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Dear Scouting Friends,

Thank you for the leadership you provide to deliver the Scouting program in the Black Swamp Area Council.

Over the past 3 months our council leadership was able to visit with more than 200 volunteers at the 14 different fireside chats, which were scheduled in each of our 13 counties as well as 3 council wide evening sessions.  Scouting is strong in the Black Swamp Area Council because of your volunteer leadership.  As we outlined in the fireside chats, the council is in a position that a local service fee is needed to maintain current council services.  The council is not excited about implementing this fee, however increased cost and decreased revenue generation are driving this change.

There are several changes to the membership fees that will be occurring over the next few months.

Effective April 1, 2024, National BSA has eliminated the $25 one-time joining fee for new program participants in Cub Scouts, Scouts BSA, and Venturing.  Additionally, National BSA will implement the following national membership fees, which were approved by the National Executive Committee."

The following National BSA membership fee structure will take effect (updated) May 1.

  • $85 for Cub Scouts, Scouts BSA, Venturing and Sea Scouts participants.
  • $50 for Exploring youth/program participants.
  • $25 for Merit Badge Counselors who are not already registered volunteers.
  • $100 for a unit charter/affiliation fee
  • $15 for Scout Life magazine

Starting on August 1, 2024, the Black Swamp Area Council will be charging an additional local council service fee at the time of registration and renewal:

  • $40 council service fee for all Cub Scout, Scouts BSA and Venturing youth/program participants.
  • $30 council service fee for all Exploring youth/program participants. 
  • No additional fee for volunteer leaders.
  • As a value added for our members the following incentives will be added:
    • First time new joining Scouts (at any level, Lion Cub through Scouts BSA) will receive their first handbook at no cost.  (The new Scout receives a voucher for the handbook redeemable at the Findlay and Lima Scout Shops).  This is an up to $25.00 value.
    • Returning Scouts will receive a voucher for a onetime 10% discount at the Findlay and Lima Scout Shops (good for up to 3 months after membership renewal).
    • All units will be able to make a cost-free reservation to tent camp at Camp Berry and Lakota (non-summer camp). 
    • The Family Friends of Scouting campaign will become a direct solicitation campaign, with unit presentations only occurring when the unit asks for one. 

Download Membership Fee Infographic

The National Council Registration help cover the cost of essential services, including program resources, liability insurance, criminal background checks, youth protection training, Scoutbook/Internet Advancement, National Camp Accreditation Program implementation, and intellectual property for National, Council, and Unit Programs.

Thank you for your understanding regarding these important changes.  If you have any questions, please contact our Council Service Center at 419-422-4356 to speak with your District Executive.

Registration assistance will continue to be available to make Scouting accessible to all youth.  Please work with your district executive to facilitate this benefit.  There are many programs on the horizon and we look forward to sharing an exciting Spring and Summer season with you.

Yours in Scouting,

Matt Black                                Tom Masterson                       Marc Kogan
Council President                    Council Commissioner            Scout Executive


Black Swamp Area Council
2100 Broad Avenue, Findlay Ohio
(419) 422-4356