Scouts-L Mail Archive for April of 1999: Re: Charter Organization Woes (Long)
Re: Charter Organization Woes (Long)
Tue, 20 Apr 1999 21:28:50 EDT
In a message dated 99-04-20 04:23:31 EDT, Bobbie Beatson wrote:
<< We have been chartered by the elementary school PTO for the last 17 years
although they were never involved.... We also have a new principal who
signed the charter papers.... ()were told by our Council Exec that we should
use our Charter
Org. tax-exempt number. When we requested the number from our PTO all heck
...I showed him the copy of the charter agreement he signed back in
December. On it, the Charter Organization agrees to several items besides
just providing a place to meet.
I was dismissed with the comment that the matter would now have to be taken
up at the next PTO meeting which is May 4 and that they would let us know the
Now I'm afraid that they're just going to have their little PTO Board
meeting and say they can't comply with the items on the Charter Agreement and
that'll be the end of us.
What would be the best course of action at this point? >>
Deja vu! Not only did one of my packs lose the sponsorship of the school
PTA, but one of our professionals (now out of Scouting, fortunately) can take
a good share of the blame. Get in touch with your DE immediately; you're
probably going to need a new Chartered Organization when the current charter
PTAs/PTOs want to limit their liability. You have to remember that the
PTA/PTO is not a part of the school system and is probably not covered by the
school system's liability insurance. Therefore, any action that the PTA/PTO
takes can expose it, and its officers, to liability claims and lawsuits.
This is why the national PTA has suggested that its member organizations drop
their sponsorship of BSA units. From what I've been able to discorver,
BSA-supplied insurance covers members and guests of BSA units, but does not
provide coverage to the organizations that sponsor units; they are expected
to have their own liability coverage.
And, depending on how your PTO's bylaws are written, the principal of the
school is not a member of the PTO so (s)he shouldn't have been signing the
charter renewal as either IH or CR. The IH is the president of your PTO and
the board appoints a member of the PTO as CR. Somewhere along the line, the
CR moved/quit/simply dropped out of sight and the PTO board at the time
didn't care, and you're now left holding the bag.
Not very encouraging, am I? What happened to the unit that dropped the
pack? Our DE found them a church as a chartering organization, and almost
directly across the street from the school, too, so they're still in the same
neighborhood. And where do they hold pack meetings? At the school, of
course! The current principal sees the value in the Scouting program and the
city school district allows us, and several other "outside" organizations, to
use the school building.
Keep me posted on your situation and I'll see if I can offer any
suggestions that your professional and commissioner staff might not think of.
Ralph V. Balfoort, Unit Commissioner
I used to be a Beaver.... (NE III-135)
In the Beaver Patrol as a Scout, too,
and now Ktemaque (Beaver) Chapter,
Haudenosaunee Lodge #19, OA