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  • Unit Leaders as Commissioners

    Well there is a discussion on the topic of unit Leaders as Commissioners that got started on the New Member thread and I think it's more appropriate here.

    Now we have a new member who is both a SM and UC. Now one person is stating that unit leaders hould not be registered in any commissioner position at all and does give specific references to the prohibition:

    But in my experience trying to get commissioners is sometimes like pulling teeth, especially in someof the smaller districts and councils.

    I know that when I was in a metro council, we had a few, not many but a few, multiple registered commissioners.

    In my current district, we went over 3 years without a CS RT commissioner b/c we couldn't find anyone. And then it was only after I dropped being CSDC PD that I took it on and am rebuilding it.

    BS RT was the same, except shorter period. Also when I attended training, all of the RT commissioners were also serving as unit leaders.

    As for UCs, From what I've seen, it's about 50-50.

    So what are you all's expereinces?

  • #2
    We don't have a full slate of commissioners in our district, but we do have a fair number. So far as I know, none of them are real unit leaders. I think some of them continue to be registered as ASMs or Committee Members or whatever with their home unit, but at the district level I've only seen them function as commissioners.


    • #3
      Hi E92

      As an DC, I do not use any unit leader as commissioners (other than committee members, and not for their own units).
      What I am trying with unit leaders who want to do more is something I am calling "Unit Mentors", where I can pair a Cubmaster or Scoutmaster with a struggling unit to "mentor" that one unit. They do the same job as a commissioner, but only are working with one unit and no more. This way they are still able to focus on their primary job, their unit, and not that plus 3-4 other units. It is still in the beginning stages, but I am hoping to use this strategy until I can fully rebuild the Commissioner staff in my district. UVTS reporting is done by me or one of my ADC's for the mentors.
      For Roundtables, we have a Roundtable Chairperson for each instead of a Roundtable Commissioner. For Cubs it is an ADC, and for Boy Scouts it is an Assistant Scoutmaster.


      • #4
        I prefer unit leaders being UC's of other units, over members of the unit (in any position) being UC's for their own units..

        As stated in the original thread, there is concern over SM's unnaturally drawing from the cub packs they are UC's for, maybe intentionally or not but just by being the person the pack parents get familure with.. So a UC has to work hard to not have that happen, because they have to figure out how to wear two hats. As a UC they are working for the health and benefit of a different CO.

        Other then that, comming in with different perspectives and solving conflicts from a impartal point of view I think is impossible if you are already simply a member of the unit you are UC for.


        • #5
          We (bunch of Unit Commissioner types) we told by the Council that if our primary position was not registered with the District, the database (ScoutNet?) that calculates values for Commissioner-to-Units and Council dash-board statistics would be off.

          So now most register with the District or Council in their primary position, then multiple in the units.... but SM aren't used for Unit Commissioners, that I know. I'm one of several District registered and active ASM's in my sons Troop/Crew.


          • #6
            You use the people who can best do the job.

            I was registered as both a unit leader and a UC.

            The MAIN criteria to follow is to not assign a UC to a unit he/she is registered with. A UC should be impartial, and that can not happen if you also are a member of the unit.


            • #7

              I was told the same thing until I pointed out this faq,,
              which states that commissioners and district personnel are counted regardless if they are multiple registered.

              #13. COMMISSIONER SERVICE: Every person registered in an 80 position code is counted, even if that person holds a multiple registration.

              #16. DISTRICT LEADERSHIP: Every person registered with a 61, 62, 64, 75 or 79 position code is counted, even if that person holds a multiple registration.

              Since the faq did not require the primary registration, they could not require it either.
              After that, they backed off the primary requirement.


              • #8
                6 months or so ago someone posted about a cm whose son crossed into another troop. Old Cm became an asm with the troop and a uc for his old pack..........he proceeded to direct the webelos to his troop instead of the brother troop to the pack.......

                While it happens itis not a sound practice


                • #9
                  If the Commissioner staff is not following policies, how can they ask others to follow them? These policies are in place for a reason and should be adhered to. Setting up mentors seems like a way to get around the letter of the rule but violates the spirit of the rule.

                  Would you approve of a Troop modifying advancement guidelines because they were not convenient? What is the difference?


                  • #10
                    I will have agree with Johnponz on one thing and that is creating a "unit mentor" position is doing the same thing just calling it something different.

                    I am both a SM and a UC for a different troop. When asked to be a UC I said I did not think I could because of what is stated in the Fieldbook for Unit Service. But I was told by our DC and DE that is was OK as long as I was not the UC for my own unit. We asked the same question at an Area Commissioner conference and the regional people told us that the DC and DE were correct, so that is what I am going with.


                    • #11

                      Not the same thing at all, of course.

                      Unfortunately, many districts are critically short of the volunteers needed to fill positions. Frankly, I was never aware of that rule until this discussion blew up. District Commissioners who are short of help are violating a rule by making such appointments, but it's not the same thing at all as conniving to issue advancement awards that haven't been earned.

                      In fact, such people are taking on extra duties.

                      Within the past month I've offered a Cubmaster who hasn't been getting the support he needed from parents a formula for reinvigorating the pack's Committee meetings. It may be effective in getting the additional adult leaders needed by the pack including a new Cubmaster.

                      Sorry if that conflicts with my position as Cub Scout Roundtable Commissioner, but keeping a fine pack on track seems more important than that detail.


                      • #12
                        SP - I haven't seen anyone argue you can not be a RoundTable Commissioner and Unit Commissioner at the same time.. That is not a unit leader position, and no one said UC's can not hold two different positions. There just seems to be some rule around being a unit leader.


                        • #13
                          John et al,

                          FYI in regards to unit mentors. At one time the OA had a unit mentoring program that asked for Arrowmen to work with and mentor struggling units.


                          • #14
                            We have a lady for the mega troop and Pack crossed the Beltway is the UC for the unit in which she is a member......

                            the best part is she has been active in scouting for just a couple of years....

                            Of course they are untouchable.....bein wealthy and all.(This message has been edited by Basementdweller)


                            • #15
                              This is long but makes two seperate points:

                              Everyone has good reasons for breaking the rules that they want to break. Some SMs say Eagle is too easy now so they make their own requirements. Some MC believe that a 20 mile hike is too long so they shorten the requirements. They all justify these breaches by reasons that seem logical to them. This is kind of the end justifies the means argument, and leads to relativism (nothing is really right or wrong we can all decide for ourselves).

                              BSA has a good reason for this rule, and has the rule published all over the place. They use their strongest policy language, "must not." They could have used "should not" but chose "must not." Why is this? BSA expects (again it is in their publications) Commissioners to treat the position as their primary position. BSA knows that for Unit Leaders to do an effective job, they cannot have another BSA job that is primary. The Unit Leader job is the most important in Scouting as it has direct contact with our final customer (the youth member). This important Unit Leader positions should not be compromised by the Unit Leader doing another job. We are volunteers and as such do not have unlimited time to devote to Scouting. Having all of these positions, although noble in purpose, does not allow us to do a good job in any one position. BSA wants Unit Leaders to understand that their primary (only job) is to serve the final customer, and that responsibility should not be watered down by other positions.

                              This is especially true for the SM position. This position done correctly requires so much time and attention that I can not imagine a volunteer who could do the SM position as a secondary position since if you are a Commissioner by policy that position has to be primary. Let's not short change the Commissioner position by allowing people to do it who are not going to devote the time to do it properly.
                              (This message has been edited by johnponz)