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RememberSchiff

Camp Bomazeen (ME) to be sold

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Posted (edited)

Pine Tree Council had a board vote Thursday night to sell the 75-year-old Camp Bomazeen in Belgrade, Maine .

Pine Tree Council had earlier formed an emergency task force to address its financial problems but the task force concluded that unless the camp is sold, council would be out of money in a matter of months. The ongoing coronavirus pandemic has decimated the council’s ability to raise money for Scouting activities, officials said.

Matt Klutzaritz, Scout executive and CEO of the Raymond-based Pine Tree Council, said it was a difficult decision and they understand the move will make some loyal Camp Bomazeeners upset. But it’s necessary to keep the organization, and Scouting, going in the council’s region of the state, he said.

https://www.centralmaine.com/2020/07/18/historic-camp-bomazeen-in-belgrade-to-be-sold-by-boy-scouts-council-in-dire-financial-straits/

Edited by RememberSchiff

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 God ain't making any more land. When a camp is sold, it is sold and lost to Scouts. And to the future. The lack of forward looking management is always a shame. Such properties can be utilized and pay their own way if imaginative people work at it. Nature, ecological education programs. Public and private school programs. Agricultural education (organic? ) Demonstration gardens. Church , weddings, office "retreats", Isaac Walton utilization, Audubon Societies, even selective harvesting of timber. Publicity , even among Scout groups (limit to BOY Scouts? Why not offer to GIRL ScoutsUSA even?) , LDS has their own program now, can they use a few extra camp grounds ? The State might PAY for the opportunity to plant new trees (experimental American Chestnut?) . The NEED for our ("our") professional Scouters to be so often parochial ("it's got to be SCOUT stuff") is very sad. Want to know WHY Chicago Council wanted to sell all four of their camps? "Follow the money...."

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The council’s emergency task force report, a copy of which was obtained by the Kennebec Journal, recommends selling Camp Bomazeen within three months, with an emphasis on an ability to do a quick closing. It further recommends to auction the property off, if a sale is not made in 45 days.

Klutzaritz said the ideal sale would include an arrangement that would allow Scouting activities to continue to take place at the property, at times, though he wasn’t sure of the likelihood of that happening.

“I can tell you we have a group of people working toward that as their primary goal,” he said of selling it to an entity that would allow the Scouts to at least occasionally use the property.

https://www.centralmaine.com/2020/07/18/historic-camp-bomazeen-in-belgrade-to-be-sold-by-boy-scouts-council-in-dire-financial-straits/

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On 7/20/2020 at 9:51 PM, SSScout said:

 God ain't making any more land. When a camp is sold, it is sold and lost to Scouts. And to the future. The lack of forward looking management is always a shame. Such properties can be utilized and pay their own way if imaginative people work at it. Nature, ecological education programs. Public and private school programs. Agricultural education (organic? ) Demonstration gardens. Church , weddings, office "retreats", Isaac Walton utilization, Audubon Societies, even selective harvesting of timber. Publicity , even among Scout groups (limit to BOY Scouts? Why not offer to GIRL ScoutsUSA even?) , LDS has their own program now, can they use a few extra camp grounds ? The State might PAY for the opportunity to plant new trees (experimental American Chestnut?) . The NEED for our ("our") professional Scouters to be so often parochial ("it's got to be SCOUT stuff") is very sad. Want to know WHY Chicago Council wanted to sell all four of their camps? "Follow the money...."

While I agree with you 100%, this case is a little different.

 

This council (my council), due to previous unchecked SE and board, caused us to go almost 2 million in debt.  This year was supposed to be the year to lower that debt.  Obviously with everything cancelled, we haven't even scratched the surface.  The Council has done everything possible to lower expenses, and went from projected going belly up mid year, to end of August, and now looks like they can push it till November.   Once November hits, without incoming money, they will not longer be able to pay bills, salaries (limited staffing) and expenses, and will fold.

The camp they are looking to sell would give them more then enough to get the loans back in-line, and help rebuild the program council wide.  The Council board has been infused with newer members and the SE is new this year, so there is better hope not to repeat this all over again.  The current working plans is to sell to a group that will allow Scouting to happen at the camp, as most councils do nowadays anyway,  They just have to find the right group and work out the right deal.  There was a vote a year ago to do the same thing, but they didn't pass it, hoping to have a better year to make things happened, and it didn't, so its already too late now.

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My council is in a similar situation financially, and are looking to sell properties. I did not attend the town hall meeting last night, but I had friends that did. One of the slides was the 2019 cost per camper for the 4 council camps. Let's just say the data is HEAVILY skewed against one local camp.

They included a $50,000 new  road into the camp in "Maintenance" when it should have been a capital expense. The old road was washed out and caused the camp to be inoperable for 6 months.

Second the council only used the 2019 camp attendance. Since that camp was closed for 6 months, there were no day camps, weekend camp outs, or district camporees. So the attendance was much lower than usual.

Council is trying to make it appear the camp is burden.But what is ironic is if they used the past 3-5 year data, the camp is the most used, and least costly camp. In fact the camp brings n more money than needed to support itself. It is the only council camp that Cubs can go boating at since the other camps are on rivers. And because of its location, a major metropolitan area is within 45 minutes of the camp. It's just the metro area is in another council, for the moment.

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On 7/20/2020 at 5:47 PM, RememberSchiff said:

Pine Tree Council had a board vote Thursday night to sell the 75-year-old Camp Bomazeen in Belgrade, Maine .

Pine Tree Council had earlier formed an emergency task force to address its financial problems but the task force concluded that unless the camp is sold, council would be out of money in a matter of months. The ongoing coronavirus pandemic has decimated the council’s ability to raise money for Scouting activities, officials said.

Matt Klutzaritz, Scout executive and CEO of the Raymond-based Pine Tree Council, said it was a difficult decision and they understand the move will make some loyal Camp Bomazeeners upset. But it’s necessary to keep the organization, and Scouting, going in the council’s region of the state, he said.

https://www.centralmaine.com/2020/07/18/historic-camp-bomazeen-in-belgrade-to-be-sold-by-boy-scouts-council-in-dire-financial-straits/

To use the quote from Blazing Saddles - 

We've got to protect our phony-baloney jobs, gentlemen.  We must do something about this immediately, immediately, immediately!

Often times is seems the Councils are more interested with staying in business than serving youth.  Rather than figuring out how to do it more efficiently, just sell stuff and raise fees.

 

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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, scotteg83 said:

Once November hits, without incoming money, they will not longer be able to pay bills, salaries (limited staffing) and expenses, and will fold.

Then fold.  Put the camp in a trust and fold.  The camp will be missed.  The council won't.

Edited by David CO

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Their web site shows they have 4 camps in the council.  Don't know anything about any of them but the 35% reduction in youth takes the total youth to right at 2000.   Hard to see how they can maintain that many properties. 

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On 7/22/2020 at 11:27 AM, David CO said:

Then fold.  Put the camp in a trust and fold.  The camp will be missed.  The council won't.

Correct me if I am wrong, but if the council folds, national steps in, and sells everything that's left to square up any debt.

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On 7/22/2020 at 12:36 PM, PACAN said:

Their web site shows they have 4 camps in the council.  Don't know anything about any of them but the 35% reduction in youth takes the total youth to right at 2000.   Hard to see how they can maintain that many properties. 

And there is the big factor.  Most councils are luckily to keep up with 1 camp, let alone 4. 

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