Bethel Council hears from Burke Trust board

Board member of the Burke Trust Frank Manning recently spoke with the Bethel Village Council, presenting them with an update on the trust that was formed more than four decades ago to support philanthropic efforts in the village.

Created through the generosity of Edmund Burke, the fund has been managed over the years to create a lasting source of funding for programs such as scholarships for local students. Manning said that, despite some problems with the stock market, the fund has shown growth lately.

“As you will see, we did lose a little in the last quarter, but we have come back,” said Manning. “At our best, we were at $1,386,910.41 at our highest, and at the end of this month, we are at $1,492,178.80, which gives us a net gain of over $100,000, including that loss. Even though we took a beating when the market sort of crashed, being conservative didn’t turn out to be such a bad idea. This trust started with a half million dollars, and I’ve been told that we’ve given over a million dollars that’s now valued at a million and a half. We’ve been criticized by investors that say we’re too conservative. That’s our job, we’re conservators, not investors.”

Two members of the Burke Trust board were recently reinstated for another term. Manning requested during the meeting that some changes be made to the language of the rules governing the way the trust is used to further safeguard it. Typically, money is only spent from interest earned, which has helped to continue the growth of the fund.