Re: Ownership of Vehicle
Ted Burton (tedbrtn@CYBERHIGHWAY.NET)
Sun, 3 Nov 1996 06:54:39 -0700
At 18:46 -07001, E. Carroll Hale II wrote thus [I likely cut a lot out]:
>ALL "troop owned" equipment is actually owned by the
>Here it's mandatory for drivers of all vehicles carrying more
>than 15 passengers (I believe this includes the driver).
I believe the rule is 15 or more, not more than 15, and yes it includes the
driver. It applies to any vehicle capable of holding two adults and a
The ownership question is a little more dicey. The "ownership" of a troop
is a little more complex a question than might appear at first blush.
Obviously, slavery having been abolished in the United States, the people
of the troop, adults and youth, are not "owned" by the charter partner. In
any motor vehicle title state, the vehicle belongs to whomever is named on
A troop is in fact and functions as an unincorporated association of
Scouts, Scouters, and active parents. That association can own property.
Mind you, I said *can* own property, *not* that they are supposed to. So
also the charter partner is perfectly capable of owning property. We are
thinking the charter partner ought to own the property, but the property
will in fact and law belong to whomever paid for it or to the entity to
whom the payer donated the property. If a kind merchant donates property to
the troop, what he understands to be an group made up of Scouts, Scouters,
and active parents, then it belongs to that association. That is the law of
property, as apposed to the proper way to do things as contained in the BSA
rules, regulations, and recommendations.
Many troops have checking accounts in which dues and gifts and fundraiser
proceeds are deposited. The people paying that money to the troop think
they are paying the *troop* as a thing, it probably never crossing their
minds that they are advancing funds to a church or pta, or whatever. It
likely that unincorporated association of Scouts, Scouters, and active
parents to which the person paying the funds would say the money is being
paid, were they asked. Indeed, many would give money to the troop who would
think twice about giving money to the charter partner. In my case, they
would cheerfully give money to the Troop, hesitate to send it to the
Council, and decline to give it to the charter partner (the US Forest
So it is not necessarily what the BSA book says is supposed to happen, that
actually does happen. The BSA rules do not change the contract which in
fact is being made and between whom it is made, when it is made, for the
purchase of a vehicle, a tent, or a box of matches. Many Scout leaders, and
most parents, would be unaware of any concept that the charter partner owns
the camping gear, for example. So when they go to buy camping gear with
fundraiser proceeds, what do you think they think they are doing? They
think they are buying for the 'troop'. If that's what they think they are
doing, that is in fact what they are doing.
So when we say a troop is owned by a charter partner, the only property
that in fact unalterably belongs to the charter partner is only the
intangible property, the 'business name' of 'Troop xx,' and thus the right
of this association to call itself Troop xx; and the right therefore to
apply for badges and awards and to wear uniforms that say BSA and Troop xx.
That must not be confused with some automatic vesting of title to tangible
goods in the charter partner, if that was not the intent of the buyer and
seller at the time.
Sorry if the legalese was too much for anyone, and it sure doesn't make
much of a story around the campfire.
Anyway, who cares, so long as the boys have a good time, learn to live the
Oath and Law, and learn to function smoothly as a group. All else is
Thank you for listening.
=-=-=-=-=-=- II <<<=-=<I=-=<<< II -=-=-=-=-=-=
Alappiechsu Wiechcheu, Wolf Who Talks Fast
Tukarica Lodge 266, Chapter Adviser, Hemene Chapter
Ore-Ida Council 106, D. Eagle Rep., Pack 246 CM, Troop 246 MC
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