The Board of Directors of the Orange County Council took a difficult but necessary step for the Council to remain financially healthy and able to continue to deliver the extraordinary Scouting program we have come to expect. This action at its core is designed to assist the Council to meet the needs of increasing operating costs.
The mandatory California minimum wage plan to increase labor costs through 2022, has significantly impacted non-profits. It is forecasted that council labor costs from our exempt to our seasonal employees will rise 50% by 2022. These costs, added to the significant increases in general operating expenses have caused considerable concern moving forward.
Over the past few years, income from activities and product sales has been relatively flat. Contributions to family Friends of Scouting continues to reach all-time lows. Less than 17% of families made a gift in 2017. To date, less than 11.8% of families have made a gift in 2018. While the board of directors is taking steps to reduce expenses without jeopardizing program delivery, the Council is being forced to look at other ways to meet the Council budget.
- Less than 1 in 5 families give to Friends of Scouting.
- The Council spends over $300 per youth to deliver the Scouting program for a year.
- The Council does not have the necessary family FOS support to make up for decreases in United Way, corporate, and foundation funding at a time when our state mandated costs continue to rise.
- We cannot raise registration fees or attach a program fee; dictated by National BSA bylaws.
- Operating costs to do business continues to rise such as in occupancy, supplies, insurance, utilities, travel, and employee compensation and benefits.
Effective January 1, 2018, all new youth and adults will be asked to remit a $12 insurance recovery fee in addition to the BSA annual registration fee of $33. This new fee is pro-rated at $1 per month. $33 will go to National BSA organization and the additional $12 will remain in the Council. The fee is called an Insurance Recovery Fee and as the name implies, all funds collected will be used by the Council to defray the costs the Council incurs to provide a variety of annual insurances with liability insurance being the most expensive.
- The fee applies only to new members recruited in 2018 and to all members beginning with the 2019 recharter cycle.
- Families using the online application tool for registration will no longer be able to use the credit card option for payment. All fees need to come in via check or the unit can give permission to withdraw from unit account appropriate fees.
- Insurance is provided to all members include accident and sickness, property and liability.
- This fee does not apply to members registered in units chartered by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, Explorer Posts and Scoutreach.
It is not the desire of the Orange County Council to impose fees, but the council must ensure the financial stability and stewardship for those members we serve now and in the future. We are forever committed to delivering the finest resources, tools, facilities and customer service needed for our leaders to deliver a quality program to more youth. Our families deserve no less.