or Congregation on purchases, repairs, and replacement of church property and equipment.

7. Review the property insurance coverage annually and make recommendations to the Congregation Council regarding any changes in coverage.

8. Determine needs and engage adequate custodial services, with Congregation Council approval. Meet periodically with the custodian to discuss care of buildings, special needs and problems relating to custodial services, remuneration, etc.

9. Negotiate contracts with vendors, for Congregation Council approval, for equipment maintenance (HVAC system, organ, office machines, etc.); building maintenance (roof repair, lighting/electrical, plumbing, etc.); grounds maintenance (snow removal, parking lots, turf/landscape maintenance, etc.); and other property management services (garbage and recyclables pick-up, sprinkler inspection, telephone/internet service, etc.).

10. Make and issue keys. Maintain a list of issued keys and review annually.

11. Monitor the buildings and grounds for hazards (fire, slip/fall, electrical, etc.).

12. Enlist and supervise work crews for building and grounds maintenance (lawn mowing, snow removal, special repairs, improvements, cleaning, painting, decorating, landscaping, etc.).

13. Prepare and submit a budget request to the Executive Committee for anticipated property expenses annually.

14. Oversee disbursement of the annual Property Committee budget.