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Everything posted by Polaris

  1. Agree with NJCubScouter. Pack Meetings involve the Cubmaster and the entire group of boys. Dens involve boys in the same grade and they meet separately from the Pack. I am aware with some Packs in our area, the boys all meet on the same night and in the same location. One night a month is reserved for the Pack Meeting and the other 3 nights are reserved for Den Meetings. If this is the case in your Pack, I agree with you. On the night the Dens meet, it appears too much time is being spent on group time and not enough time in the Den Meeting.
  2. I second Qwazse. Make copies of all paperwork. Always. Make. Copies. As a former CC, I gave a copy to our DE or took it to the Council office for processing. DE would take to Roundtable to give the award to the individual or I would pick it up and take it. I left it up to the DE or Council to get the elusive final signature. If I picked it up, I would then give it to the Scouts to present to their Den Leader at a Pack Meeting with a blurb on why their Den Leader was the best DL ever. The Den Leader will appreciate the presentation for the Scouts way better than from
  3. The Troop is sending 2 crews to NT in 2016 out of the Atikokan base. A couple of years ago, the crews paid extra for the lightweight canoes for their NT trip. Most of the adults that went on this trip recommend the aluminum canoes stating the weight savings was negligible. They also said the lightweight canoes are more easily damaged. The 2016 crew is a 50/50 mix of young/older scouts with very little canoeing experience. We will have enough adults in each crew to solo carry a canoe including the interpreter. For those of you that have attended NT, what do you recommend--lig
  4. A former Boy Scout leader was told by his Catholic Church he cannot resume his role despite the policy change. http://m.wlky.com/news/former-gay-boy-scout-leader-says-hes-not-allowed-to-return-to-leadership-role/34538506
  5. Website--outdated. Needs webmaster. However, Google Calendar link is current. Members log in to view TroopMaster reports, adult and youth rosters, meeting minutes, etc. TroopMaster for advancement. TroopLedger for finances. Google Groups for mass email. Divided into adults only and adults/youth. Primary form of communication. Shutterfly share site. Photos are uploaded into event folders. MS Excel, Word and PowerPoint for spreadsheets, docs and COH slide presentations. Not sure of program used to create COH printed programs.
  6. Polaris

    Pack Logos

    Our CC is a graphic designer. She designed ours--obviously free of charge. Poll your parents and see if you have some talented folks. Some of the "logos" you see out there are on t-shirts from ClassB.com.
  7. Here's an idea for a water boot--Keen Gorge Water Boots--however, this model is discontinued. Less expensive than boots in the NT Trading Post. These boots were acceptable by BSA NT standards. SM's son wore these for BSA NT 2013 expedition out of Atikokan, ON and into Quetico. SM said they were perfect. Rugged soles with 3mm neoprene and adjustable straps.
  8. You are not going to find specific guidance on Eagle advancement reimbursement procedures. This is determined by your unit's committee with very limited guidance from the BSA. Your CO may offer more guidance as it should reflect their policies and procedures. I suggest you bring this up at your committee meeting. Our policy is in writing, so we are all on the same page. Here is our policy: ECOH expenses are the family's responsibility however, with receipts, can be reimbursed out of the scout's account--which consists of parent funds and fundraiser funds. Eagle Project expe
  9. No. You cannot stop payment. You would resolve it in this manner: Step 1: Contact the retailer and explain the problem and settle the issue. Step 2: If this does not resolve the problem, contact the financial institution of the card and file a dispute. This is then turned over to Master Card or VISA and they will contact the retailer to investigate the issue. Exceptions to this may include: "All sales final" sales or an agreed payment per terms of a contract. Of course, you must be timely reporting the dispute. Sounds like a credit card, eh? A lot of folks have misconcepti
  10. This depends upon when you report the fraud to the bank according to Fair Credit Billing Act and the Electronic Fund Transfer Act. Source: http://www.consumer.ftc.gov/articles/0213-lost-or-stolen-credit-atm-and-debit-cards If the loss is reported within 2 days for a debit card, the maximum loss is up to $50. Wait for more than 2 days, you may be responsible for up to $500. That being said, I asked our banker about this and he said if it is legitimate fraud, not to worry about it. He said they have clients that report fraud monthly--believe it or not. For this reason, u
  11. We use credit/debit cards. It is a convenient way to pay online summer camp and HA deposits. And it eliminates postage on registered mail. The CC, SM and ASM will text a receipt so I can match the charges to our online bank account and categorize within TroopLedger. I will use the card to make after-hours ATM deposits and the receipt includes an image of the check. I go online and check our account several times a week and look for unusual activity. I was leary when I learned we had them, but cards work well for our large troop.
  12. I received a Starbucks gift card. Since I rarely go out for coffee, it was a nice gift. I also received a camping duffle bag that I now use in Boy Scouts. My son recently swiped it from me and uses it when he isn't using his backpack. Several years ago, I gathered up the boys and had them present their Webelos Leader with a knot award. I had them stand up and tell a favorite story or why they thought Mr. T was a great Den leader. He was so surprised. I could tell it made his day.
  13. Fraud and Theft ....can happen without dual signatures. Money could easily be transferred from the general fund into someone else's account. No reimbursement check needed. The SM could purchase 2 bags of charcoal and 3 propane refills and keep a bag and tank for his personal use. I don't know of anyone in the Troop that is checking all of the purchases and making sure they are all present and accounted for. The grubmaster could hand me a receipt and his parents keep half the food for themselves. Patrols will often combine at a campout if they are missing a majority of members. The a
  14. Reimbursements: ....must have a receipt. The grubmasters must turn in food receipts within 2 weeks after the campout. The family can be reimbursed directly via a check or they can have the credit applied to their account. Most opt for a credit. If no receipt, thanks for your donation! Now, I have called a campsite and requested a receipt when the individual couldn't find it buried in his email. The SM and CC use their debit cards quite frequently, so honestly, I don't write a lot of reimbursement checks. They will throw the receipt on the shopping cart or on their
  15. SP--Thanks! BTW--Sometimes I act like I am 21, but I am much older....... Fundraisers and Cash: The troop's main fundraiser goes on all year long. The money ebbs and flows throughout the year, but the majority of it comes in around June. To be honest, I am not sure this fundraising chair counts all the money before she hands it to me. I have never asked. She puts it into an envelope or ziploc bag and hands it to me. For this reason, I count it several times before I finalize the deposit. I then send her a spreadsheet of my individual deposits along with expenses (related to the
  16. You could ask the individual to take their app and YPT certificate directly to the Council office and thank them for saving you a trip. Just be sure they give you the copies in the back so you have their info (sans SSN). I remind folks that the BSA is serious about background checks and their personal info is necessary to run the check. I also let them know I will guard the app and take it to Council ASAP to reduce the risk it will end up in the wrong hands. I haven't had any issues after they understand why the numbers are needed.
  17. Background: We have a large troop. We maintain "scout accounts" and parents pay into the account and hold reserve funds for activities. We use TroopLedger software to move funds back and forth between scout accounts, reserve accounts and the general fund. I send families statements each month so they can see what is going on in their son's account. This takes quite a bit of time since we have a large troop. Re: Financial Policies ​ We don't have a lot of written financial policies. Most policies are written after dealing with an issue. For example, fundraising funds cannot
  18. Regarding ordering from the popcorn's site: Check on the shipping costs. Two years ago, my son sold popcorn to his out-of-town relatives via the Camp Masters website. I then had to listen to their complaints during Thanksgiving dinner about the cost of shipping. It was as much as the boxes of popcorn. Other parents in the Pack complained about the same thing and the Pack no longer mentions the ability for individuals to order online.
  19. We have a Cub Scout lodge "camp-in" in January. Lights out at 10:00 or 10:30 pm. No all-nighters here. One lodge has 2 inch floor mattresses and another has bunks. We have non-advancement indoor and outdoor activities. Breakfast in the kitchen includes Webelos-cooked pancakes and reheated frozen turkey sausage and adults supervising Ziplock bag eggs. And coffee. For dinner, sometimes we order pizza or we will go outside and cook over coals. This camp-in has our largest attendance because parents are using flush toilets, there aren't any bugs, they don't have to set up a tent and the build
  20. Sock Wars is great game in this environment. Have families bring several bags of socks. Flip the tables on their sides and/or bring cardboard boxes to make forts. Ball up the socks, blow the whistle and go. Kids vs. kids. Adults vs. kids. If you are hit, you are out. Time the rounds. Be prepared for screaming and lots of energy. Wash, pair up and donate socks to local shelter.
  21. I just sent in my last ticket item. I asked my WB Program Director to leave my stuff at the Council counter in lieu of the beading hoopla. He said I could at least meet him and my TG for coffee and a congratulatory handshake. Will do so in the next couple of weeks.
  22. Our Pack provides meat and families bring potluck sides. We use an online invitation thru Evite or Punchbowl. Guests can RSVP and sign up for potluck via the electronic invitation.
  23. Dues are $144. Fee includes Boy's Life. Troop pays for Leader BSA registrations as a thank you. This is a large troop with a lot of Leaders. Volunteers are not reimbursed for mileage unless it is further than 4 hours. A portion is used towards the cost of NYLT. ASMs may request for up to $25 for training, but most do not. Base campout price averages $17-18 to include site and food. If the Scouts whitewater, climb, snow tube, amusement park, caving, it is going to cost more. Troop did not raise fees to cover increased BSA registration fees. They will look at the budget aga
  24. You can Scout and participate in sports. Some families choose sports or whatever over Scouting. Your enthusiasm for Scouting is not the same as theirs. A Scout family with frequent absences will receive a phone call from the Den Leader. In almost all cases, the family has quit. As far as volunteering and financial responsibilities, if it is the same family again and again, a phone call is needed--not an email. "Mrs. Smith, I am giving you a reminder phone call that you signed you to help with........ Will you be there on Tuesday? Also, we ask our families to help out with expenses and co
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