scouts-l Mail Archive for November of 1999: Private Camping "Policy" (Was Re: FW: The NetCommish Website)
MAJ) Mike Walton (settummanque, the blackeagle (blackeagle@SCOUTER.NET
Sun Nov 21 1999 - 13:18:07 CST
I changed the subject line to the above so that those following it can find
it and respond to it easier; I don't think Mike Bowman would mind).
The topic is based upon a posting that Mike Bowman received on his website
and which I responded to in part. In the gentleman's posting to the
"NetCommish", he stated that he was seriously concerned that the
"professionals in the BSA" is reducing the amount of camping by some new
"policy" which stated that the BSA would no longer allow Scouting units to
camp on private property. I responded as Mike Bowman also responded that as
far as we're aware of, the BSA has talked about it some but NO DECISION has
been made or recommended. Just talk.
I then outlined some of the reasons, based on conversations about this
matter copied to me over the last couple of years, which would tend to move
a Council toward such a decision. One of them, I admit, sounds really funny
but I included it only to demonstrate how such a "urban legend" can indeed
"impact" the decision of a Council toward closing off Scout camping in all
but public and Scouting locations.
But the main issue -- that of "shutting Scouting off from privately owned or
controlled lands" -- is the focus here. What impact would this have on your
unit, district, Council?
Ted Burton wrote in part:
>I do think that individual councils based upon their own evaluation
>of their own resources, might well establish guidelines for written
>permission, and the like. A total ban on the use of private property
>would end Scouting in Texas, for there is no public domain in Texas.
>There are many other states in the east where federal property and
>state property is very limited in scope, and yet there are many
>landowners who welcome Scouts.
>I hope this is another Scouting urban legend. If it is not, I hope
>that the baby doesn't get tossed out with the bath water. Further, I
>would expect such a rule to be honored in the breach; it is not wise
>to enact a rule that few respect.
I hope so as well, Ted....like I stated, there's a lot of people providing
goodwill through the usage of their property or property they hold
in trust for others for Scouts and other groups to camp on occassionally.
I would really hope that this is an gross overreaction on the part of a local
Council concerned about being sued by landowners.
I don't understand why, however, if this was proven out to be a new
"direction" for the BSA (camping only on regional camping facilities or on
Council or public land), why this would end the program in several parts of
America. Can't Scouts in Texas utilize the public park system and federal
lands for camping? Or is it just the idea of convience and familiarity with
(MAJ) Mike L. Walton (settummanque, the blackeagle)
personal inquiries via firstname.lastname@example.org,
blackeagle@SCOUTER.net or email@example.com
professional inquiries via firstname.lastname@example.org
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