Idaho scout leaders see donor backlash - Coeur d'Alene Press: Local News

Idaho scout leaders see donor backlash

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Posted: Friday, February 17, 2012 12:00 am | Updated: 10:31 am, Fri Nov 16, 2012.

Scout program leaders in North Idaho are pleading constituents not to cut off support for the Boy Scouts out of opposition to the Camp Easton land swap.

Officials with the Old Mission District, which oversees scouting programs in Kootenai, Shoshone and Benewah counties, say they have been contacted by a high number of volunteers and financial donors threatening to sever ties with the district if the proposed exchange goes through.

"Some of our biggest contributors are saying, 'We're not going to be associated with scouting anymore,'" said district Chairman Ladd Livingston.

Some have made significant donations to fund Camp Easton infrastructure, Livingston explained, with the understanding that the improvements would be used at that location permanently.

"They've discovered that might not be the case, and they're not happy," he said.

District Vice Chair Carl Eaton added that some contributors who have given $10,000 or more have informed the district leadership that now instead of giving to the district, they will donate to interests committed to halting the land swap.

Some volunteers have said they won't continue to participate in district scouting activities, said Mike Holehan, also district vice-chair.

"Some have approached us at events, some call us at home," Holehan said.

What they don't understand, Eaton said, is the Old Mission District does not own Camp Easton nor controls the details of the land exchange.

He stressed that the Spokane-based Inland Northwest Council owns the property and is at the helm of negotiations on the land swap.

"It's all over our heads," Eaton said.

The district is simply tasked with organizing activities for the Boy Scouts, Cub Scouts and Venture Scouts in the area, Eaton said. That includes camping trips and events like the recent merit badge college, Klondike Derby and Mountain Man Rendezvous.

That's also what the district's funding goes toward, Eaton said. So cutting funding and volunteer hours for the district only impacts the scouts' activities.

"It's just eliminating programs," Eaton said. "We need people to understand that there's a disconnect between what's happening with Camp Easton and what goes on with the Old Mission District."

The cost per scout is about $175 in the district, he said.

There are 130 Boy Scout troops in the area, though the district office staff didn't know offhand how many youth participate in all the programs.

Eaton's biggest concern, he said, is that if the district can't show it has community support, the INC can dissolve the district and merge it with the one in Spokane.

"Then Spokane dictates what's going to be done here, instead of local people," Eaton said. "If people want to give to the other cause (opposing the land swap), then fine, but don't take away from the boys."

He noted that even individual scout units participating in the annual Friends of Scouting fundraiser have been struggling to get their usual donations.

"We just want to get the message across that we aren't making the decision," Eaton said. "We just want to give the boys a good program."

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20 comments:

  • Condescending contributor posted at 10:10 pm on Wed, Feb 22, 2012.

    Condescending contributor Posts: 97

    concernedcitizen posted at 7:05 am on Fri, Feb 17, 2012.
    You dang right there will be backlash. I am no longer a pack leader, my sons are out of scouting and my contributions will now go to an organization that STANDS by its own moral code.

    "If you sleep with dogs, you will wake up with fleas."

    I do NOT want my children mentored by people with sketchy morals and ethics.
    That doesn't explain your no longer being a Scout leader. What organization are you refering to , that stands by it's moral code better than the BSA? Will your sons now be "Camp Easton forever boys"? How do your sons feel about no longer being Scouts? Was that their choice? Things sure have changed, haven't they? Don't be bitter because you didn't get your way. think of your sons. :-)

     
  • concernedcitizen posted at 4:46 pm on Sun, Feb 19, 2012.

    concernedcitizen Posts: 2530

    So scotter,

    Please enlighten us. How much ARE you making on the deal?

     
  • spudman1 posted at 4:18 pm on Sun, Feb 19, 2012.

    spudman1 Posts: 445

    Scoot, you gotta get off the pipe before you comment. The ranting is being done by you. I understand it may be hard to keep a good train of thought on the hemp, but read it all back a few times before you post it. Ask yourself if it makes sense or ask someone.
    The questions being raised are legtimate. Scout leadership has lied about everything from when they signed agreements with Discovery to how much the repairs are on Camp Easton.
    It will all come out soon.

     
  • Scooter3 posted at 3:47 pm on Sun, Feb 19, 2012.

    Scooter3 Posts: 13

    conceredcitizen:

    "Your rant . . . are the same tactics used by many to silence the majority. And YES, I said majority. I have talked to HUNDREDS of scouts and scout leaders."

    Am I silencing the majority? Am I saying you have no right to oppose the deal or share your opinion? No. I am calling you and others out your hypocrisy of claiming to be the defenders of scouting values while verbally conducting yourselves in a much different fashion. Feel free to share why you oppose the deal. Don't claim to stand for being courteous, kind, etc. while you label the executive board and council staff with vicious epithets.

    By the way, last time I checked there were THOUSANDS, not HUNDREDS of members in the council. I may be wrong, but I think it's safe to say you haven't spoken with all of them and to act as if the opinions of a few hundred automatically reflect the views of several thousand is a logical fallacy and simply not true.

    Frankly, I think some opponents to this deal just can't fathom how any honest scout could favor it, hence the name-calling, and assertions of a supposedly massive majority that is in opposition.

     
  • spudman1 posted at 9:58 am on Sun, Feb 19, 2012.

    spudman1 Posts: 445

    Like to hear a comment from anybody regarding how the Scout Council is going to trade Camp Easton to Discovery/Gozzer for a piece of land they don't own? The Scout leadership held meetings and gave time that imposed restrictions on just how long those opposed could speak. They controlled that forum tightly.
    In those meetings most opposed the sale. There was a small group including a banker that promoted this deal. They did not care if there was support or not. The actions were predictible, there is too much big money involved from Spokane to at least one Cda broker/realtor and crony's involved with Gozzer ranch. They would benefit greatly or at the least think they will. Follow the money, it is not about the Boy's or their camp experiance. It's about the money!

     
  • concernedcitizen posted at 8:51 am on Sun, Feb 19, 2012.

    concernedcitizen Posts: 2530

    Scooter3,

    Your rant to protest our views and opinions are the same tactics used by many to silence the majority. And YES, I said majority. I have talked to HUNDREDS of scouts and scout leaders.

    The council is corrupt and self serving for some (cough,money,cough) reason. I cannot wait until the lawsuit exposes the corruption and the court pursues legal action against all involved.

     
  • Scooter3 posted at 2:40 am on Sun, Feb 19, 2012.

    Scooter3 Posts: 13

    Always Curious:

    "My conversations with other scouters doesn't support Mr. McCandles percentage figures of 60%+ in favor, it is much, much smaller and many weren't even given the opportunity to express an opinion regardless of the claims otherwise of an all encompassing survey sent out by the district. What a travesty of scouting values this process has been. The current executive leadership doesn't appear to personify many of these values."

    First, just because the folks you talk to are strongly opposed to the deal does not mean that the majority are against it. The people you talk to are only a part of the thousands of members who comprise the council. To say that they disprove the survey's results is overstating things. They may prove that a certain segment of members are strongly against the proposal, but that hardly constitutes proof of the opinions of all the members.

    Second, how can you say people against the proposal have not been given an opportunity to voice their opinion? There have been several town hall meetings, three of which have taken place in Sandpoint, Spokane Valley, and Couer d'Alene, where audience members were given ample opportunity to voice their opinions and opposition. There was a survey sent out via e-mail and posted on the council website that anyone could participate in which also gave several opportunities to share general comments about the proposal, and the executive board has established a way to reach them with letters and other notes on the proposal. These are at least three diverse examples of the ways in which the council has allowed for feedback by members and volunteers as they consider this proposal. To say people weren't even given an opportunity to voice their opinion is incontrovertibly false.

    "The current executive leadership doesn't appear to personify many of these values."

    You're referring to values like a scout being Trustworthy, Courteous, Kind, Obedient, etc. Let's examine the record on these. The council has been very upfront about the proposal, its details, and where they are in the process. They have allowed (as we have already established) plenty of opportunities for positive and negative feedback. They have made no mystery of their motives, repeatedly making the case as to why the deal is being considered and/or favored. They have treated opponents with respect and courtesy in every public statement and proposal related-event they have held. Meanwhile, many opposed to the proposal have vigorously attacked not just the perspectives of the executives on the board, but their personal character. In just this comment section alone, the executive board and scout executive were referenced as "people with sketchy morals and ethics" (concerned citizen), a "group of morons" (JoeIdaho), "two-faced" (Truckride), greedy (CHSdad & Hayden Joe), "self-centered egotists" (Hayden Joe), and "evil people" (Hayden Joe). This is to say nothing of what has been said in other comment threads on this site, in comments on the survey, Facebook posts etc. I could also mention the people who have argued for re-establishing the Idaho Panhandle Council due to the alleged corruption and irresponsibility of the current council, but I think you get the point.

    We need to rethink exactly who is personifying what values.

     
  • Scooter3 posted at 2:39 am on Sun, Feb 19, 2012.

    Scooter3 Posts: 13

    Always Curious:

    "My conversations with other scouters doesn't support Mr. McCandles percentage figures of 60%+ in favor, it is much, much smaller and many weren't even given the opportunity to express an opinion regardless of the claims otherwise of an all encompassing survey sent out by the district. What a travesty of scouting values this process has been. The current executive leadership doesn't appear to personify many of these values."

    First, just because the folks you talk to are strongly opposed to the deal does not mean that the majority are against it. The people you talk to are only a part of the thousands of members who comprise the council. To say that they disprove the survey's results is overstating things. They may prove that a certain segment of members are strongly against the proposal, but that hardly constitutes proof of the opinions of all the members.

    Second, how can you say people against the proposal have not been given an opportunity to voice their opinion? There have been several town hall meetings, three of which have taken place in Sandpoint, Spokane Valley, and Couer d'Alene, where audience members were given ample opportunity to voice their opinions and opposition. There was a survey sent out via e-mail and posted on the council website that anyone could participate in which also gave several opportunities to share general comments about the proposal, and the executive board has established a way to reach them with letters and other notes on the proposal. These are at least three diverse examples of the ways in which the council has allowed for feedback by members and volunteers as they consider this proposal. To say people weren't even given an opportunity to voice their opinion is incontrovertibly false.

    "The current executive leadership doesn't appear to personify many of these values."

    You're referring to values like a scout being Trustworthy, Courteous, Kind, Obedient, etc. Let's examine the record on these. The council has been very upfront about the proposal, its details, and where they are in the process. They have allowed (as we have already established) plenty of opportunities for positive and negative feedback. They have made no mystery of their motives, repeatedly making the case as to why the deal is being considered and/or favored. They have treated opponents with respect and courtesy in every public statement and proposal related-event they have held. Meanwhile, many opposed to the proposal have vigorously attacked not just the perspectives of the executives on the board, but their personal character. In just this comment section alone, the executive board and scout executive were referenced as "people with sketchy morals and ethics" (concerned citizen), a "group of morons" (JoeIdaho), "two-faced" (Truckride), greedy (CHSdad & Hayden Joe), "self-centered egotists" (Hayden Joe), and "evil people" (Hayden Joe). This is to say nothing of what has been said in other comment threads on this site, in comments on the survey, Facebook posts etc. I could also mention the people who have argued for re-establishing the Idaho Panhandle Council due to the alleged corruption and irresponsibility of the current council, but I think you get the point.

    Clearly, we need to rethink exactly who is personifying what values.

     
  • Scooter3 posted at 2:38 am on Sun, Feb 19, 2012.

    Scooter3 Posts: 13

    Always Curious:

    "My conversations with other scouters doesn't support Mr. McCandles percentage figures of 60%+ in favor, it is much, much smaller and many weren't even given the opportunity to express an opinion regardless of the claims otherwise of an all encompassing survey sent out by the district. What a travesty of scouting values this process has been. The current executive leadership doesn't appear to personify many of these values."

    First, just because the folks you talk to are strongly opposed to the deal does not mean that the majority are against it. The people you talk to are only a part of the thousands of members who comprise the council. To say that they disprove the survey's results is overstating things. They may prove that a certain segment of members are strongly against the proposal, but that hardly constitutes proof of the opinions of all the members.

    Second, how can you say people against the proposal have not been given an opportunity to voice their opinion? There have been several town hall meetings, three of which have taken place in Sandpoint, Spokane Valley, and Couer d'Alene, where audience members were given ample opportunity to voice their opinions and opposition. There was a survey sent out via e-mail and posted on the council website that anyone could participate in which also gave several opportunities to share general comments about the proposal, and the executive board has established a way to reach them with letters and other notes on the proposal. These are at least three diverse examples of the ways in which the council has allowed for feedback by members and volunteers as they consider this proposal. To say people weren't even given an opportunity to voice their opinion is incontrovertibly false.

    "The current executive leadership doesn't appear to personify many of these values."

    You're referring to values like a scout being Trustworthy, Courteous, Kind, Obedient, etc. Let's examine the record on these. The council has been very upfront about the proposal, its details, and where they are in the process. They have allowed (as we have already established) plenty of opportunities for positive and negative feedback. They have made no mystery of their motives, repeatedly making the case as to why the deal is being considered and/or favored. They have treated opponents with respect and courtesy in every public statement and proposal related-event they have held. Meanwhile, many opposed to the proposal have vigorously attacked not just the perspectives of the executives on the board, but their personal character. In just this comment section alone, the executive board and scout executive were referenced as "people with sketchy morals and ethics" (concerned citizen), a "group of morons" (JoeIdaho), "two-faced" (Truckride), greedy (CHSdad & Hayden Joe), "self-centered egotists" (Hayden Joe), and "evil people" (Hayden Joe). This is to say nothing of what has been said in other comment threads on this site, in comments on the survey, Facebook posts etc. I could also mention the people who have argued for re-establishing the Idaho Panhandle Council due to the alleged corruption and irresponsibility of the current council, but I think you get the point.

    Clearly, we need to rethink exactly who is personifying what values.

     
  • Scooter3 posted at 2:36 am on Sun, Feb 19, 2012.

    Scooter3 Posts: 13

    HaydenJoe:

    "Evil people should not be rewarded with contributions which only stand to endorse their uni-lateral decisions."

    Frankly I'm appalled at how you can call the council staff and executive board evil. That kind of language has no place in debates or discussions of any kind, much less ones involving boy scouts. However much you may disagree with the council's decisions, they are NOT evil. Also, how have the council's decisions been unilateral? A simple reading of the survey results would show that opinion on this issue is at the very least split if not in favor of the deal. To accuse the council of unilateral decision-making is to assert that no one besides the executive board and scout executive favor the deal, an assertion that is simply not true.

    Always Curious:

    "My conversations with other scouters doesn't support Mr. McCandles percentage figures of 60%+ in favor, it is much, much smaller and many weren't even given the opportunity to express an opinion regardless of the claims otherwise of an all encompassing survey sent out by the district. What a travesty of scouting values this process has been. The current executive leadership doesn't appear to personify many of these values."

    First, just because the folks you talk to are strongly opposed to the deal does not mean that the majority are against it. The people you talk to are only a part of the thousands of members who comprise the council. To say that they disprove the survey's results is overstating things. They may prove that a certain segment of members are strongly against the proposal, but that hardly constitutes proof of the opinions of all the members.

    Second, how can you say people against the proposal have not been given an opportunity to voice their opinion? There have been several town hall meetings, three of which have taken place in Sandpoint, Spokane Valley, and Couer d'Alene, where audience members were given ample opportunity to voice their opinions and opposition. There was a survey sent out via e-mail and posted on the council website that anyone could participate in which also gave several opportunities to share general comments about the proposal, and the executive board has established a way to reach them with letters and other notes on the proposal. These are at least three diverse examples of the ways in which the council has allowed for feedback by members and volunteers as they consider this proposal. To say people weren't even given an opportunity to voice their opinion is incontrovertibly false.

    "The current executive leadership doesn't appear to personify many of these values."

    You're referring to values like a scout being Trustworthy, Courteous, Kind, Obedient, etc. Let's examine the record on these. The council has been very upfront about the proposal, its details, and where they are in the process. They have allowed (as we have already established) plenty of opportunities for positive and negative feedback. They have made no mystery of their motives, repeatedly making the case as to why the deal is being considered and/or favored. They have treated opponents with respect and courtesy in every public statement and proposal related-event they have held. Meanwhile, many opposed to the proposal have vigorously attacked not just the perspectives of the executives on the board, but their personal character. In just this comment section alone, the executive board and scout executive were referenced as "people with sketchy morals and ethics" (concerned citizen), a "group of morons" (JoeIdaho), "two-faced" (Truckride), greedy (CHSdad & Hayden Joe), "self-centered egotists" (Hayden Joe), and "evil people" (Hayden Joe). This is to say nothing of what has been said in other comment threads on this site, in comments on the survey, Facebook posts etc. I could also mention the people who have argued for re-establishing the Idaho Panhandle Council due to the alleged corruption and irresponsibility of the current council, but I think you get the point.

    Clearly, we need to rethink exactly who is personifying what values.

     
  • Truckride posted at 3:16 pm on Fri, Feb 17, 2012.

    Truckride Posts: 21

    Camp Easton Forever Inc. has filed a lawsuit to stop the sale of this Camp; wouldn't common sense tell the Council to hold off on moving forward till the Court decides if this sale can even legally take place? The rush to go forward, the push to rid themselves of this "premier Camp" is questionable and every Council member who voted in favor of this, including the two-faced Tim McCandless, needs to start receiving letters and phone calls of protest. Scouts across this area are angry at this decision, even those in the state of Washington - let your real opinions be heard not some phoney survey that cannot be validated!
    Any wanting to donate to help stop this abusive use of power by out of state businessmen can donate to Camp Easton Forever, P.O. Box 3255, Coeur d'Alene, ID 83816. They are a non-profit organization donating hundreds of hours to keep the Boy Scout Council in this area ethical.

     
  • Always Curious posted at 11:32 am on Fri, Feb 17, 2012.

    Always Curious Posts: 460

    My father was a scout, my brothers and I were scouts, my sons were scouts.

    I have given many hours, days, weeks of my time to scouting over quite a few years and a lot of that at Camp Easton.

    Camp Easton was always full for summer camp sesssions - troops would come from all over the Pacific Northwest. It is the best camp for scouts in the entire region; a combination of a great waterfront, historic and traditional features, acres of woods that are great for exploring and games and vast potential for the development and enjoyment of future scouts.

    My conversations with other scouters doesn't support Mr. McCandles percentage figures of 60%+ in favor, it is much, much smaller and many weren't even given the opportunity to express an opinion regardless of the claims otherwise of an all encompassing survey sent out by the district.

    What a travesty of scouting values this process has been.

    The current executive leadership doesn't appear to personify many of these values.

    In an exercise of personal choice with the words "On my honor I will do best .... " streongly influencing my decision, I also will NOT be supporting this group of scouting executives with funding or time.

     
  • JoeIdaho posted at 10:27 am on Fri, Feb 17, 2012.

    JoeIdaho Posts: 2841

    I will NOT donate our Family's money to the Boy Scouts any more. Last year we dcontributed well over $5,000 to the Scouts, this year the same money is going to the people that will legally fight AGAINST what this group of morons is trying to do by destroying an EXCELLENT camp.

    ANYTHING for "Discovery Land Company", huh?
    What GREAT neighbors. They are THE WORST.

     
  • mister d posted at 10:15 am on Fri, Feb 17, 2012.

    mister d Posts: 1531

    It is sad that the youth will suffer, but it isn't the donors causing this. Seems like the INC are responsible for this backlash. If they are making the right decision about this camp everything will work out OK. If not, well people have a right to donate their money to who they feel will respect the donation.

     
  • CHSdad posted at 10:12 am on Fri, Feb 17, 2012.

    CHSdad Posts: 369

    I don't believe that any money donated specifically for Easton did not make it there, it's just that the local district is not in control of the camp and so have no say in its future.

    I have 2 sons in scouting and they love the current camp. My older son wrote to many of the executive and pleaded with them not to sell up. He had a few responses, all saying that they would sell for the future benefit of scouting. One even suggested that my son had written because his adult leaders had put him up to it.

    Sadly, we look like losing this great camp because Spokane based businessmen can't see beyond what they can do with the money. In the meantime, our local scouts are going to pay the price for this greed.

     
  • babydriver posted at 9:17 am on Fri, Feb 17, 2012.

    babydriver Posts: 1393

    Mind boggeling, Folks give money to a district that does not control the property the money was donated for. Hmm, what did they do with the money?

    Did the contributors know from the beginning their contributions were no going where they wanted them to go?

    I thought Scouting was all about honesty and uprightness, well awhile back anyway.

     
  • will-- posted at 8:32 am on Fri, Feb 17, 2012.

    will-- Posts: 906

    It appears that the scout leadership will stop at nothing to earn the "Cooked Goose" merit badge.

     
  • Hayden Joe posted at 7:25 am on Fri, Feb 17, 2012.

    Hayden Joe Posts: 170

    Scouting is about teaching lessons.

    The lesson here is that a handful of greedy, self-centered egotists have wrested control of the regional scouting program.

    Evil people should not be rewarded with contributions which only stand to endorse their uni-lateral decisions.

    Starve them out and replace them.

    Return Scouting to its roots!

     
  • concernedcitizen posted at 7:05 am on Fri, Feb 17, 2012.

    concernedcitizen Posts: 2530

    You dang right there will be backlash. I am no longer a pack leader, my sons are out of scouting and my contributions will now go to an organization that STANDS by its own moral code.

    "If you sleep with dogs, you will wake up with fleas."

    I do NOT want my children mentored by people with sketchy morals and ethics.

     
  • Mark on the Park posted at 7:02 am on Fri, Feb 17, 2012.

    Mark on the Park Posts: 471

    From the article: "Some have made significant donations to fund Camp Easton infrastructure, Livingston explained, with the understanding that the improvements would be used at that location permanently"

    "What they don't understand, Eaton said, is the Old Mission District does not own Camp Easton nor controls the details of the land exchange."

    Am I to understand that there have been donations to the Old Mission District for the purpose of maintaining/improving Camp Easton and that those funds in fact did not get allocated to that cause?

     
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