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Everything posted by fred8033

  1. Dang. I responded to an old post. Correct. When working with the scout, use the words the scout sees. Use the GTA for your own education to interpret the words the scout sees. Further, I'd parse the requirements Plan ... What does the scout need to plan? Can the project be broken down into smaller steps that need to be coordinated? Do multiple groups need to be coordinated? Develop ... What does the scout have to solve? Choosing where to install. Purchasing. Pricing. Technical challenges. Give leadership to others ... How is the scout the "leader" of this project? This is beyond taking instructions from others and then repeating work instructions to a work crew. The requirements can also be summarized as how does the scout own the project? How is he a driving force for the project? How is this his project?
  2. Agreed. It's not a problem. It's just a twinge and a place for future improvement. As a friend, I'm saying ... that's a stretch. Everyone treats it as an in-charge title. The big chief is always expected to be skilled, but the focus is on command more than skill. Example, "headmaster" is about being in-charge of the school and less about being more knowledgeable about the educational topics. A headmaster should be a successful academic, but the job is about control. "Scout master general" is defined as "A person, formerly so called, under whose direction all the scouts and army messengers were placed." https://www.definitions.net/definition/scout-master-general Everyone expect scoutmasters to be skilled, but expect scoutmasters to lead the scouts. I understand the long standing tradition of "scoutmaster". I've just never been endeared with the term as much as others.
  3. Maybe it's just me then. I've repeatedly run into people where it's not a positive term. Even myself. When I first took training, I was a bit creep'ed out by the term. I've known the word my whole life and I've known it's respected. But the term can be creepy. ... It's never been a major issue with anyone. ... I just don't think it's a good choice. ... I put it in the category of a place we could improve / clarify.
  4. Well said. I agree. I doubt it's the highest priority.
  5. Fair enough. We have different opinions. That happens. For me, the tools of scouting is getting scouts outside, active, in-fellowship with other youth and having to work to do things. I'm less invested in the term "scoutmaster". But, that's me.
  6. I have mostly the same understanding. IRS allows commissions as it helps raise funds for the non-profit. It's a common fundraising tool. But if you go beyond "significant" such as 30%, then the commission begins to outweigh the non-profit benefit. I'd argue "inurement" is still an issue as often the CC and SM are key personnel deciding how to spend funds and it can directly affect their own costs. For example, the troop that pays for the SM's costs on a trip even though there are multiple other adults willing to go and it's mostly the SM's sons going on the trip and maybe one or two others. Either way, it's often a matter of "risk". Troops are too small usually and IRS is too busy. And, it would usually be the "church" that needs to be audited and troop finances rarely appear in church book keeping. It's like a magical line-item that's never mentioned.
  7. IMHO ... you almost need two sets of recruiting materials. One for youth. One for parents. Youth want to do things. Go places. Get out of the house. Get out from under adult oversight. Parents want a safe environment with positive peer relationships. Environments that teach responsibility and values. IMHO, what youth and parents want are very different. Best way to market is through your existing scouts.
  8. Program. Exciting and interesting stuff. ... #1 recruitment tool is the existing scouts.
  9. Tradition values the term "scoutmaster". It's been used for 100+ years. ... but a different term would be better. Yes, I do say a change is needed. I'm less concerned about the politically incorrect as the misinterpretation. Many scouters have been trained for years and years. But all to often, they do forget the role as it's termed "master". 17 vs 10 is a consideration, but if the scout is in a troop, then let the scout make his own choice ... as long as it's within the boundaries of safety and reasonableness. I see little difference advising a 17 year old vs a 10 year old. ... It all depends on maturity and capability. And, then we should consider the youth too. The reason to keep the term "scoutmaster" is tradition. The reasons to change it are many.
  10. "Advisor" is the better term and more accurate toward the intention. I've always thought the term scout"master" caused misinterpretation. And long term, adults forget their role because they keep hearing "master". I was once thinking "coach", but I've seen too many coaches with a military general command-n-control complex too. Language meaning changes over time. Acceptable words from 100 years ago now mean very different things. IMHO, it's fully acceptable to update words to reflect the desired intention. Changing to "Advisor" fixes both a politically-correct issue and a misinterpretation issue. It may even help perception distance the scouting program from past abuses. IMHO, it would be a very good update. Sadly, I see many long time scouters having issues with the change. But, it's a change that is needed.
  11. I support you. Beyond the long standing tradition of the terms, the terms can be creepy and easily misinterpreted.
  12. I remember being a young intern working with male and female engineers and technicians. I was always uncomfortable talking about cables having male / female connectors. Seriously.
  13. I've seen that too. Recently, I've seen units that begin to charge unusually high dues, but give all fundraising back to the scouts directly to subsidize those charges. The net result is they collect very committed scouts who do fund raise or who's parents can afford the program. There is no middle ground for scouts who don't want to raise funds or who's parents can't afford the costs.
  14. If you want absolutes, ... Don't do fund raisers or ... Don't route any fundraiser profits to scout accounts or ... Run it as a for-profit event (aka helping individual scouts reduce their cost) Pay sales tax. Give the scouts an IRS 1099-MISC for scouts earning about IRS threshold But it seems clear, there is a reasonable middle ground.
  15. When I ran a business, I initially invested hundreds (probably thousands) of hours understanding how to setup a business and setup the whole infrastructure. ... It was cool. IRS would send paper copies of each and every of there publications. And, there was this place in Pueblo, CO that would send educational materials. ... Then, I discovered the incredible, incredible value of an accountant specializing in business administration and tax preparation. unemployment, quarterly filings, with-holdings, etc. I often joked with her that she kept me out of jail . The KEY is that the accountant rarely spoke of legal vs illegal. The tax preparer almost always spoke in terms of audit risk / attention risk. ... She was often annoyed how risk adverse I was. ... She was the best business expense I had and I was happy to pay her invoice when it came. This might be semantics, but it's the thresholds that are NOT clear. The law is clear. If Johnny brings in a fundraising net of $200, all $200 going to Johnny is wrong. It's the what about $100? What about $60? What about $10? From what I've seen, IRS says 30% is "substantial". If the remaining fundraising dollars only lower Johnny's costs without lowering cost of others in the troop or helping the troop as a whole do more, then it's "private benefit" and not a non-profit actual.
  16. It will be interesting to see if that is true. From what I'm reading, the original donors wishes may need to be honored, even if it isn't within the boundaries of "BSA". It will be truly interesting to see how this washes out. If the property was purchased, it could be a very different story.
  17. A transfer to hide or protect assets, yes. But many donations do NOT 100% cut ties. Donations can be conditional. In fact, I believe there is a local camp donated for scout use, but if scouts choose to not use it as a camp anymore, the ownership transfers back to the original family / owners. I doubt the local scout group could sell it for cash even under court order as they do not outright own it.
  18. That's the same thing our troop does. Our current treasurer uses a spreadsheet. Previous treasurers used Quicken or another tool. The key is that all transactions roll up through the scout account, aka "virtual" scout account. If the scout makes a payment, it credits the scout account. If the scout is charged for camping, dues, etc, then the scout account is debited. If parents want, they can see how their scout's account has increased and decreased over the year. When scouts get credit from a fundraiser, it's just a credit to their scout account.
  19. Many of the scout properties were "donated". Is there any information about rescinding rights for donated properties? For example, if BSA chose to sell, the property ownership would revert back to the original owner. Philmont was donated by Phillips family and there is discussion of restrictions. Big Monson was donated by Homer Formby. The Submit was donated very recently. Were there rescinding rights that block sale ?
  20. I'd hate to see BSA lose sea base. It's an incredible and unique experience for scouts. But then again, I'm betting BSA could partner with outside firms to provide similar experiences without owning the BSA asset. But, I'd sure hate to see it lost.
  21. You will NOT get a clear cut answer. You will get the answers people want to give to justify a desired answer. Scout accounts is always a very contentious debate in scouting. Heck, money always messes things up. BSA's publication is fairly consistent with IRS's letters. IRS has intentionally left this vague and rules are set by precedent on a case-by-case basis. But, IRS's intention is clear. Money is for the non-profit. Below substantial amounts, scouts can receive to their scout accounts funds as an incentive to help raise funds for the unit. Dollar "amounts" is mentioned because small amounts minimize IRS audit risks. IRS cases from 1990s reflect band boosters with 60,000+ in fund raising (if I remember right). The main issues are interpreting "private benefit" and "substantial". Substantial private benefit is wrong. Here's my recommendation. Don't let this burn friendships or people. Depending on the debate and who's involved, this can go every direction. Publish your rules. Be consistent. Be kind. Be courteous. Don't sweat it if your troop doesn't get the exact answer you want. It's really hard to get a clean answer. Watch for people getting upset. Money is always a contention point. For me, I think the IRS rules are clear. Scout accounts can receive benefits from fundraisers, but keep it 10% to 20% of sales. Over 30% is substantial and against IRS rules. Under 10% won't be a an incentive. It's just that the risk of being audited is extremely low with the amounts an average troop uses for fund raising. Even if your troop raises $30,000 in wreaths. BUT, if your troop is depositing $100,000 each year in your troop bank account from a single fundraiser, then I'd be more concerned. At some point, if you really want a good answer, hire a tax attorney and pay them their fee to get an answer. And, if you don't like the answer, get a different tax attorney. You probably will get a different answer.
  22. That's my experience too. Scouters bend over backwards to help all.
  23. Like "defund the police", "local choice" can infer good and bad. When I hear "local choice", I think of the beliefs and values of the the charter organizations. BSA asks the charters to give physically and financially. BSA provides the conceptual structure and the written program. Charter organizations provide this physical space and financial support. In that context, BSA must not discriminate membership. Charter organizations have the right though to host programs that reflect their own beliefs and values. There is always the option for parents to form scouting units under secular organizations and have a secular program: VFWs, schools, city governments, "parents of". Such secular organizations would reflect a more secular belief system. IMHO, "local option" means parents need to choose the scouting unit that reflects the values they want to teach their kids. I'm Catholic and I love my church. As a Catholic parent, I'd prefer my kids to be in a scouting unit hosted by a Catholic church. If there is no other benefit, my kids benefit from being in that church more than just Sunday morning. But then again, my kids have also been in units also hosted by other churches. I really didn't have an issue with that either. My sons have met youth and adults pretty much of every possible set of beliefs, value system and life styles. ... and to be honest ... it's never been an issue. ... the real issue in scouting is adult personality and conflict. But that's not a belief system issue. It's a personality issue.
  24. Can you take picture of blue and card and send image of the card? ... from what I'm hearing ... SM is trying to help and well intentioned, but may be a little over zealous ... OR, just trying to learn how to do things in this new COVID-19 safe-distancing world.
  25. Simple answer ... it should not be an issue. Recording MBs in ScoutBook do NOT require entering the MB counselor's name. Is the SM having an issue with this?
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