Here are some things the committee chair needs to be on top of as we get busier:
- Many troops (packs too) plan their budget on a program-year basis (September to August). If yours is one, be sure to meet with your treasurer and Scoutmaster to look over the unit budget for the coming year. (Involve the troop scribe and possibly the senior patrol leader in the process – it is their troop, after all.) It’s a good time to look at where you did well and where you lost money. Ideally, your program budget should be a zero-sum (all the money that comes in gets spent on program) but you may also be saving for future expenses such as a new trailer, tents or a big high-adventure trip. Factor those in as well and make sure you are on track. If you typically close your books at another time of year, keep this in mind for when you do.
- On the subject of money, most councils sponsor an annual product sale, usually popcorn, in the fall. Make sure you are signed up with your council to sell popcorn. One of your committee members or parents should be the popcorn “kernel” who is responsible for managing the product sale for your troop. Make sure your kernel attends the information sessions that your council may offer, and makes the troop aware of the product lineup and costs as well as ordering, pickup and payment dates. If you do public show & sell sales, make reservations with area businesses to sell at their locations. Don’t worry about staffing – the boys should fill that in once the dates are known. Confirm your locations a week or so ahead of time, and don’t forget to send a thank-you note to the businesses after the sale’s over.
- If you don’t have a standing arrangement for meeting space, schedule your troop committee meeting locations and dates and publish the schedule for your committee and families. Likewise, if you must make arrangements for troop meeting locations, be sure that’s done.
- Get together with your Scoutmaster to go over the annual program plan that the boys came up with. Determine how the committee needs to support the activities they agreed upon. Typical things the committee needs to do include making camp facility reservations and making payments, filing tour plans, issuing permission slips and directions to camps, collecting fees, arranging transportation and equipment.
- Your Webelos resource person should have a good point of contact with the Cub Scout packs in your area. Many packs change personnel from year to year, so get in touch with those you know about to confirm names and contact information, particularly for the Cubmaster and Webelos den leaders.You’ll want to promote your troop’s activities for Webelos den recruiting and to smooth the transition to Boy Scouts.
- Be prepared to offer support to the packs as they start activities in the fall. They would appreciate help conducting recruiting nights or helping with a fall outdoor event. The Scoutmaster should also help with placing den chiefs.