Important and time sensitive Message for Suwannee River Area Council, BSA Scouting Community
Re: National BSA Registration Fee increase planned for January 1, 2020
The Office of the Chief Scout Executive, with the National Council, Boy Scouts of America has made Local Council Scout Executives across the country aware that the National Service Center is evaluating the growing cost of delivering the Scouting program – and that an increase to membership fees is impending.
As a result, I wanted to make you aware and share with you what we know at this point.
From the Chief’s statement: Because of the growing cost, “…a vision team of volunteers and staff from across the country is considering the best way forward that will likely require us to implement a national membership fee increase for youth members and adult leaders as of January 1, 2020. This prospective change is being driven by the significant cost increase of the liability insurance we must carry to cover all official Scouting activities.
We do not know the amount of the increase at this time since this requires National Executive Committee input and approval.
Please know that we are only considering this change out of necessity, and we are committed to ensuring that all youth can experience the character-building benefits of Scouting regardless of their financial situation. That is why, in anticipation of a likely increase, we are working to establish a National donor-funded BSA Registration Assistance Fund to provide financial support to those who need it. This fund will be in addition to the many existing local council and unit membership assistance funds.
We recognize the timing of this likely fee increase creates challenges as units have already begun collecting fees for their 2020 registration renewal process. We sincerely apologize and hope you understand that we would not be pursuing this path were it not absolutely necessary to ensure the BSA can continue carrying out its mission to serve youth. We are committed to supporting you through this process and are making necessary adjustments to the online rechartering system to ensure units can carry out the normal yearly process with as few issues as possible.
We recognize this is neither easy information to hear, nor to convey, but we want to be transparent as we have information to share so you can prepare your units appropriately.
We commit to providing the new registration fee no later than October 23, 2019, which would take effect on January 1, 2020.”
To further explain, here is a brief FAQ.
FAQ: 2020 Membership Fee Changes- from the Boy Scouts of America- National Council
Who is guiding the process regarding membership fee changes?
A vision team of volunteers and staff from across the country is identifying viable options and considering the best way forward as we evaluate the growing cost of delivering the Scouting program.
What do you expect the new fee to be in 2020?
We do not know the amount of the expected increase at this time since this requires National Executive Committee input and approval.
Why is this happening now?
The expected membership fee increase is the direct result of a significant increase in the cost of liability insurance that the National Council, BSA must carry to cover all official Scouting activities.
How will this impact the current rechartering process?
The online rechartering process will officially open as planned on November 1, 2019 for January recharters.
What should units do if they have already collected 2020 membership fees?
Unfortunately, units will need to collect the additional funds from families once the new amount is known.
When will the organization make a decision about the 2020 membership fee increase?
We commit to providing the new registration fee no later than October 23, 2019.
As soon as additional information is available and/or details confirmed, we will share them.
Unit recharter packets will be distributed on Thursday, October 10th at Roundtable (Faith Presbyterian Church- 2200 Meridian Rd, Tallahassee).
Thank you for your volunteer leadership. Thank you for providing the Scouting program to young people – and thank you for delivering our mission.
Terry Whitaker | Scout Executive/CEO