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Church Property Resources
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The Office of the Bishop is here to help you with property issues. For support, please contact Chief Financial Officer Kirby Smith, 619-481-5453.

Church buildings have been entrusted to us by those who came before us and require care and attention as we seek to honor them and all they represent. We hope the information here is helpful as you care for the structures entrusted to you.

We hope the guidebook linked below is helpful. It contains: diocesan procedures for receiving approval to dispose of or encumber property, request form, facility use policy, compensation for use of church facilities including suggested fees, exclusive use lease, and more. If you have questions about this guidebook, please contact Kirby Smith.

Electrical Safety

Prevent electrical fires by following some common sense rules:

  • If a fuse blows or a circuit breaker trips frequently, this is an indication that the circuit is overloaded. Reduce the number of appliances making demands on that circuit
  • A fuse should be replaced only with one of the same ampere rating.
  • Appliance cords and extension cords should be replaced rather than repaired if the cord is frayed or brittle.
  • Don’t nail or staple appliance cords and extension cords to walls, or lay them under carpeting.
  • Make certain that appliance cords and extension cords are not knotted. Knots may cause the wires to break.
  • For appliances requiring a great deal of electricity (irons, toasters, air conditioners, etc.) do not use regular extension cords. Use special cords with 14-gauge or 16-gauge wires.
  • We recommend you have a periodic inspection by a licensed electrician of the entire electrical system.

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Reducing Liability During Construction

Here are some tips on how to reduce your liability as a property owner.

  • Never allow a contractor to work on your property without a contract. The contract should contain a hold harmless agreement that makes the contractor responsible for the defense and any judgment in the event of a lawsuit. In addition, the contract should state that it is the responsibility of the contractor to maintain a safe workspace.
  • Make sure you have solid lease agreements with your tenants. This should include a hold harmless agreement. Make sure you also maintain a current certificate of insurance from your tenant. The certificate should name you and/or the building manager as an additional insured on the tenant’s policy.
  • Before work begins, the contractor should provide the building owner or property manager with certificates of insurance for general liability and worker’s compensation. The certificates should name the building owner and/or building manager as an additional insured on the contractor’s policy. Minimum acceptable limits on the general liability policy should be $1,000,000.
  • All equipment needed to complete the repair and/or improvement is the responsibility of the contractor. Building owners should never loan, or allow a contractor to use, their ladders or tools.
  • As the building owner, you should avoid supervising any work that you hired a contractor to perform. Offering direction to an employee of the contractor could nullify the hold harmless provision of the contract you entered into with the contractor.

These practices won’t ensure that you will not be sued or held liable for damages. They will only help improve your chances of avoiding lawsuits and potential damage awards. As with any other legal document, you should consult with your own attorney for specific legal advice and contract language.


<h2>Providing for Disabilities</h2>
What will enable people with disabilities to participate fully in your community? Learn about the special needs of people with disabilities in these pages. Some accommodations, such as an accessible bathroom or elevator, are costly, but many, such as higher wattage light bulbs or large-print bulletins, have a minimal price tag. View the list of resources for information, advice and mentoring.

Disabilities FAQ


Vision Limited and Blind Resources

Large Print Materials and Books in Braille
Forward Movement Publications
412 Sycamore Street
Cincinnati OH 45202-4195
Forward Day by Day in large print
Other large print materials – Call Forward Publications for information.
Book of Common Prayer in Braille – 13 volumes
Forward Day by Day in Braille
(513) 721-6659 or (800) 543-1813
(513) 421-0315
Website

Bibles for the Blind and Visually Handicapped
3408 Rosehill Road
Terre Haute IN 47805
812-466-4899
812-466-0529
Website

Lighthouse International Center
111 E. 59th Street
New York, NY 10022
(800) 334-5497 or (212) 821-9200
Website
Email

American Foundation for the Blind (AFB)
AFB Headquarters
11 Penn Plaza
New York NY 10001
(212) 502-7600
(212) 502-7777
AFB Information Center (800) 232-5463
Website
Email

QuitDay.org
Excellent guide for quitting smoking with benefits for eye health
Website

Unite for Sight
Works to eliminate preventable blindness
Website

Affordable Colleges Online
How colleges help visually impaired students succeed
Website


Deaf Resources

Deaf Community Services of San Diego
3930 Fourth Avenue
San Diego, CA 92103
Website

Deaf Seniors Foundation of Palm Springs
P.O. Box 1329
Palm Springs, CA 92263-1329
Website

California Association of the Deaf
Deaf Californians empowered with preserved American Sign Language, productive life, and ensured equal opportunities.
Facebook Page

Deaf Bilingual Coalition
Promotes the basic human right of all deaf babies and children to have access to language and cognitive development through American Sign Language.
Website

American Sign Language Interpreters
Interpreter services nationwide. Receive a quote online.
Website


Steps to Accessibility

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