Renting Pinewood track to other units... BSA liability???

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Renting Pinewood track to other units... BSA liability???

Postby riverwalk » Wed Dec 05, 2007 2:36 pm

Here's a question for the wider audience. My Council sees no issue, but I ask anyway.

One of our units wants to rent out their Pinewood track to other units, and wondered if there was any liability involved from a BSA perspective. I didn't think so either.

So the question is, has any unit rented "stuff" or services out to other units in need? :?: :idea:
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Postby Mrw » Wed Dec 05, 2007 3:18 pm

One of our feeder packs owns a track that has been used by other units. They both provide the track and have someone from the pack in attendance to set it up make sure it is used properly and then packed properly for storage.
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Equipment

Postby riverwalk » Wed Dec 05, 2007 6:25 pm

Thanks. Yeah, that's common here as well. I'm curious as to their concern since they want to rent out their items. I didn't find any issue myself, but was happy they thought to ask. :wink:
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Postby WVBeaver05 » Wed Dec 05, 2007 9:01 pm

Not sure about liability. But, I would have trouble justifying renting something within the Scouting community. Maybe it's just me, but it doesn't "feel" right.

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Postby scouter01 » Wed Dec 05, 2007 11:01 pm

WVBeaver05 wrote:Not sure about liability. But, I would have trouble justifying renting something within the Scouting community. Maybe it's just me, but it doesn't "feel" right.

YiS


Agreed. as long as it is returend in the same condiotn, shouldn't it be free? ( if the borowring troop picks it up)
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Postby FrankJ » Wed Dec 05, 2007 11:28 pm

Renting for a profit to another scout unit goes a little against my grain, but I see no legal or liability type issues.

A small contribution to cover wear & tear would not out of line.
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Postby Chief J » Thu Dec 06, 2007 8:57 am

I agree with above posts. Why rent for profit within the scout community. If the using unit returns in the same condition, why do you need to charge rent.

Now let me put my tax accountant hat on and say, if the unit gets in the habit of renting their equipment to others, then they could possibly be deemed to be engaging in a trade or business, and be subject to or have to address, federal income tax, state income tax, state franchise tax (if imposed) and the state sales tax rules and regulations. Now the chance of the government auditors actually imposing these rules and regulations is not likely, there is a possibility.

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Postby PaulSWolf » Thu Dec 06, 2007 9:11 am

I know a neighboring Pack that bought an all aluminum Pinewood Derby track, timing mechanism and software, and spent a considerable amount to do so. I see nothing wrong with that Pack, then "renting out" the equipment, in order to offset their costs.
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Postby Nuts4Scouts » Thu Dec 06, 2007 9:23 am

I have heard of a unit that rents their equipment and also sends along folks to set it up, run the event and then take it down.

From what I understand they usually cater to the smaller Packs who do not have the expertise and equipment and to larger Packs who find it easier to pay to have someone else do all of the work.

Not to my taste, but they seem to get a lot of repeat business.
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Postby joat » Thu Dec 06, 2007 12:19 pm

Chief J wrote: Why rent for profit within the scout community. If the using unit returns in the same condition, why do you need to charge rent.
The converse to this would be why should a pack expect that someone else build, maintain, and make available a track for everyone else to use? Asking a fee to recover expenses is a not making a profit.
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Postby cballman » Thu Dec 06, 2007 5:47 pm

what I have also seen was if the pack was small enough after the owner pack has their derby, then the other pack or packs comes to the place where the derby was run. then there is someone who stays late and helps out the other pack. then the track does not have to be transported to many times. less wear and tear.
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Postby hops_scout » Thu Dec 13, 2007 10:12 am

We had two packs in town when I was in Cub Scouts. The track was "co-owned" between the two of them. Really what had happened was that there was one pack until I became a Bear maybe. Then we split because of size. So they just shared the track until I believe they might have replaced it within the last couple of years. Anyway, one pack would go in the morning and then one would go in the afternoon in the same location.
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Units

Postby riverwalk » Sat Dec 15, 2007 2:58 pm

Yeah, I see a lot of sharing too. But I was trying to help this Unit with the renting question. Lots of Troops/Packs loan or share, but the renting aspect begged some responses from the Scouting community.

And all input is appreciated, and may help others that read only.
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Opening my big mouth again...

Postby MisterChris » Wed Jan 16, 2008 6:17 pm

Hmmm... I agree with an earlier poster that we as scouter should not expect troops or packs to purchase and maintain equipment for other packs to tear up, without the clear expectation of a sharing of the costs.

With that in mind, you don't have to couch the recompense as a fee or rent, but as an expected donation to cover the cost of wear, tear, storage, and upkeep.

If there's risk of damage or loss, seems to me the Pack 'borrowing' the track should request a representative from the 'loaning' Pack to help set up, tear down, and return. Also, a brief contract might be in order stating that if the track is damaged, the borrower should cover costs of repair. At time of 'teardown', track should be examined by an authoritative and responsible member of BOTH Packs, to ensure no damage has occurred, and that all parts were there and operating, before disassembly. The contract ought to be signed by both parties stating the track is ok and no parts are lost.

Shame that even in scouting you run the risk of people taking advantage of you, but it's certainly possible. Our Cubmaster went through considerable expense to get an aluminum track for our Pack, and I'm sure he wouldn't want it loaned out and damaged, to be repaired at his expense.

This plan actually DOES put an undue burden on the loaning Pack to always have a rep present, so some donation to cover their time, gas, and food, would not be out of order, and does not constitute 'running a business for profit.'
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Stuff

Postby riverwalk » Thu Jan 17, 2008 12:19 pm

Well said. It's the way I looked at their question to me. I just promised to check with a wider Scouting audience. Thanks.
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