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I just took on the position in our Troop as Treasurer and unfortunately, I do not really exactly what this position involves so I am looking for some guidance. What I received from the last treasurer was a bunch of handwritten information with her own coding method, receipts and a check register that has never been balanced. The only item that I can understand/read is how much money is in each of the Scout Accounts, which from my understanding is really one account (Troop Account); however the Scouts are just separated from the Troop account. I know the troop does not have money to purchase a program, which would make it easier and unfortunately, I know how to use Excel; however do not know how to program it to automatically calculate. I guess I need help on all areas of what a Treasurer does. I was told by another Troop that the first thing I need to put together a budget ASAP for the year. That is a little hard to do given I cant read most of what the Treasurer gave me and I am not sure all the areas of what should be included in this budget. Any input would be greatly appreciated.

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Some thoughts

1. Go to the bank/credit union and get the troop's account statement, ASAP.

2. Change signature authorization card. Old treasurer off the list. Also it is good idea to require TWO authorization signatures.

3. Bring checkbook up to date. You may want new checks or transfer to a new account to get things under control.

4. Ask troop leadership questions, what fundraisers are there?, what troop dues?, what does rechartering cost?, how much do we spend on awards, how does the troop approve purchases (Sorry Scoutmaster cannot buy whatever he/she wants)? These questions are important as if the troop leadership is not on the same page regarding money, there will be trouble and if there is money trouble - the Treasurer is on the hot seat. Everyone is nice to you when they want a check, not so nice when you turn them down. Make the troop's money policies known - all on the same page.

5. Ask Troop Chairman for a budget-planning meeting. Your troop may have never operated under a budget rather just fund-raise, pay as you go. This is not recommended as program time is lost to numerous bake sales, car washes, yard sales...

6. Paper ledgers still work.


Thanks for volunteering. Remember these tribulations when you hand over the troop books, in good order, to your "trained" successor in the distant future.


My $0.02 (my authorization limit)


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RS gave great advice. Also look at past treasurer reports from the committee if any.


One thing about 2 signatures, make sure you have a minimum of 3 authorized ( you never know when someone is out of town, in the hospital, etc) and that NO ONE is related. That's important b/c avoiding a husband-wife team can prevent any appearance of impropriety, and avoid possible headaches.

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Thank you Remember Schiff!

I did go to the bank with the prior Treasurer and switched everything over to me, just received my first bank statement last week and only 1 deposit and 4 checks were done so I think I can get that part under control. I am the only signer on the account, who would you recommend would be the second signer?


The troop has never done any budget planning meeting and everyone writes check whenever they want and floats money all the time. Seems like they fly by the seat of their pants, so to speak. I have never seen the Scouts have a budget for food when they camp, nor the advancement chair when he buys patches etc. I was under the assumption that anything that needs to be purchased has to be approved by the committee. The only fundraising that I know of is for popcorn and that money goes to their Scout accounts, which would mean that the Troop would be doing all activities etc. with our Scout dues for 22 Scouts. We pay $150 per scout which is $3300 a year, I could be wrong, but that does not seem like much for a year for all the activities they do. The Troop Chairman is new; she just came over from Cub Scouts and has a hard time making thing stick. I guess I really dont know what I have the right to do or say, and it seems like everyone wants to try and pacify everyone. I went to the Scout Shop to find some specifics on this position and could not find much, however they were out of a lot of items.


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I agree with signatures. We have 5 authorized: CubMaster, Committee Chair, Treasurer, Asst Treasurer, and COR


Checks require at least 2 signatures, and just in case somebody isn't available ( out of town, away at work, sick, etc...) we can still write important checks .


I'd recomment either switching banks or creating a new account entirely.


Open a new account and start depositing all new money there. Don't close out the old account for a few months ..just to make sure all ckecks have cleared, account is current at bank, etc.


You may not ever fifure out what went where due to record keeping, but in a month or two, you will know how much $$$ you have - wether it's the right amount or not.


One more thing we instituted just this year: Leaders are authorized to spend up to $25.00 (without prior committee/leadership authorization) per month for a PACK FUNCTION.


Basically meaning if we have a pack get together such as a cookout and run short on drinks, ice, hamburger buns,or whatever, instead of trying to get a check or petty cash, a leader can just run to the store and buy what is needed and turn in a receipt for reimbursment.


But it has to be FOR THE PACK, not any den or just individuals.


Every penny over $25.oo is considered a donation. :)


Again,this is without leadership or committee authorization.


(edit for)


It may be obvious,but by leadership or committee authorization,I mean having a meeting and Comm and leaders voting on itr.(This message has been edited by scoutfish)

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Sounds like the federal government!!


Units should have job descriptions for each leadership position. Again so everyone is on the same page - another thing to add to your To-Do list. Googling, you can quickly find other units that have posted job descriptions. I found this list from



Treasurer Filled


The Troop Treasurer maintains all troop finances, collects dues and fees, and pays troop bills. Appointed by the Committee Chair and serves at the satisfaction of the Committee Chair and the Troop Committee.


Reports to: Committee Chair



# Handles all troop funds. Pay all bills on recommendation of the Scoutmaster and authorization of the Troop Committee.

# Help the Committee Chairman and the Scoutmaster establish a sound financial program for the Troop with a Troop budget plan.

# Provides a treasurers report at each Troop Committee meeting.

# Maintains a written budget for Troop expenses and provides account statements as requested.

# Prepares financial records for annual audit.

# Maintains the Troop savings and checking accounts, and keeps appropriate records related to troop funds.

# Supervise Scout Accounts, tracks individual Scout camp fund accounts.

# Work with Re-charter Coordinator to collect and record annual dues.

# Work with Fund Raising Coordinator to account for monies earned during fund raisers and track scout account credits earned.

# Work with Membership Coordinator to process registration of new scouts and adult leaders.

# Work with Outdoor/Activity Coordinator to make necessary payments for camping/activity reservations.

# Collect Summer Camp payments and remit funds to council office for camp reservations/payments in a timely manner.

# Needs to attend most troop meetings.

# Coordinates the payment of all bills.

# Provides a list of Scouts who are delinquent in their camp fund or are behind in payment of dues at each committee meeting.

# Works with the fundraising committee with respect to the placement of incoming funds.

# Critiques Troop expenditures and purchases.

# Works with the Troop Scribe to coordinate and compare Scout trip payment status.

# Report to the chartered organization as needed on the financial condition of the Troop.

# Support the policies of the BSA




Other signers? Scout Master and Troop Committee chairperson, assuming as Eagle92 mentioned, that they are unrelated (excellent point).


With your Troop Committee membership new and maybe a little unsure, your District Commissioner should be dropping-in to offer advice and training. But you can phone, e-mail, attend next District Round Table to jump start that process.


Another $0.02(This message has been edited by RememberSchiff)

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RS has given you great advice. I commend one other thing: You are someone the Troop Scribe (or whichever youth member does the legwork of collecting money in your Troop) will report to and learn from. Give him something simple he can use for collecting funds from the youth that get turned into you.


You will have about 4-5 busy cycles a year:


- Rechartering payments (both funds in and one pretty big check out)

- Camp down payment.

- Up to 3 Camp progress payments

- Midyear dues, if your Troop collects in 6 month cycles.

- Fundraisers


I wish you success!

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As a DE I had a unit with a husband-wife team signing off on everything. Was not good as the pack folded and no one knew where the money went, and they owed for popcorn. Council ended up eating the popcorn ( figuratively and literally).


When the wife became troop treasurer, I requested to be taken off the account. Made it interesting since I was the one buying all the advancement as I worked at the scout shop at the time.Aabout 1/2 the checks were made out to me to cover advancement and supplies, and I was extremely glad that either the SM or CC also had to sign off for reimbursement.

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Annual dues of $150? That is twice the highest amount of troop dues I have ever heard of. It is three times the amount of dues in "my" troop. I would have difficulty believing people would be willing to pay that... except for your implication that ALL of the money from fundraising (popcorn) goes into the Scouts' accounts. I have never heard of that either. With the various kinds of fundraising done in my troop, the amount that goes into the Scouts' accounts (though we don't call it that) ranges from about 20 percent (which to me is about right) to about one-third (which to me is too high.) I suppose that in a sense it balances out, but only if everybody sells their "fair share" of popcorn. Personally I think our way is better, because the dues and the fundraising work together to benefit the troop, rather than offsetting each other.


I know there are budget forms for troops, a Google search should turn one up.

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I would NOT recommend closing your troop's current bank account, and switching banks. There is absolutely no reason to go thru all of that.


Sheilab, the FIRST thing I would recommend that you do is to sit down with the former Treasurer, go over everything with her, and have her explain it to you. This is something you need to be able to understand.


You need to get a copy of the "Troop Committee Guidebook" from your Scout Shop, or order online from ScoutStuff, the National supply division.


The Treasurer's duties per the Troop Committee Guidebook -


Handle all troop funds. Pay bills on recommendation of the Scoutmaster and authorization of the troop committee.

Maintain checking and savings accounts.

Train and supervise the troop scribe in record keeping.

Keep adequate records in the "Troop/Team Record Book".

Supervise money-earning projects, including obtaining proper authorization.

Supervise the camp savings plan.

Lead in the preparation of the annual troop budget.

Lead the Friends of Scouting campaign.

Report to the troop committee at each meeting.


There is also a chapter on troop finances.


Here is a copy of "The Unit Budget Plan" which has been updated somewhat by Scouters from the Swan Creek District of the Erie Shores council -





You said you know how to use Excel, but not how to program it. Sorry, but you DON'T know how to use Excel. I would recommend you go to the Microsoft Office web site and look up Excel under the Support option. They have all sorts of helps there. You can also do a search for a budget template.



(This message has been edited by Scoutnut)

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RS gave you some good advise, let me enunciate a few points.


I am involved with other clubs, and can tell you from experience that issues with money (people misusing or misappropriating funds) is a sure path to an org's downfall.


* get a hold of ALL the old records (band statements, financials, etc).


* get a handle on the current bank account. Change signatures, make sure bank statements are going to you.


* start preparing a monthly financial report for the unit. This report should give your opening balance for the month, what money has come in and from what/who (dues paid by xx, fundraising from yy, etc), where all the money went (check #, for who/for what), and the closing balance. These reports should be kept by the treasurer in their records and by the committee secretary for the committee's overall records. These reports will be used for your annual audit.


* DO AN ANNUAL AUDIT. This audit should be done before a new treasurer takes over the position. NO, it does NOT need to be done by an accountant. Get 3-4 people from the group, NOT the treasurer, and review all the records. They just confirm that everything is ok.


* Work on a budget.


* NOTHING IS PAID OUT WITHOUT APPROVAL OF THE COMMITTEE. Doesn't matter if you're paying for something previously approved, before any check is cut, bring up the matter for the committee. This insures the group is aware of all financial matters, and puts this in the minutes of the meeting. With that, NO ONE should spend any money without FIRST getting approval. If someone things that more supplies are needed, and figures they can go buy them and get reimbursed WITHOUT prior approval, sorry, but thanks for the donation. First bring this before the group and get approval, including a limit on how much to spend. Also, require receipts.


* get a handle on these scout accounts. If you can't figure out Excel or something, get a ledger book and record them in that. I would record when any money is added to the scout account, and if any money is paid out, how much, when, and for what.



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I have been the troop treasurer for about 6 years. I use the TROOPLEDGER software program.This helps me keep track of every penny that come in and goes out.I print monthly updates that is shown at the committee meeting.Each parent can request his/her sons passbook balance. Don't reinvent the wheel.It is already here.

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I could most likely go into an exceedingly long diatribe about how to handle this that would most likely go above your head if you don't have any finance/accounting background. My recommendation in place of that is to listen to what others have been saying.


The only thing I will comment on is for the signatures. The BSA states that it should be the Treasurer, Secretary, Committee Chair, and Scoutmaster/Cubmaster. Scoutfish mentioning Asst. Treasurer (never had a committee large enough for that, lol) and CoR are good optionals.

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Boy there is some really good advice. I do agree that two of the same family should not have access to the account. My wife was our treasure and it was difficult since I was the SM.


I do agree with the annual audit.


I dont agree with having a pre approval for spending money. Unforeseen things pop up. We had a discretionary limit for unforeseen items. It still requires two signatures, just not a committee preapproval.


I think you will have to find your style of doing the job, but try to always consider the next person who takes your job. My wife counted that she had processed 40,000 checks in the eight years as the troop treasure, so it can take a lot of time and get out of control rather quickly. If you need to set some ground rules to maintain control, dont be afraid to approach the committee.




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"I dont agree with having a pre approval for spending money. Unforeseen things pop up. We had a discretionary limit for unforeseen items. It still requires two signatures, just not a committee preapproval."


Then be prepared for the issue of someone going off and spending a lot of money that others may not agree with (or feel it was too much). Hence the need for budgets and approval before spending money.


I know of groups that were torn apart because an officer decided to go make purchases without the approval of anyone else.


If you have a 'petty cash' fund with discretionary limits, make sure the limit are low enough to avoid issues, and it takes more then one person to spend from it. (which it sounds like you have).


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