If you are reading this, you probably have just been asked to recharter your unit and are full of questions
You also may be a little anxious, wondering “what in the world have I gotten myself into?” because everyone else was so relieved when you agreed to do it.
RELAX. Unit recharter has earned a reputation as being difficult… but it doesn’t have to be.
If there is a hard part, it’s that some rules must be followed for each member and that you have to finish on time.
Answers to Common Questions
What is a unit?
That’s the pack, troop, crew, or ship to which you belong. You’re a part of a district, and each district is a part of our council. A unit always has a Unit Leader who is responsible for seeing that a program is delivered to the youth members. The Unit Leader has a title like Advisor, Cubmaster, Scoutmaster, or Skipper. A unit has at least three adults who serve as the Unit Committee that supports the Unit Leader.
What is a “charter”?
The Boy Scouts of America (BSA) issues a charter through a local council to a Chartered Organization (the church or other organization that owns your unit). The charter is a formal agreement allowing that organization to use the Scouting program to serve youth in its community. BSA requires that the charter be renewed annually to continue using the program. We call that annual renewal “recharter”.
Who is the executive officer of my unit?
The name of your Executive Officer should be listed on the upper-left hand corner of the first page of your charter renewal. This individual acts as a liaison between the charter organization and the Scout unit. The Boy Scouts of America suggests that each unit regularly meet with their Executive Officer to discuss the program, upcoming events, and opportunities to strengthen their partnership.
What is “recharter”?
What else happens during recharter? Basically, you’re telling BSA:
- Who is “in” for next year? (existing youth and adults, plus new members)
- Who is “out” for next year? (existing members who are dropping out of the program)
In addition to renewing the unit charter, recharter time is when all youth and adult members (leaders) renew their membership in BSA. Member renewals are most of the work. If your unit collects all or part of its member dues or fees on an annual basis, that collection often takes place at recharter, too. Your unit should also complete the application for the Journey To Excellence Award.
To accomplish this, the annual charter renewal process is essentially four steps:
- Gather necessary information on youth and adult members
- Gather membership applications (youth and adults) and verification of Youth Protection Training (adults only)
- Enter the information through the BSA’s Internet Charter Renewal website
- Print your charter renewal documents from Internet Charter Renewal, review those documents with your Unit Commissioner, and then submit the “Unit Charter Renewal Report Package” to our council office
For a step-by-step walkthrough of how to complete the recharter process, CLICK HERE.
When do I need to have my charter renewal finished?
By Nov. 30; this allows our council service center enough time to process all charter renewals by year’s end. A quick and efficient completion depends on your unit’s ability to gather information and fees quickly, gather signatures, and turn everything in.
What if I don’t get the charter renewal in by Nov. 30?
Units with late charters suffer a number of problems. First, their unit is no longer covered by BSA insurance. This means that your leaders could be liable in the event of an accident. Second, youth advancements cannot be recorded through the national office of the Boy Scouts of America. Third, magazine subscriptions of Boy’s Life and Scouting will lapse (and it takes a full two months for these periodicals to resume their circulation to your home).