Unit Recharter

What Is Unit Rechartering?

On June 15, 1916, the United States Congress granted a federal charter to the Boy Scouts of America. This charter can be found in the United States Code, Title 36 (Patriotic Societies and Observances), Chapter 2 (Boy Scouts of America).

As stated in the U.S. Code regarding the BSA: “The purpose of the corporation shall be to promote, through organization, and cooperation with other agencies, the ability of boys to do things for themselves and others, to train them in Scoutcraft, and to teach them patriotism, courage, self-reliance, and kindred virtues, using the methods which were in common use by Boy Scouts on June 15, 1916.”

The Boy Scouts of America renews its federal charter each year through a formal reporting to Congress. They (the BSA,) in turn, have granted charters to sponsoring (chartered) organizations. And like the BSA and the U.S. Congress, these chartered organizations must report to Scouting once each year to renew their local charters.

Chartered organizations are issued a charter, effective for one year, to operate a Cub Scout Pack. The charter year is not necessarily the same as the calendar or program year (the current Pack charter indicates the charter expiration date.) In the months prior to the charter expiration date, the District Executive, Unit Commissioner, Pack Committee, and Cubmaster all play an important role in the preparation and execution of the rechartering process.



This very important meeting is a time for review, a time for long-term planning, and a time for growth. It should occur about 45 days prior to the reregistration date.

Who Attends?
The following people should be invited to the charter renewal meeting: the unit commissioner, chartered organization head, chartered organization representative, pack committee chairman and members, and all other pack leaders.

Who Is Responsible? 
Either the chartered organization representative or pack committee chairman presides, unless the head of the chartered organization prefers to do so. The unit commissioner and pack committee members all have important parts in the meeting.

What Happens? 
The Charter Renewal materials explain the details of what should be included in the charter renewal meeting. The information below will give you a general idea of what to expect:

  • Review of membership inventory and inspection. Review of unit operation, including membership, program, advancement, outdoor activities, training status of leaders, pack budget plan, etc.
  • Identification of pack needs. Individual committee members may report on their specific areas of responsibility and make recommendations for improvement.
  • Did the pack qualify for the Quality Unit Award?
  • Complete application for charter renewal.
  • Make plans for the charter presentation ceremony.


Your council service center provides a computer printout for the annual rechartering of your pack. It includes information concerning your chartered organization, committee, leaders, and boy roster, including Tiger Cubs and their adult partners. The rechartering application requires only that you cross out the names of individuals not reregistering and incorrect information. Write in the correct facts immediately below to update the information.

Secure signatures (that of the organization head certifying all adults, the Committee Chair for Child Protection Training certification, and that of the Cubmaster certifying the boy roster). Forward the application to the local council service center with the necessary fees.

  • Additions to the pack roster are made by simply attaching registration applications for each new youth and adult member.

Online charter renewal
The starting point for online charter renewal. Includes tips, tutorial and charter renewal.


  • Allows the Cub Scouts and Webelos to continue advancing.
  • Allows the dens and pack to meet.
  • Allows outdoor activities.
  • Maintains historical continuity of Pack tenure.
  • Keeps Scouts and leaders insured.
  • Allows the pack to earn Quality Unit.



Ninety days before the charter renewal date, the professional Scouter renews the annual charter agreement with the executive officer of the chartered organization. During the visit, they:

  • Discuss the success and needs of the unit.
  • Review the role of the charted organization and the local council.
  • Consider key unit personnel to determine replacements, additions, and recognition.

Sixty days before the charter renewal date, the commissioner and unit committee conduct a membership inventory of youth and adults. Contacts or visits should be made to inactive youth and adults. Every effort should be made to recruit additional youth and adults so the unit re registers with no loss in membership.  (SPECIAL NOTE: See the roles and responsibilities of the committee’s membership and re-registration chairperson.)

Forty-five days before the charter renewal date, the commissioner and unit committee chairman conduct the charter renewal meeting, which includes identifying youth and adults to re-register, completing forms, and collecting fees. The executive officer of the chartered organization or the chartered organization representative approves all volunteers, the Committee Chair certifies the Youth Protection Training for all leaders, and the unit leader certifies the youth to be registered. Participants of this meeting should include the commissioner, chartered organization representative, executive officer of the chartered organization, unit leader, and all other unit volunteers.

Thirty days before the charter renewal date, the Pack Committee Chair and /or Cubmaster submits the complete charter renewal application with fees to the council service center. Thirty days after charter renewal, a formal charter presentation is conducted.


He dropped out. This sentence is repeated again and again as pack and troop leaders fill out their recharter forms. Boys who were active as Tigers, Cub Scouts, Webelos or Boy Scouts are dropped from our rolls as one of us draws a line through their names.

How do we feel about that?

First, remember that each of these boys WAS a Scout. For whatever length of time, each of them was exposed to the gifts that Scouting offers a boy. He was urged to do his best, to help other people, to give good will, and to do his duty to God and country. We should feel happy for him, whether he was a member for 12 years and earned his Eagle with palms or was active for only a few months.  For that period of time, Scouting was part of his life.

We did our best for him, didn’t we?

Yet, each of us has a duty to ask: why did he drop out? What could we have done to extend his Scouting – to keep him living the ideals of Scouting? Each time we draw that line through a boy’s name, we must ask why.

Did we fail him in some way? Was he expecting something we didn’t provide – or couldn’t provide? Did we fail his family somehow? Were they aware of how important Scouting can be to their son’s growth and development?

We are told by those who have studied this, that most boys stay in Scouting if the program is active and continuous. Boys tend to drop out when there is a break in the program or when leadership lapses.  As leaders, we must strive to ensure that our program is the best we can provide and is led by competent, trained adults.