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5yearscouter

more rules for eagle projects+

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So I was just about to come to Richard's defense and point out that he's likely just the messenger, not the person who came up with this stuff, when I followed his link to Scouting magazine and learned that, lo and behold, he probably is one of the folks that has come up with these guidelines.

 

I was particularly struck by this one quote from his Scouting Magazine response:

"For projects like building a pinewood derby car or a service project involving construction, The BSA cannot support youth using power tools, as these activities are not currently set up to teach safety. Also, there is no current way to validate the qualification of adults who could supervise youth and power tools."

 

Now I know there are a bunch of packs that provide workdays for Scouts and parents to work on their pinewood derby cars, but most pinewood derby cars are still being built by the Cub Scout and a member of his family (dad, mom, brother, uncle, grandfather, aunt, etc.). So when I read a sentence that says "there is no current way to validate the qualification of adults who could supervise youth and power tools", I can't help but read it as "we don't trust parents to teach their kids how to use power tools", even if that isn't an intended message.

 

The worst part of this is that some of this makes a lot of sense. I've pulled folks from excavation accidents where proper bracing wasn't used, and the chances of anyone needing a trench greater than 4' in depth in the Scouts is pretty much close to zero, so why even bother carrying excavation safety equipment. The fall protection requirements make sense too - it's one thing to climb a ladder, it's a whole different story to stand and work on a ladder - I know we do it all the time at home, but its really not unusual to see homeowners being brought to the hospital during painting season or gutter cleaning season after they either fell off the ladder or, more likely, the ladder fell away under them as they were reaching for that on little spot that they didn't want to climb down and reposition the ladder for.

 

Chainsaws operated by 16 year olds? Yeah, maybe not such a good idea, but keeping a 14 year old from using a gas powered lawn mower, most of which now include some form of dead man safety switch that shuts the motor down instantly when let go? Is it any wonder folks shake their heads?

 

 

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Remind me to haul out his "aspirational side-effect" quotes the next time Tahawk pisses and moans about Merit Badge standards. :)

 

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Funny part is a scroll saw is used in a Technology Education in NY State public schools at the middle school level (6th thru 8th grade for 12-15 years)... *scratching head.

 

OSHA pops up in schools too. Accidents are on the RISE because people are not trained or taught the proper way to use equipment or supervised. In today's sue happy world it isn't surprising that BSA has to put prevention in place with documents like this.

 

As the wheels, doesn't surprised me its being banned since too many think and use it as a toy... *sighs We shouldn't be blaming the ban on BSA but rather on those before us that brought the need to put this ban in the first place.

 

 

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Calico,

 

I regards to the height thing, remember it affects pioneering projects. NOwadays pioneering projects are limited to 5 feet, according to the document. I guess they took out the "inspected by a NCS certified COPE director and each participant must wear a helmet, harness and be connected to a belay line" or whatever the exact language was since COPE taught you how to climb and play ont he high elements, NOT do lashings.

 

 

I remember as a youth building 20-30 foot towers and creating a Bosun's Chair.

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The thing which bothers me as much as anything is I THOUGHT BSA, at least on the program side of things, was moving to a more rational apporach to evaluating risk, developing program materials to mitigate risk and opening the program to activities like ATV and PWC use. Unfortunately, this load of houey looks like we're headed for more lists of mindless Thou Shall Nots.

 

How much better would a real safety program be which TEACHES the scouts how to use these tools and provides adults to tools to provide that education and safely supervise their use? Between troop service projects, conservations projects, OA work day and Eagle projects, I'll bet Scouts spend more time using these tools than they spend rock climbing. As a life skill, are our boys more likely to use a lawn mower or go rock climbing. But compare this finger wagging approach to tool use to the enormous program we have for teaching climbing safety.

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Twocub

 

A rational approach you say, more like the "National BSA Knucklehead Approach to Safe Scouting and Protecting National's Butt". Lets see National has "dumbed down" the boy scout programs and advancement, de-emphasized the outdoor program, forbidden certain fun activities that a scouting unit is allowed to do (laser tag,paintball, etc.), and now determining the appropriate age for using a wheelbarrow and tools. Those guys at National obviously do not have enough real work to do. Instead of developing a solid and effective advertising and promotion campaign they come up with this crap instead to justify their six and seven figure salaries.

 

IMO, National has a lot to account for in their total mismanagement of the BSA, however there is no one they are accountable to so the incompetency continues on unchecked. Yeah Bob now is a good time for you to retire before the you know what finally hits the fan.

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I was flipping thru the current copy of Scouting magazine and what do I spy? Boys pulling a four wheel cart like we use at Jambo, scout camp and troops. Oh my, someone might get hurt!

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As an additional data point, one Scoutmaster informed of the new standards was extremely pleased.

 

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What compounds some of this nonsense is the local Eagle Board making stuff up. We have a candidate going in to get his project approved and he was told he can't use the money in his Scout account to help fund it. Is is ok to solicits donations from relatives however.

 

So the message is it's ok to have dad write a check but not to use funds he's actually earned?

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Mike,

 

 

WHAT?!?!?!?!?!?! That is ridiculous and really goes against what Scouting has traditionally support as noted in previous editions of the BSHBs: the scout supports himself. From buying his own uniforms and paying for his own trips, to funding their projects.

 

 

 

But I do have an idea.

 

Have the troop write a check for dad and then have dad write a check for the exact amount.

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The Scout account is curious. I would think it would be a troop call rather then an Eagle board call. The troop should state what a scout account can be used for.

 

I know the troops around us are trained though to make sure the money goes to things that are well defined scouting, scout camp, scout events, uniforms, Handbooks etc.. But should not allow the scout to purchase things like tents, sleeping bags or pocket knifes. Difference is the non-profit tax exempt status. You put yourself in danger of violating it for your scout unit and your charter org. if the purchases are made for items that can be used in and out of scouting..

 

So using your scout account money should to do a service project be OK in not disrupting the tax exempt status, but it is buying non-scouting items (Which we advise our troops not to do..)

 

I believe this may be well intended misunderstanding.. Someone learned "use account only for scouting".. Without thinking through if these non-scouting purchases would still classify and tax-exempt purchases..

 

If the use of the Scout account was an after thought, it is good thinking outside the box. But if the money was placed in the scout account with the idea of using it as your banking system during the Eagle project, this is not really a good idea as you are mixing money.. What is allocated for the Service project is no longer the scouts (or if a parent donates then no longer the parents.) Or if you have a car wash, it is not the troops or the scouts.. All that money is now officially the benifactor of the Service project.

 

So if a parent donates $300 to the project for anticipated costs, and a donation is made after that lowering the actual cost to $150, the paren does not get the $150 back. It is now money belonging to the Service project benefactor..

 

If any of the money in the Scout account is half Service project, and half scout personal, the mixing of the money is not good. If you want to use it, then (and you have not Eagle Board making up rules).. The best thing I would think would be to get permission from the troop, if permitted, figure out the sum you are donating to the other non-profit group, pull the money and put it into your newly setup accounting system for the service project. That way whatever is not used is then given to the other non-profit group.

 

Of course I believe, you as a parent can state you will donate "the lumber", rather the $300 for the project (which is to buy the lumber).. And this allows you to pay either $150 to $300 for it, and keep money not spent on "the lumber".. But, it would get hairy if the scout account is used to buy "the Lumber" then "the nails", then "the pizza", and don't even think about adding to the scout account money just earned from the car wash for this service project so then you can buy a few more items.. If you do that your scout account is a really mixed mess..

 

Does any of that make sense?.. Or am I just rambling.. I am no accountant, and I am myself just trying to come to terms with the changes to the new Eagle project. I will not be surprised if someone were now to tell me I have it all wrong. But, this is through talking with about 3 other people on the subject and now trying to include money from a scout account into it.

 

 

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Just back from my daily trip to Lowe's and took a minute to look at the large, flashy Pinewood Derby display sponsored by Dremel. It's been in the stores for months, but I've not really paid much attention. I wasn't sure if it were a generic, "pine car racer" deal or an official, BSA approved Pinewood Derby deal, which it is.

 

Can't wait to see what happens to BSA's licensing agreement when Dremel finds out their product is banned for use by Cubs.

 

Anyway, Moose, I think you're over-thinking this. If the troop allows Scouts to use scout account money for EPs, the kid shows up with a receipt from the lumber yard and the troop cuts a check. Simple. The council has nothing to do with it. Frankly, I'd tell them to pound sand -- they no longer have the ability to make rules like that. The new rules call for the troop (or the beneficiary) to hold the money raised for EPs anyway. What's the difference between that and using a Scout account? If you don't want to get into a spat with the advancement committee, have your Scouts say their parents will be paying for the materials, which is likely true. In most cases a parent will pay for the materials. That they subsiquently get reimbursed from the Scout's troop account is no one's business.

 

I also think you're off-base about the contribution part. If in a Scout's proposal his parents pledge $300 toward the project but the actual amount comes in below $300, I don't think the parents have an obligation to make a donation to the beneficiary for the difference. I would consider the parents' participation on a "not to exceed" basis. Neither is it necessary for them to write a $300 check up front -- they simply cover the actual cost of the materials at the time they are purchased.

 

None of which has anything to do with the Scout's troop account. My reading of the regs, and what we have been told by our council training committee, is the money only has to go into the troop account or turned over to the beneficiary if it is raised publicly, through car washes or donut sales or a similar event which trades on the name of the BSA or the beneficiary. If a project is being funded privately (i.e.: by the Scout, his family, his troop account, or the troop in general) I'd let the money stay with those donors and ask them to only pay for purchases as they are made.

 

This whole area seems to be a weakness of the new policies, IMO. Seems like a case where BSA tried to solve a problem by dumping it on the units or beneficiaries. I wonder how often there was really a problem of a Scout misappropriating money for his EP? And what's going to happen when a kid turns over the proceeds from his fundraisers to the beneficiary which unfortunately experiences "a cash flow problem" about the time the Scout wants to finish his project?

 

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Like I said, I still am in the process of understanding this all myself. I just heard enough to think they had complicated that process.

 

I did though know, it was not up to the Eagle Board to approve use of the Scout Account, but of the troop. The troop could have a policy of using only for Events and Summer camp and not allow purchases of any type of Equipment. Or simply not agree to the funds going to the Eagle project.

 

Still think if you are using the Scout Account for personal & Eagle project, not a good idea to start dumping the proceeds from the car wash that was promoted to be raising funds for specifically this project into it.

 

Also still think someone on the board may be giving advice due to their troop having a specific policy that Scout accounts can only be used for approved scouting activities/items, due to the tax laws..

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Can't wait to see what happens to BSA's licensing agreement when Dremel finds out their product is banned for use by Cubs.

 

Yah, talk about da right hand not knowin' what the left hand is doin'!

 

This is the other thing that I think gets us into trouble, eh? When we start suggestin' to large groups of people that the products or services offered by others are unsafe. I would think any business would and should rightly object to such a characterization.

 

Beavah

 

 

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