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  2. RememberSchiff

    wilderness first aid class question

    I like @mashmaster borrowing suggestion. Start with your scout's personal safety - gloves, glasses, mask, headlamp.. in kit. Don't worry if you don't have "this" or "that", a WFA class will teach what "this" and "that" you should carry and if you don't, how to improvise from what you do have. For example, using a belt as a tourniquet. Definitely pay attention to other bleed stop (e.g QuikClot, Woundstop) tools. I have bought supplies from Chinook who have been helpful. https://www.chinookmed.com/ My $0.01
  3. Consider the yurt a cabin not a tent. Whole troops with a full range of ages share cabins all the time. For the adults, do whatever separation makes everybody most comfortable, be it hanging tarps or the lone male sleeping in his truck.
  4. T2Eagle

    Can a scout control use of raised funds?

    Does a scout have any say? Only so far as the troop follows his suggestion. But there's no reason in this story to think the scout on his own took some of the proceeds of his sales and gave or ordered the giving of those funds to anyone else. This is a news story that has two facts: 1) a scout sold $15k popcorn, 2) some portion of the money raised from those sales was used to help a local nursing home. There is a causative relation between the two facts: in order for there to be money to give to the nursing home there had to be a sale of popcorn. There's nothing inaccurate about the story as told, but in a local feel good news item of less than two minutes duration there's no time and no reason to walk through the obvious chain of events: 1) Scout sold $15k popcorn, 2) after paying council troop retainss $5k from those sales, 3) troop decides by whatever process they used (presumably including some input from scout and his family) to pass some of that largess on to nursing home. As a practical matter there's no other way for this to work. Unless the scout only accepted cash, or cash plus checks made out to him personally, the money from the sales all has to pass through the troop's accounts, and ultimately it's the troop writing whatever check or other form the donation took. It's just a pleasant little story to fill up one third of the time between two commercials on the local news broadcast and nothing more. Don't over think it.
  5. Today
  6. I've seen an abusive situation happen in a large tent full of same-age (11 year old) Scouts, but then again, we were able to quickly put a stop to it and the offender was immediately sent home from the event and then barred from Scouting. That might have been more challenging in a 2-person tent where it was one kid's word against the other's. I feel quite comfortable with our girls sharing a yurt. I just wanted an outside pair of eyes on the G2SS rules to make sure I wasn't conveniently interpreting it to suit my unit's situation. Stringing a hammock outside (without rain and wind protection) would not be an option for a February campout on the Oregon coast, but it's definitely something to keep in mind for other outings.
  7. Lean on the "modifications may be made" bit. When we had one female adult with a troop in one cabin, she'd have a bunk with a tarp hung for privacy ... adults on one wall, boys on the opposite wall. (I actually, slung my hammock outside that night, and that's what I'd likely do if I were the sole male in this situation.) All the youth will be fine in their yurt. The tenting scenario applies to the more typical situation where you have 2-man or 3-man tents. Basically, abusive situations seem to be more likely when pairs or triples are too far apart in age. That said, be prepared with a spare tent.
  8. TAHAWK

    Can a scout control use of raised funds?

    From IRS.GOV 01/25/2020: "INTERNAL REVENUE SERVICE Number: INFO 2002-0041 Release Date: 3/29/2002 February 15, 2002 UIL: 501.03-08 501.33-00 [REDACTED] xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx Re: xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx Dear Mr. xxxxxx: We received your recent letter requesting information regarding a program you are considering adopting within your xxxxx Scout Pack. You indicate that your Pack is xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx tax exempt under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. One of the purposes of the Scouting program is to instill self-reliance ixxxxxxxxxx. You indicate that one way of doing this is to allow the xxxxxx to earn their own way as opposed to depending on others, including their parents, to fund their individual scouting participation. To further this self-reliance, you are proposing to allow the xxxxxx in your Pack to raise monies through fundraising activities and to designate the use of some of these funds to pay for personal expenses. These expenses would include 1) Scouting fees such as organization dues and camp registration fees; 2) items used exclusively for Scouting such as uniforms and Scouting books; and 3) items used primarily for Scouting such as camping equipment. Using the money raised in various fundraising activities to further the Scouting program for all of the xxxxxx in your Pack is in accordance with your exempt purposes xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx. In this regard, the Pack could use the funds (all or a percentage) it raises to reduce or eliminate dues and various registration fees, purchase uniforms and Scouting books and purchase camping equipment. The Pack could also use its funds to provide assistance to individual Scouts in cases of financial hardship. The distribution method you are proposing - the creation of a reserve fund within the Pack where a portion of the money that an individual Scout raises during a fundraising 2 event is reserved for xxx use alone, is a troublesome one. Earmarked accounts may not be compatible with continued tax exemption. Such a decision cannot be made without considering all of the facts and circumstances. Accordingly, we are not ruling definitively at this time. We hope the following general discussion will be helpful. Section 501(c)(3) of the Code provides, in part, an exemption to the federal income tax for organizations organized and operated exclusively for educational, charitable or other exempt purposes. Under the Income Tax Regulations, an organization will be considered operated exclusively for exempt purposes if it engages primarily in activities which accomplish those purposes. If more than an insubstantial part of an organization's activities do not further its exempt purposes, it will not be considered operated exclusively for exempt purposes. In addition, an exempt organization must serve a public rather than a private interest. Thus, an organization must establish that it is not organized or operated for the benefit of private interests, such as designated individuals. The private benefit prohibition is broad and includes the individual Scouts and their parents. The amount of private benefit that will be permitted depends on the magnitude of that benefit in relation to the public benefit derived from the organization's activities and whether that private benefit is necessary for the organization to achieve its exempt purposes. In considering whether a private benefit, such as earmarked accounts for the personal benefit of individual Scouts, is substantial enough to jeopardize your exemption, one must examine all of the facts and circumstances. In relation to the public benefit inherent in the Scouting program, this may be a small private benefit. Whether the private benefit to the individual Scouts is necessary to achieve the goals of the Scouting program, however, is not clear. We discussed a similar question in regard to athletic booster clubs that earmarked a portion of their fundraising proceeds to be shared only by the members who participated in the fundraiser in the 1993 CPE text (a copy is attached for your convenience). In the hypothetical addressed in the Article (Example one on page 5), we determined that the resulting private benefit to the individual members was substantial and negated the charitable intent of the organization precluding exemption under section 501(c)(3) of the Code. You have asked whether issuing a Form 1099 for each Scout receiving such benefits would negate the private benefit question. In this case, you would treat all income the Scout receives through the earmarked account as compensation for tax purposes. An exempt organization can, of course, pay reasonable compensation for services. Treating the receipts as income to the individual, however, may raise additional issues for the Pack. In particular, the fundraising activity may, if conducted by paid labor rather than volunteers, be characterized as unrelated business income taxable under section 3 511 of the Code. You may wish, therefore, to consider whether creating a possible tax liability for both the individual Scouts and the Pack is appropriate under the circumstances. This letter is advisory only and has no binding effect on the Internal Revenue Service. The information provided here cannot be relied upon as a ruling on the matters discussed. If you have any questions regarding this discussion or we can be of further assistance, please feel free to call me at 202-283-8926 or Ms. xxxxxxxxxxxxx at xxxxxxxxxxxx. Sincerely, /s/ Gerald V. Sack Gerald V. Sack Manager, Exempt Organizations Technical Group 4"
  9. Our young ladies have decided to reserve 2 yurts at a state campground for a "cabin camping" weekend next month. Each yurt holds 8 people. The intention is to have the youth in one yurt and the adults in the other (we only have 8 youth planning to go; it's a new, small female unit). How would you interpret this rule to apply here? We'll need to get creative for the male and female adult issue (probably involving the addition of an RV or something, and one male leader has offered to just sleep alone in his truck), so I'm confident we'll find a way to handle that. But I am not entirely sure how to deal with the 2-year thing for the youth yurt. Do we follow a tent rule because no specific exception is made for lodging, or does that rule not apply because it's not mentioned for lodging? The only thing I can think of to get around it is to have our 2 or 3 oldest Scouts pitch a tent outside the yurt or something. Our Scouts are all fairly closely clustered from 11-13 years old, but we have at least one who hasn't turned 11 yet (recent crossover), and a couple of the 13 year olds are getting pretty close to 14. So... OK in a large group because of the limitations of the lodgings? Or pull out the 13 year olds and tell them they have to tent it?
  10. TAHAWK

    Can a scout control use of raised funds?

    BSA policy is, for BSA especially, pretty clear, as is the policy barring troop neckerchiefs not approved by council and not of identical size and triangle shape as official BSA-sold neckerchiefs. Perhaps fewer rules, and those reasonable and enforced, would make more sense for BSA and IRS. The IRS has had very drastic funding cuts over the last seven years and is relying on obsolete computers and software more and more. IRS is also the second most unpopular federal agency with voters - only VA gets worse marks, and VA is perceived as killing veterans. INDIVIDUAL SCOUT ACCOUNTS AND FUNDRAISING BY BSA UNITS - Frequently Asked Questions (2/11/2014) "Are individual Scout accounts permitted? Yes. These accounts are permitted when funded by the youth member through savings, a portion of a weekly allowance, and chores around the home and neighborhood. The youth member’s family may contribute, but no charitable deduction is allowed. What is private benefit, and why is it not allowed? Private benefit is when funds raised in the name of Scouting or another charity are directly allocated to the youth member or family doing the fundraising. Funds raised in the name of Scouting should benefit the entire unit. The tax laws do not permit private benefit, with the exception of an “insubstantial” benefit. How is an “insubstantial” benefit defined? The IRS has classified 30 percent of the money raised as “substantial,” and less than 2 percent as “insubstantial.” The burden of proof that the benefit is “insubstantial” is on the organization. Are incentives allowed for participation in fundraising or sales? The IRS has not ruled on this matter, but the “insubstantial” benefit restriction would apply. Can Scouting units use funds to assist youth members who have a financial need? The unit can allocate funds based on financial need, and may consider factors such as participation in the unit, advancement, and Scout spirit. Are there penalties for private benefit or other tax issues? Private benefit may result in the loss of tax-exempt status for the chartering organization, or the local council. Allocating funds raised in the name of Scouting directly to a youth member could result in self-employment tax liability. Questions? Please contact your local council. Thanks for all that you do." For what it's worth, recalling that square troop neckerchiefs and distinctive patrol neckerchiefs are a definite "no-no": https://blog.scoutingmagazine.org/2014/12/03/individual-scout-accounts/ ("What’s definitely not OK. Money raised in the name of Scouting that isn’t used for Scouting is a definite no-no.") 😢
  11. So, news outlets are notoriously lazy about details. It didn't actually say that $1200 cash was donated to the senior center. It vaguely "went to" the senior center. If the Scouts in the unit decided to spend $1200 on an event that they made possible for the Senior Center, I don't see a single issue for that. That's not raising money for another organization, that's using money they've raised for their unit to do a good turn for a neighbor. I don't think the distinction between those two things is all that blurry (maybe it can be sometimes). We don't really know exactly what happened. Sure, the article makes it sound like donated money, but I don't see a direct quote from anybody stating it was donated money. Just that it was used for the benefit of the seniors. I've read too many news articles about issues I had first-hand knowledge about to use anything written in a news article as evidence of wrongdoing.
  12. qwazse

    Can a scout control use of raised funds?

    Of course that's not enough said! I'd have this conversation with the scout: Me [in my sternest stop-wasting-matches voice]: Scout, did some of my money that I spent on your popcorn actually go to some old folks so they could party up at Christmas? Scout: Sir, yes sir. It did. But that was before strangers on the internet accused me for misappropriation ... Me: Keep it up. And double my order for next year.
  13. qwazse

    Can a scout control use of raised funds?

    In this town, there's a special word for such armchair crumudgeons, I won't waste it here. The day that scouting serves only scouts is the day I turn in my Fleur-de-lis. 'Nuff said.
  14. Son #1 [sometime between 4th and 6th grade while we were walking to see fireworks]: Why did you make us read the whole Declaration of Independence before we could have dessert? Me: Well, it is Independence Day. Son #1: But we read this stuff in school. Me: So, did you read it in school this year? Son #1: No. Me: I like when you answer your own question.
  15. jjlash

    Leadership Challenge

    Thanks for all the comments - this has gone a wee bit off topic.... There is still a bunch about the Summit session that I dont know yet, but I see in the schedule that participants get to visit the Consol Energy Bridge, the Sustainability Treehouse and get to ride the Big Zip.
  16. Eagle94-A1

    Citizenship Test and Citizenship in Nation MB

    Don't know about the US Citizenship test, but when I had a group of 5 HS aged Scouts who had Civics already and a 5th grade homeschooled Webelos, NONE of the HS students could talk to me about the various components of the Cit Nat MB, except their favorite monument in DC, which we did the day before. The 5th grader on the other the other hand, did know the answers and could talk about them.
  17. walk in the woods

    Can a scout control use of raised funds?

    Hmmm. I seem to recall my council allowing scouts to sell surplus popcorn from the annual campaign to fund summer camp, jambo, or eagle projects.
  18. When I took it we didn't open any of the supplys in my kit but we did discuss expeiration date and went through the kit and noted what was expired and what could be added to be better prepared. Our troop pays for this kind of training scout or adult and the troop should provide their first aid kit so it can be checked also. Wilderness first aid is one of the requirements for National Outdoor Award Medal so he should take a look at this to see if its something he could earn.
  19. MattR

    Power of a smile

    I'm sitting in Rwanda right now. I've been in Africa for 2 weeks. Some Safari but mostly I've been in poor areas. Over half the population makes less than $1.50 a day. That said, most people are quick to smile. I wave and smile at people and nearly everyone just lights up with a smile and waves back. In a way, it's part of their culture. But I've found it to be more than that. Some people I wave to are clearly down. Its not so much that they have little money but that they have little dignity. Many Rwandan children have been abandoned by their parents and are not in loving homes. Essentially, they are a burden on some other relative and they know it. Many parents are distraught over having to abandon their children. So what happens when someone smiles at these people? A smile says I'm happy to see you. That tiny bit of dignity can mean so much to someone that is down. I would look at adults, look right at their eyes, so they knew I was thinking of them, and I simply smiled and waved. Most would break out with a huge smile. It's as if I just affirmed that they were important. All of these interactions and I don't speak Rwandan. So when you see someone clearly having a bad day, try smiling at them. Let them know you're thinking of them. That's all a part of being cheerful.
  20. Benadryl for allergic reactions (says the guy allergic to bees).
  21. While I like your idea I doubt it would happen. The MB is dumbed down for a 12 year old to pass. Most high school students sleep through it. I think most high school students that I know would have no problem with passing the cit test. But that is a higher than average group.
  22. T2Eagle

    Leadership Challenge

    I enjoy singing, people near me may not enjoy that as much, but my WB experience was definitely on the misused end of the spectrum.
  23. There is a lot of US History on the Citizenship test. I am not sure that is the aim of Citizenship in the Nation. I would be interested in the non-history questions. I also wonder about the methodology of this survey as there doesn't seem to be any information on how the questions were selected. The actual test randomly selects 10 questions from a bank of 100. For example, the actual test only asks you to name 3 of the original 13 colonies. There is also is a significant difference between someone who studies for that test and one who doesn't. I wonder what the pass rate would be if you allowed people to review the 100 questions for only 1 hr then asked them the same questions. If you are interested, here is the current list of 100 questions the test comes from - https://www.uscis.gov/sites/default/files/USCIS/Office of Citizenship/Citizenship Resource Center Site/Publications/100q.pdf The questions do not change without notice though the answers might (who is president for example).
  24. I wonder if we may seriously want to consider adding or modifying requirements for Citizenship in the Nation to include actually pass the Citizenship Test for those trying to become citizens; pass at or above the same standard an immigrant needs? Review this: as leaders and mentors in general, we should have concerns. Just the way I see it. https://woodrow.org/news/national-survey-finds-just-1-in-3-americans-would-pass-citizenship-test/?fbclid=IwAR0xsWFiD5opdYNBsi8mVkJTc_hogDjCVQFZhBMCs1Zr-XI_MeiqBvFKLOQ
  25. skeptic

    Leadership Challenge

    Sounds as if they have basically put the old WB course into a new format. 8 days on the side of the mountain at a summer camp. Formed into the traditional patrols, and you were scouts all week, with patrol challenges and all that it entailed. Most of that is lost from the current WB plan that can be completed indoors for the most part, often using dorms, and multiple weekends.
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  • Posts

    • I like @mashmaster borrowing suggestion.  Start with your scout's personal safety - gloves,  glasses,  mask, headlamp..  in kit. Don't worry if you don't have "this" or "that", a WFA class will teach what "this" and "that" you should carry and if you don't, how to improvise from what you do have. For example, using a belt as a tourniquet. Definitely pay attention to other bleed stop (e.g  QuikClot, Woundstop) tools. I have bought supplies from Chinook who have been helpful.  https://www.chinookmed.com/    My $0.01
    • Consider the yurt a cabin not a tent.  Whole troops with a full range of ages share cabins all the time.  For the adults, do whatever separation makes everybody most comfortable, be it hanging tarps or the lone male sleeping in his truck.
    • Does a scout have any say?  Only so far as the troop follows his suggestion.  But there's no reason in this story to think the scout on his own took some of the proceeds of his sales and gave or ordered the giving of those funds to anyone else. This is a news story that has two facts: 1) a scout sold $15k popcorn, 2) some portion of the money raised from those sales was used to help a local nursing home.  There is a causative relation between the two facts: in order for there to be money to give to the nursing home there had to be a sale of popcorn. There's nothing inaccurate about the story as told, but in a local feel good news item of less than two minutes duration there's no time and no reason to walk through the obvious chain of events: 1) Scout sold $15k popcorn, 2) after paying council troop retainss $5k from those sales, 3) troop decides by whatever process they used (presumably including some input from scout and his family) to pass some of that largess on to nursing home. As a practical matter there's no other way for this to work.  Unless the scout only accepted cash, or cash plus checks made out to him personally, the money from the sales all has to pass through the troop's accounts, and ultimately it's the troop writing whatever check or other form the donation took. It's just a pleasant little story to fill up one third of the time between two commercials on the local news broadcast and nothing more.  Don't over think it.
    • I've seen an abusive situation happen in a large tent full of same-age (11 year old) Scouts, but then again, we were able to quickly put a stop to it and the offender was immediately sent home from the event and then barred from Scouting. That might have been more challenging in a 2-person tent where it was one kid's word against the other's. 

      I feel quite comfortable with our girls sharing a yurt. I just wanted an outside pair of eyes on the G2SS rules to make sure I wasn't conveniently interpreting it to suit my unit's situation.  

      Stringing a hammock outside (without rain and wind protection) would not be an option for a February campout on the Oregon coast, but it's definitely something to keep in mind for other outings. 
    • Lean on the "modifications may be made" bit. When we had one female adult with a troop in one cabin, she'd have a bunk with a tarp hung for privacy ... adults on one wall, boys on the opposite wall. (I actually, slung my hammock outside that night, and that's what I'd likely do if I were the sole male in this situation.) All the youth will be fine in their yurt. The tenting scenario applies to the more typical situation where you have 2-man or 3-man tents. Basically, abusive situations seem to be more likely when pairs or triples are too far apart in age. That said, be prepared with a spare tent. 
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