Dear LEC Family,
Over the past few days, you may have heard reference to a financial restructuring plan being discussed within the Boy Scouts of America’s national organization. I have been in regular contact with our national organization and also took part in a national conference call with the chief scout executive and can assure you that no such decisions have been made, and no actions have been taken. These considerations are merely due diligence and part of good governance. They will share more information when able.
As with any organization, including the three former councils that are the Lake Erie Council, there are times when we need to reexamine ourselves at all levels to remain financially stable, functional, and mission-driven as part of our own governance responsibilities.
Here are a few bullet points that can help to explain our relationship with the National Council and how they react to the issue of abuse, etc.:
The National Council, BSA is a separate and distinct non-profit corporation from any local BSA Council. The Lake Erie Council is incorporated in Ohio and will not be affected should the National Council restructure its liabilities. The Lake Erie Council owns and controls our three camps, our unit service center, our bank funds, and investments. Our funds and properties are governed by our board of directors.
Our Council receives no funding from the national organization; in fact, we pay fees to National BSA as a part of our charter agreement and for specific services. Also, all registration fees are sent directly to the national office.
Charitable contributions given to our Council stay in our Council to support delivery of our own local program and services to our Scouts.
Nothing is more important than the safety and protection of children in our Scouting programs. It is our top priority.
The BSA is committed to the social and moral responsibility to fairly compensate victims who suffered abuse during their time in Scouting, and the deep care and concern for all victims of child sex abuse and the proactive steps to help victims heal and prevent future abuse.
The BSA stresses that at no time in BSA history has the organization knowingly allowed a sexual predator to work with youth, and will always seek to act swiftly when alerted to abuse allegations.
The BSA remains committed to communicating transparently and stated there are no imminent actions or immediate decisions expected by BSA in light of the WSJ news story.
The Lake Erie Council is on a strong trajectory and has been working for two years to position itself for long-term sustainability with a new and relevant service and outreach model designed to galvanize the experience of our members. We have so much to celebrate and be thankful for today. Our work is far from over. 2019 is our year to capitalize on what we’ve successfully built together so far. Families can count on us for fun and adventure, for character-building life skills, for a safe haven, and for their preparation as our future community leaders.
Together, we can and will create the future that we want for our children and a world that is made better by a movement that knows our WHY. Why? BECAUSE CHARACTER COUNTS!
I am positive that our National Council will navigate the difficult waters that many organizations face over a century of existence. In Northern Ohio, we stand ready to help and we will continue our primary focus on bringing high-quality Boy Scouts of America programs to over 14,000 Scouts in each of the communities that we serve. You can read through the frequently asked questions and the original message from our chief scout executive below.
Stay the course. Don’t give up! We are headed in the right direction – just ask the 2,632 young people who have joined us this fall! They, along with our already existing members, are counting on you! They’re counting on me! Let’s deliver on our promise!
As always, please don’t hesitate to reach out to me with any questions, comments or concerns.
Yours in service to families and communities,
Marc J. Ryan
Scout Executive / CEO
Lake Erie Council, Boy Scouts of America