Boy Scout Bosses Sell Wildlands to Developers

'Conservation-minded' group slammed for cashing in on green spaces
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 31, 2009 1:13 PM CST
An investigation has discovered that Boy Scouts of America has been making tens of million dollars by selling wildlands to property developers.   (Shutter Stock)

(Newser) – The Boy Scouts of America has made tens of millions of dollars over the past two decades by selling campgrounds and valuable wildlands across the country to developers, a Seattle Post-Intelligencer investigation reports. The organization—which boasts a "conservation-minded" Outdoor Code—has often exclusively sought deals with developers, sometimes even when the land was bequeathed to them with the intention that it be used for outdoor recreation.

Conservation groups charge that Scout councils ignore their concerns—as well as their land bids—and seem interested only in making money fast. Public outrage has killed some development deals but plenty more are in the works. Scout officials argue that the sales are necessary because of high maintenance costs and the decline in membership and funding that followed the organization's ban on gays and atheists.