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SemperParatus

The High Cost of Scout Executives

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I was reviewing our Baltimore Area Council's 990s for the years 2003 - 2005 online the other day.

 

Here is the compensation (current and deferred) paid to our Scout Executive -

 

2003 $168,333

2004 $225,075

2005 $273,333

 

Total revenues for our council were as follows -

 

2003 $4,469,434

2004 $4,638,127

2005 $4,925,768

 

Based on these numbers, our council revenues increased 10% from 2003 to 2005, while our SE's pay increased 62%. This is completely absurd. I will be having a very difficult time keeping my mouth shut at the next FOS campaign pitch.

 

 

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How much would revenue have increased if the salary had stayed the same, or had been cut? Hard to say. Another way to look at it is that revenue increased by $450,000 and salary increased 105,000, less than 1/4 as much as revenue.

 

If the salary increase is being questioned as excessive, what revenue increase should be expected to justify the salary?

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SE salary should be tied to performance just like any other commission based executive position. Give the executive a relatively low base salary with a commission on revenue generated in excess of expenses. If the council does well, the SE does well.

Looks like this scenario has not historically followed that model as the compensation would have increased at the same rate as the council revenues. But it follows the trend in most of corporate America where some executives make 100s of times more than the workers.

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Semper, without disagreeing with your opinion, I would respectfully ask that you think twice before voicing it during the FOS presentation in front of your unit. The presenter is just a messenger and you would most likely be putting him on the spot (not the SE), while at the same time discouraging other possible contributors. Instead, bring the issue up at your distict committee meeting. Those are the folks who might be able to do some good.

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I wonder what other SEs in comparable councils are being paid? Is this a matter of needing to keep up with the market in order to attract or retain a good SE?

 

I'm not saying you aren't justified in asking some tough questions and expecting serious answers. I'm just curious. Oh and I have to agree w/ Trev that your FOS presenter probably can't answer these questions. But your SE now, I'd love to hear his or her answer!

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A good SE is worth their weight in gold. A bad SE isn't worth their weight in garbage. Depends on the job they do.

 

I second Trev's motion on not confronting the poor schlub who is doing your FOS presentation.

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I agree, the District Committee or the Council Committee meeting would be a better venue to direct that question to. Also, as was previously stated, some research on what other SE's in comparably sized councils would be appropriate.

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From 2003 - 2005, the Council's fund balance (its net worth) has declined from $3,370,000 to $2,961,000 - a loss of $409,000 over the three year period. These funds have been diverted from building the scouting program to feathering the nest of the exec. Director of Field Services was paid $121K in 2005, Director of Support Services - $107K, a half dozen of other suits were paid in the $80 - $90K range. It appears all of these underlings are tracking along at 10-15% annual raises which is 4x inflation and way more than average pay increases in the area's commercial sector.

 

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Yep. Semper, you've got a problem in that council.

 

Now curious, I checked my own council's 990s and found that between 2002 and 2004, our revenues increased by 52%, net assets increased by 14%, and salaries of the top five employees increased by 16%. Our 2004 revenues were $4,973,000, just slightly larger than Baltimore. Top exec compensation was $163k, with the next four ranging from $72k to $59k. These salaries seem reasonable for executives of a $5M outfit.

 

 

Want to know more? goto http://www.guidestar.org/ It's free.

 

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Taking a deep breath... Ok, I admit it, I am Form 990 challenged. Where abouts on the form do you find the breakout for executive salaries? I looked, I didn't find it. Yeah, I know, I always miss seeing things, just ask my dear wife.

 

SWScouter

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Wow!!

The guy who just left us didn't do so well -Only $99,873.00.

We are a small Council with about 5,000 traditional members.

Almost $20.00 per youth per year!!

(Hey Ed -You have him now and he is getting more)

Sadly the day is coming when they price themselves out of a job.

This year rather than donate to FOS I donated a LCD Projector! They / We needed one anyway and I know how my money was spent.

Ea.

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SW, it's found several pages back, like p.6 or 7. Only those making >$50K are listed. In my council, that's two people, and the SE makes double what the other one (Assistant SE) does. I find it curious that the compensation listed DEcreased from 2004-2005, and the contribution to pension fund dropped from around $13,000 to less than $500. Consequently, I don't trust those numbers any more than I do the membership numbers. Or maybe it does reflect performance, but I doubt it.

 

We are having our troop FOS presentation next week. I have been a consistent high dollar (relatively) pledger for many years, but this year, I think I'll write a check for $25 just to get my name off the call-back list. My big dollars will go to the Troop. To the IRS, it's all the same. Not to sound petty, but my council offers special collectable CSPs and coffee mug every year for a certain level of donation, and I haven't gotten one for a couple of years. It just doesn't seem important to anyone, in spite of numerous reminders. I am an avid patch collector, so that leaves a sour taste in my mouth. If they can't even do that right, how do I know they are spending my money wisely?(This message has been edited by scoutldr)

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Well now this is interesting. In our council of about 20,000 scouts the SE made in the neighborhood of 100,000 give or take a couple thousand, from 2002-2004. The 2005 and 2006 data is not posted. So that's $5 per scout to Eamonn's $20.

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As an FOS presenter, I have heard many of these concerns. The fact is that SOME of the money we contribute may not be used as we think best. But, without FOS donations, the council can not provide our boys with the programs they need. Witholding donations from the council or giving instead to your unit does not help the situation. Whether you use the council camp or other facilities, or not, they still need to be maintained. Even if your Exec is "overpaid", there are many other hardworking staffers who most likely are not! Most of us would say that the top dogs at our companies make too much. But are we overpaid? Not me!

 

In my opinion, the answer is to get involved in the process. Demand more for your money! Get to know those who make the money spending decisions. Work from within to make our organization a well tuned, financially responsible business. And although we don't like to think of it that way, at the uppermost levels, a council must be run like a business! And it takes much more than my annual FOS donations and my James West contribution. It takes BIG BUCKS! And that is the responsibility of your Exec.

 

Those of us who wear uniforms get do do the fun stuff and make sure our boys get the Scout program as it is intended. The guys in suits have to make sure we have the right tools to do our job. Now,unlike most of the companies we work for, in Scouts, the low level workers are also the owners! Believe it or not, we can bring about change, but we have to be active owners.

 

So keep giving every penny you can scrape up. Our boys deserve that much and then some! And keep a watchful eye on how the suits are spending that money and make them account for the success of their efforts!

 

 

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