Organizing A Ship
William H. Sills (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Mon, 25 Aug 1997 09:42:21 -0500
There have been reports that some local councils refuse to charter
ships. That probably stems from the deteriorated financial condition of
those local councils. Many, many local councils are "hurting"
financially. Hence, part of the impetus for BSA's push to force mergers.
Allowing your local council to own your vessels and other assets AND
making them pay for your large vessel insurance could cause problems for
both Sea Scouting and your local council.
Our local council is only a 52 BUT it is very strong financially!
Still, our squadron has a charitable trust and a non-stock and
not-for-profit corporation. Both are recognized by the federal
government under IRS Code 501(c)(3) and by the laws of the State of
Wisconsin as "tax deductible" charitable organizations. We accept
donations of cash, boats, trailers, sails and other assets to the trust.
The trust assigns title to the assets to the corporation. The
corporation distributes the boats and other assets to our ships for use.
The corporation is also a second chartering organization of one of our
The above method allows us to absolutely control ALL of our assets.
It further frees our local council of the administrative burdens and
financial pressures that ships otherwise place on their local council.
Our method also allows us to ensure that donated boats will be used by
Sea Scouts. Otherwise, they would very likely be sold to benefit other,
non-Sea Scout, programs contrary to the wishes of the donors. Further,
there can be no "horror stories" about having our boats sold out from
Costs are nominal. Wisconsin charges $75.00 to organize a
corporation, the IRS charges $100.00 to process their "Application For
Recognition Of Exemption Under Section 501(c)(3)", and you may need to
have an attorney draw the Trust's Articles. Our annual costs are $40.00
for corporation renewal and $15.00 for Wisconsin Charitable Organization
annual fees. We must make an annual Wisconsin corporate filing and an
annual State financial filing. The IRS requires no filing from the
corporation and only an occasional one from the trust.
Remember, if we help the BSA, the BSA will help us and that will
help our kids!