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Cubmaster Pete

Can a CO profit off a unit?

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 Just for starters the CO has given us $1000 every January for years to help with our recharter cost. I understand completely that they do not need to give us any money and that they are very generous. I am thankful for that.

Our CO has a public event one Wednesday a month. We were asked by the CO to sell brats and hamburgers at it for a fundraiser. Ok, sounds good. Captive audience, good exposure, helping our CO. Win-Win.

Now that I have found out more info, they want to withhold our yearly $1000 payment only if we commit to every month having the cookout fundraiser, and any profits go to the CO. Short and sweet our scouts work the sale and the CO keeps the money, and only then will we get the $1000. I do not know if we get to keep any additional money above and beyond the $1000, my guess is no.

We are having another meeting about this with our COR, both the troop and pack committee, and other leaders. In the meantime, what does everyone think? 

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 We had a similar situation. The boy scouts did the concessions stand at school ballgames, freeing up the sports parents so that they could watch their kids play. 

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It's weird in that this was a "gift" of $1,000 previously and now it's become a thing you have to do to get that same $1,000. It could still be perceived as completely generous and helpful to the pack/troop, but it just has a bit of a negative to it when it is presented in this way, demanding that you work for it or you won't get it anymore. 

If you're comfortable with it, go for it. I wouldn't do it if it were me, but only because I know it would be a challenge to organize enough scouts on a monthly basis to work the burger stand. The monthly commitment, the need to be there each and every month, that'a tough, and I'd be nervous about that commitment getting in the way of other activities. 

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22 minutes ago, FireStone said:

If you're comfortable with it, go for it. I wouldn't do it if it were me, but only because I know it would be a challenge to organize enough scouts on a monthly basis to work the burger stand. The monthly commitment, the need to be there each and every month, that'a tough, and I'd be nervous about that commitment getting in the way of other activities. 

That's a concern of mine as well. Or it would be a hard sell to scout families to commit.

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We do this for our CO, but it is once per year.  I think asking more, especially of a Cub Scout Pack, seems excessive; however, our relationship with our CO is 100% one sided.  You can probably find other ways to raise $1000 easier than 12 brat sales and if the check is the only true relationship you have (I.e. it’s not a church where most of the scouts are already members) then I would pass on the sales.

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So...let's assume you have 12 Scouts / Parents each time for 12 events and it's 2.5 hours each time - That is 360 hours.  For that time investment the unit gets $1,000 or roughly $2.75 per hour expended.

Also clearly there would be more time put in to organize the monthly labor needs, phone calls, schedules, etc.  That will fall on one of the leaders plates to coordinate.

May be better to just pay the recharter fee directly from unit funds and politely decline to be a labor force for the CO...unless you get a split of the profits.

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2 hours ago, Eagle1993 said:

We do this for our CO, but it is once per year.

I think that's entirely reasonable. What bothers me about Pete's arrangement is that he'd have to commit to it monthly, and assuming it takes place on a weekend that's 10-12 weekends each year that are now unavailable for other Pack activities. Even if you only needed a few scouts to work the burger stand, you can't schedule something else for the Pack that day (or weekend).

Something about the money bothers me too. Can't quite put my finger on it but the idea of the CO profiting while the Pack can only ever hope to earn the flat $1,000 contribution seems off. Nothing wrong per se with a CO benefiting from being a CO. Ideally we all hope the relationship is mutually beneficial. But in this case it's just a little murky.

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Being that it is one Wednesday (which hopefully is not your meeting day?), I'd do the cost/benefit analysis of whether you would make more money for the unit if you kept the profits from the events than the $1,000 annual payment.  I'm not saying that means you commit to it, but I would use that as part of my rationale to the CO on why the arrangement doesn't make the most fiscal sense.  By the same token, if the expected profits are less than a $1,000, the math then works to your favor on why not to do it.  if @Jameson76 's math is close to the real picture, you can find fundraisers that will bring in more than that level of funds with that time investment.    

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Beyond the charter renewal fee, does your CO provide meeting space/storage?  If they do you need to figure that into your calculation.  Yes, it's part of their responsibility but that doesn't mean the cost is $0.

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I would tell the CO, that if the $1000 is becoming a burden, they should keep it. Then, I would suggest that they should cut a deal with the scouts (and any other group) that for each month when that group volunteers, $85 will go to the to their treasury.

Is only $85 a night worth it to the committee? It depends. Are there other advantages to getting scouts "front and center" in uniform in public slinging burgers and sausage once a month? Can the scouts serving get a free meal?

Are you just a Pack? Or, Pack + Troop + Crew?

If my crew were sponsored by this CO, I might take them up on it. We'd arrange to have our officers' meeting that night, pass out recruiting flyers, and maybe even flash a slide show of recent activities.

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Can a unit politely decline?  I guess that would depend on your understanding of the relationship between the unit and the CO. The CO owns the unit. It's their unit.

An individual certainly has the right to politely decline. The CO then has the right to politely tell that individual that their service to the unit is no longer needed.

The unit is a different matter. I would say a unit does not have the right to decline.

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Hell I'd do it.... that's just me

Wait nevermind, you only get this money once a year.

How many times a year are you serving hotdogs?  once a month? for 12 months ?

Edited by JasonG172

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9 minutes ago, David CO said:

Can a unit politely decline?  I guess that would depend on your understanding of the relationship between the unit and the CO. The CO owns the unit. It's their unit.

An individual certainly has the right to politely decline. The CO then has the right to politely tell that individual that their service to the unit is no longer needed.

The unit is a different matter. I would say a unit does not have the right to decline.

 

Based on the original post, it sounds like they can politely decline.  But if they do decline, they will no longer get the $1,000 to help with recharter fees that they have gotten used to.

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