The 2001/2002 Financial year for SGAI has been 'standard' and similar to each of the past few years. The group has a significant financial reserve which provides a solid basis for the group's activities such as the evening meetings and Expert Update. However, membership is still low relative to past years and the cost of travel for committee meetings exceeds our membership income. When our annual ESXX conference makes a surplus, this covers the cost of the evening meetings and Expert Update as well as part of the committee costs. ES2001 made a very slight surplus, less than in previous years. The result is that the group made a net loss of about £1000 for FY2001/02. Currently ES2002 is forecast to make an adequate surplus to cover the costs of the group's committee meetings, evening meetings and Expert Update, and a modest surplus is forecast for the FY 2002/03.
We have had a major problem with the BCS and the treatment of VAT at the conclusion of the FY 2001/02. The BCS ignored our information on reclaimable VAT and took payment from our reserves of the VAT we had collected. This was only discovered when we got our Gold Account statement after the end of the financial year. We are working with the BCS finance office to submit a corrected claim going back several years so that we get appropriate credit for out VAT offsets. Those that have known the group for many years will recall major problems of getting VAT offset many years ago. I am confident this will get resolved, as the VAT rules permit us to make claims as far back at 1996.
For the IJCAI-05 conference, we have received a £5000 grant and a £5000 interest free loan from Lothian and Edinburgh Enterprise Limited to provide an initial cash float for the event.