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Per WSJ -BSA may declare bankruptcy

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16 minutes ago, carebear3895 said:

All of us got the email at the exact same time the volunteers did, even our SE. The Chief caught all of us by surprise on this one

? Really ? Haven't you read the annual report (especially the footnotes at the bottom of the financial statements)?

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19 minutes ago, carebear3895 said:

All of us got the email at the exact same time the volunteers did, even our SE. The Chief caught all of us by surprise on this one

Considering the news article came out yesterday, or the day before, I think the CSE decided to do some damage control. I do not think ANYONE (emphasis) planned this email.

 

On a tangent, Carebear, love the quote. Just realize Vader went to the Light Side of the Force in the end. I too  returned from the Dark Side.  To paraphrase Luke Skywalker,  I know there is good in you. National hasn't driven it from you fully.  

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16 hours ago, JoeBob said:

See Liberals!  There is a Santa Claus!

Can't you just hear the wine-coolers clinking together?

There are a lot of people who are politically left/liberal on this very forum and none of us want to see the BSA in bankruptcy or any other bad financial situation.

You unfairly characterize this news as part of some liberal agenda or plot by liberals to destroy the BSA. In doing so you insult every liberal BSA member, volunteer, and family. For some reason the moderators tolerate it. I have no idea why.

Edited by FireStone
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1 hour ago, Eagledad said:

I disagree that program varies widely.

I report only what I see around me in our district.

Our moderate troop of 30 Scouts goes camping 10 times a year and we attended two different summer camps. In addition to our active outdoor program, we have a vigorous advancement program with four new Eagle Scouts during 2018.

Next door is a struggling troop with barely enough boys to maintain their charter. They meet only sporadically. They took only four boys to summer camp. Aside from summer camp, they went camping only once in the past year. Only one Scout in that troop advanced in rank during 2018.

Also nearby is a megatroop of 130+ Scouts. They go camping multiple times a month, they send contingents to BSA High Adventure Bases annually, and they generate new Eagle Scout candidates on a monthly basis. While they are a visible community presence and attract hoards of new recruits, Scouting on that scale is beyond my experience and comprehension.

That is the reasoning for my assertion that consistency of the Scouting program varies widely at the unit level.

Edited by gblotter
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Can anyone comment on the ownership/relationship between Philmont and BSA National. Would Philmont be immune from divestiture brought on by Bankruptcy? How much funding does Philmont receive from BSA National? 

Also last thing BSA needs is a bailout by US government. Would be the worst case scenario.

 

Edited by Eaglein87
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3 minutes ago, gblotter said:

Our moderate troop of 30 Scouts goes camping 10 times a year . . .

Next door is struggling troop with barely enough boys to maintain their charter . . .

Also nearby is a megatroop of 130+ Scouts. They go camping multiple times a month . . .

Concur that program delivery varies widely among units.  In my view, consistently anemic units with poor programs that go on year after year are the single greatest long-term threat to Scouting.  Why?  Because adults who had a poor Scouting experience as youth won't put their kids in the program, and neither will their friends and family members.  Yet because shutting down an ineffective unit will look bad on this year's district and council membership statistics, district and council officials won't even consider it; they will even nurse the unit along each year at recharter time even though there is no improvement.  Corporate Scouting.

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10 minutes ago, Eaglein87 said:

Can anyone comment on the ownership/relationship between Philmont and BSA National. Would Philmont be immune from divestiture brought on by Bankruptcy? How much funding does Philmont receive from BSA National? 

Also last thing BSA needs is a bailout by US government. Would be the worst case scenario.

 

I believe it is a trust from the Phillips family and not owned by BSA.  The money for running it comes from endowments.  I know that Sea Star Base Galveston is set up the same way.  I don't know about the others, but those two I know were started by someone who was mega-rich and wanted to give back in a way that protects the property.  An analogy is the Getty foundation runs off of the interest of the big pile of money that J Paul Getty donated and that balance doesn't get touched.  They even had to scale back investments on art because they had more money available.  So Philmont doesn't go away, but maybe it ends up more open to other groups that the Phillips foundation decides to support.

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7 minutes ago, gblotter said:

I report only what I see around me in our district.

Our moderate troop of 30 Scouts goes camping 10 times a year and we attended two different summer camps. In addition to our active outdoor program, we have a vigorous advancement program with four new Eagle Scouts during 2018.

Next door is struggling troop with barely enough boys to maintain their charter. They meet only sporadically. They took only four boys to summer camp. Aside from summer camp, they went camping only once in the past year. Only one Scout in that troop advanced in rank during 2018.

Also nearby is a megatroop of 130+ Scouts. They go camping multiple times a month, they send contingents to BSA High Adventure Bases annually, and they generate new Eagle Scout candidates on a monthly basis. While they are a visible community presence and attract hoards of new recruits, Scouting on that scale is beyond my experience and comprehension.

That is the reasoning for my assertion that consistency of the Scouting program varies widely at the unit level.

Well yes, but would you really want it any different? What you are talking about is personality of the adults in troop, not lack of quality control. Don't you think the program needs that much flexability? Programs in general do the best they can with the resources they can obtain. They may vary a little here in there with implementing the program, but it's more of a judgement of how they believe National intended, not a personal action purposely breaching the program.

I find myself in an odd place defending National, but personally, I believe Nationals failures are the result of NOT listening, I mean really listening, to the units. However, you want National to hang around if you expect the program to survive, even with girls. And, while the Eagle part of the discussion got silly in the other thread with adding more adventure and so forth, truth is National has done a pretty good job of not letting the Eagle loose it's prestigious reputation. After reading some of the posts on this forum, would you want to implement some of their suggestions?:blink: 

I used to travel more for my business. So, I would get on the forum and ask to visit units across the country. While they each have their personalities, they all pretty much ran the same program. As scout from liberal California could easily join a Troop in the conservative south and without missing a beat. Because of training and the handbooks, everyone pretty much runs the same basic program. That integrity is the only thing that will save the program in the future, even with adding girls. 

Barry

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4 minutes ago, mashmaster said:

I believe it is a trust from the Phillips family and not owned by BSA.  The money for running it comes from endowments.  I know that Sea Star Base Galveston is set up the same way.  I don't know about the others, but those two I know were started by someone who was mega-rich and wanted to give back in a way that protects the property.

I have no idea about such things, but I hope your description about independent trust ownership is true.

If accurate, that means Philmont and Sea Base would not appear on the BSA's financial disclosures as owned assets (although The Summit apparently is listed), correct?

I defer to smarter brains on such topics.

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7 minutes ago, dkurtenbach said:

Concur that program delivery varies widely among units.  In my view, consistently anemic units with poor programs that go on year after year are the single greatest long-term threat to Scouting.  Why?  Because adults who had a poor Scouting experience as youth won't put their kids in the program, and neither will their friends and family members.  Yet because shutting down an ineffective unit will look bad on this year's district and council membership statistics, district and council officials won't even consider it; they will even nurse the unit along each year at recharter time even though there is no improvement.  Corporate Scouting.

I agree 100% on the first part.  The single biggest threat to Scouting's membership numbers are the multitude of really anemic programs.  

But, I see it differently on the second.  It's not the role of the BSA to shut down those programs.  They can and should provide more than support, training, and reaources than they do to today.  I've said before that one of the biggest failures of the BSA has been the way they have wasted the district concept.  The districts are the front line of the BSA in improving unit quality.  You want better quality units, you invest in stronger district teams.

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Can anyone confirm costs on Bechtel? Is it true that the cost is close to the total BSA endowment? Some articles out there claim such.

https://www.nbcnews.com/news/world/west-virginia-mega-camp-adds-boy-scouts-troubles-flna6C10643112

"Costs are rising. Initially budgeted at $176 million through 2013, the Summit's cost is now estimated to reach at least $350 million by the end of this year and $439 million by the end of 2015"

 

Edited by Eaglein87

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42 minutes ago, Eaglein87 said:

Can anyone comment on the ownership/relationship between Philmont and BSA National. Would Philmont be immune from divestiture brought on by Bankruptcy? How much funding does Philmont receive from BSA National? 

It has always been my assumption that BSA National owns Philmont.  The question would be whether there is any "restrictive covenant" in the deed by which the property was transferred to the BSA, which seeks to control what the property can and cannot be used for, and what happens if the BSA no longer owns it. [Note after seeing Mashmaster's comment:  Ok, I was thinking in the right direction, but not far enough.]

I see no reason why Philmont would be any more "immune from divestiture" than any other non-residential property owned by any other person.  (Residential property, meaning the home you live in, can be protected, unprotected or partially protected, depending on what state you are in, and the specific financial factors at work in that case.)  That's one of the main reasons to file a Chapter 11 - to try to keep your property while getting more time to pay your debts, and often to reduce certain kinds of debts. Sometimes it means that some property will be sold while other property is retained.  If you cannot get approval for a reorganization plan, or your reorganization fails for some other reason, you often end up in a "liquidating 11" in which all your property is sold and the proceeds are used to pay creditors.  That is what happened to Radio Shack and Toys R Us.  They originally filed for reorganization and closed some stores, with the intention of remaining in business as a smaller operation, but it didn't work out and they were liquidated.

This is an area of law that I know something about, but I have been withholding general comment because (1) if I had a dime for every company or individual who "might file" but never does, I would be a rich man, and (2) you never really know what's going on until you see the "schedules" that are filed with (or shortly after) the bankruptcy petition.  They will list every asset and its value, every debt (both undisputed and disputed), every creditor (including those who have filed lawsuits that are still pending, though in the case of sexual abuse it may not list their full names and the amount of the claim will probably be listed as "unliquidated" - which means, by the way, that we would know how many of these lawsuits there are, which I don't think we know at this point), and either at the beginning or sometime later, every category of income with amounts, and every item of expense, with amounts.  This is likely going to be way more information than they put in their public annual financial reports, and way, way more than they would like to disclose..  That's one of the disadvantages to filing bankruptcy, you have to lay out your entire financial life for the public to see,  but it's all part of the "deal" in which you can get some relief from your debts and stay in operation.

Edited by NJCubScouter
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