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SMMatthew

Reinstatement Fees

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I have a Scout in my troop who was elected into the Order of the Arrow in 2013. He completed his ordeal that year and paid his $10 dues to the lodge for 2012, but he didn't remain active much afterward getting his sash. He didn't attend any OA events in 2014 and he didn't pay his dues to the lodge for the year. However now he's older and he has some new friends who are in the Order and so he'd decided that he wants to become active in the lodge again (maybe even go for Brotherhood).

 

So this Scout went to pay his dues for 2015 to become re-active and the lodge told him that he has to pay a "reinstatement fee." The lodges annual dues are $10 and the reinstatement fee is an additional $20 (it's a shame he didn't just pay the $10 dues the last year even if he wasn't going to be active, he would have saved $10 in the long-run). So now this Scout has to pay $30 just to re-become a member of the lodge.

 

I'll admit I know very little of the structure and policies of the OA beyond the very local chapter-level. I do know that lodge dues, finances, policies and practices vary from lodge-to-lodge and council-to-council... but a quick Google search showed me that many lodges have similar policies (whether $10, $15 or $20 for dues and/or reinstatement fees).

 

Now I'm not anti-dues here, I understand the lodge needs money from it's members in order to maintain and offer a quality program. But I am curious as to why an added fee, and especially such a high fee, exists simply to rejoin? Are there actually added costs/expenses to reinstating or reactivating someone's membership in the OA? If so, what exactly are they? Or is the penalty of a reinstatement fee merely being used a intensive to get people to not let their dues lapse.

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I was inducted into the OA in 1993 and made Brotherhood in 1994. Then, in 1997 when I went off to college I didn't remain active with the BSA. It wasn't until 2011 that I came back and have been very active as a Scouter. The only thing I had to do was pay $12 and tell them when my Brotherhood date was...

 

Your Scout's situation sounds fishy to me. You might inquire with your local Lodge Advisor to get the scoop.

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I'm in the same boat as LeCastor. Was inducted in 1991 and was active in the lodge until 1994. Came back as an adult leader in 2012 and only had to pay my $15 annual lodge dues... no reinstatement fee. But like you said, SMMatthew, each lodge is different and you're may have a standing fee in the policy books for this.

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Does the "reinstatement fee" include the dues for this year and next year? I was in one lodge that, if you tried to register, say for 2015, but were not registered for the current year, they would tack on the current year's fee.

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Doesn't seem very Scout like to me.

 

 

That's the first reinstatement fee I've heard of in Scouting.

 

In general the attitude of Scouting seems to be a warm welcome back and no punitive fees to anyone who care to rejoin after an absence.

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Our lodge require you to pay back dues (max. two years) for lapsed members. Seems to encourage a lot of members to stay lapsed.

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And our lodge does not charge back dues. Pay just the annual dues when you get back involved. Paying back dues discourages inactive members once they make a decision to get back involved. Keep making those great all inclusive rules.

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2009-2

 

 

DISTRIBUTION:

Scout Executive Section Adviser

Section Chief Area Director

National Committee Lodge Adviser

 

Frequently, OA members have let their active membership status lapse by not keeping their

dues up-to-date. Many times these members still reside in their original council area and are

getting back active in Scouting and the OA. Other times the member has moved to a new

location and wants to become active in the lodge of their new council. We want to encourage

inactive OA members to become active in Scouting and in the Order; therefore we should

make it easy for them to reinstate their active membership. The national committee

recommends the following dues payment reinstatement policy:

 

A former Order of the Arrow member, more than 18 months in arrears in paying dues,

who is a member of the Boy Scouts of America in good standing, can rejoin the Order

of the Arrow by paying the current year’s dues to the council’s OA lodge.

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