The duties appertaining to the office of Treasurer, though essentially the same in all institutions, vary, in detail, according to the character and purposes of the Society. In some they will necessarily be more extended and laborious than in others. To avoid difficulty and misunderstanding, every duty expected of this officer should be specifically laid down in the by-laws.
1. The Treasurer should be a man of business habits, accustomed to accounts, punctual and correct in his own dealings, and prompt and energetic in attending to the duties of his office. The slightest dereliction in this department produces doubt and mistrust, and is most pernicious to the interests of the institution; and even a loose and careless mode of keeping accounts, is often almost as great a fault as positive dishonesty.
2. The Treasurer is held responsible for all monies paid to him on account of the Society. He should charge himself, in a book kept for the purpose, with all monies so received, carefully noting the date, and the source whence they are derived. He is also entrusted with the custody of books, important documents and papers, contracts, deeds, mortgages, etc, which he should carefully preserve, allowing no one to remove them from his possession, without a formal order from the Society.
3. All payments made by the Treasurer, should be under a resolution of the Society, or on a requisition signed by the President and Secretary. These resolutions and requisitions, together with his receipts for monies paid, are his vouchers, which he will file among his papers, and hand to the auditors, when his accounts are to be examined. The Treasurer should be careful to take receipts for all monies by him paid out, and also to require that the order for the money be endorsed by the person receiving it.
4. The number and form of the Treasurer's books will depend upon the nature and extent of his duties. In many Societies it is necessary to open a ledger account with every member; - such is the case in Beneficial Societies, where money is paid in regularly by each member, at short periods.
5. The duty of collecting in the revenues of the Society usually rests with the Treasurer, although in many instances he is instructed to employ a collector for the purpose, at a per centum allowance. Sometimes a collecting committee is appointed by the meeting.
6. The Treasurer should strenuously endeavour to keep his books well posted up, so as to be able to exhibit, at any and every meeting, a succinct account of the state of the treasury. This is often a matter of the highest importance, and the information may frequently materially influence the action of a meeting.
7 As often as the by-laws require, the Treasurer should have his books and papers ready for the examination of the auditors, and when the accounts are gone over, the result should be reported to the Society by the auditors, and entered on the Secretary's minutes. In many cases the certificate of the auditors is written in the Treasurer's books. From the date of settlement the Treasurer, of course, commences a new account.
8. In many Societies the Treasurer is required to give bond for the faithful performance of his duties. These bonds should be deposited with the President. They should be renewed at every successive election, unless otherwise ordered by the Society.
9. At the expiration of his term of office, the Treasurer should carefully settle up his books and accounts, and deliver over all the books, papers, documents, funds and other property belonging to the Society, to his successor in office, without unnecessary delay or hinderance. Neglect or inattention to this duty, under any pretence, is justly regarded as a serious breach of propriety.