The Phoenix Preacher reveals the annual (and not public) budget of an unnamed Calvary Chapel.
The figures are pretty staggering. The pastor's annual salary is 320K, plus 30K annual vacation allowance, a 50K annual retirement contribution, $550 monthly auto allowance, a 750K life insurance policy, plus stuff like auto maintenance, cell phones, book royalties, etc. The weekly church attendence is about 3,000 (Calvary Chapel's do not have church membership) and they have substantial revenues.
What a church pays its pastor is that church's business. The problem is the budget is not approved by the church--the members do not even see an annual budget, nor do the people know what the pastor is being paid. The budget was approved by a "board" of the pastor's choosing (personal friends who live far away, and who conduct church business meetings over the phone, and do things like approve budgets, etc.)
Caveat emptor! If you go to a church like this, and don't vote with your feet, well then, you get exactly that for which you ask.
Since many pastors are tempted to so the same (if they could), God places us in a biblical (Presbyterian) form of church government so that the pastors are accountable to the elders (consistory or session) for their life and doctrine, and so that all things are done decently and in good (i.e., biblical) order.
Meanwhile, like most Reformed and Presbyterian churches, Christ Reformed Church will hold an annual congregational meeting (ironically, ours is this coming Sunday). We will elect elders and deacons from among the congregation, men who do things like prepare an annual budget (including my annual salary and benefits) which is, in turn, presented to the congregation for their approval. This is a very public activity conducted by the church and its members.
If you are in a church where the "Moses Model" rules the day, don't be surprised by what happens in the shadows. Ask that all things be done in the open, so that there are no secret budgets or "board members" who are not members of the church. There is a reason why Presbyterian and Reformed church government has well-defined church orders (constitutions) and well-tested rules of procedure. We are all sinners who need checks and balances, pastors included.
Under the "Moses Model," pastors and their boards operate in the dark and do as they please--including the passing of budgets like the one described above.