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Lawsuit fights to stop sale of Central Maine Boy Scout Camp

The Belgrade property was donated to the scouts by a Waterville doctor in the 1940s.
Lawsuit fights possible sale.
Lawsuit fights possible sale.(WABI)
Published: Jul. 1, 2021 at 3:58 PM EDT
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BELGRADE, Maine (WABI) - There’s a fight underway to keep a Central Maine Boy Scout camp - a Central Maine Boy Scout Camp.

The Maine Attorney General has filed a lawsuit against the Pine Tree Council of Boy Scouts of America to keep them from selling Camp Bomazeen to help get out of debt.

The Belgrade property was donated to the scouts by a Waterville doctor in the 1940s.

TV5 spoke with members of the Bomazeen Old Timers Club Thursday.

They say they are in full support of the suit.

“The land was given in trust to Pine Tree Council for them to manage it and utilize it for scouts in the Kennebec Valley area, we felt by selling the property that was a breach of the trust,” said Bruce Rueger of the Bomazeen Old Timers Club.

“It’s for Central Maine youth,” said fellow club member Scott Adams. “To sit there and sell it and take the money to bail out Pine Tree Council leaving all the youth of the area high and dry it’s just not right. The way they land was given to the scouts to use it just goes against the trust.”

They say that the case is set to go to mediation later this summer.

However, they hope that they can come to an agreement and avoid going to court.

The Pine Tree Council provided TV5 with a statement.

The Pine Tree Council disagrees with the claims that have been made by the Attorney General, Mr. Bruce Rueger, and Mr. Scott Adams about the Pine Tree Council’s ability to sell Camp Bomazeen and to use the proceeds from any future sale. As described in the counterclaims that the Pine Tree Council filed in the Superior Court against the Attorney General and the two intervenors, the Pine Tree Council believes strongly that it is free to sell Camp Bomazeen and is free to use the proceeds from any sale to help secure the future of scouting in Maine, and has asked the Court to declare that is the case.

The Pine Tree Council owns several camps, including Camp Bomazeen. Maintaining all of them has become a burden to the Pine Tree Council, particularly since the camps, generally, and Camp Bomazeen, specifically, are significantly underutilized. Nothing would please the Pine Tree Council more than to have all of its camps, including Camp Bomazeen, being used to the fullest extent possible by Boy Scouts. However, that is simply not the reality. Because of the camps’ under-utilization, there simply is not enough revenue provided by their use to pay for their maintenance. As a result, the Pine Tree Council has to be a good steward of its resources so that it can continue to serve the needs of current Boy Scouts and those who will come in the future. For that reason, although the Pine Tree Council has not identified a buyer for Camp Bomazeen, the Pine Tree Council is open to selling it, particularly to a party who would allow Boy Scouts to continue to use it into the future.

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