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The Blue Quasar

Oga - Ontario Geocaching Association

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It is at this time that I wish to announce the official formation of the Ontario Geocaching Association.

 

The name OGA was chosen by a majority of fellow cachers in the forums of Geocaching.com.

 

As the appointed leader of OGA I am currently looking for people to assist with the developement of this in a variety of positions. Some people have already come forward and some have been approached and have either accepted or discussions are still on going.

 

Currently we have.....

 

The official symbol or logo for the group which will be uploaded for view soon

Keith Watson has been contacted to oversee the web site developement

Logger and Ail has agreed to be the cartographer

1Short has agreed to oversee the group newsletter

Also the follwing people will co-ordinate area municipalities or are considering doing so....

 

Hard Oiler - Essex, Kent, Lambton, Huron, Middlesex, Elgin

Purple Fever / Northern Eagle - Halton, Peel

Trimbles Trek - Wellington (Bruce, Grey and Dufferin I hope too)

The Daniel Boone Gang - Hamilton Wentworth, Brant

Donna G - Peterborough, Durham, Victoria, Northumberland (in discussion)

White Owl - Cochrane, Thunder Bay, Rainy River, Kenora (in discussion)

And I will take on Niagara, Haldimand Norfolk

 

Please contact me if you are interest in other areas or wish to help one of these individuals. I can send you a list of duties and explanations of them by email including a sample file.

 

Thank you, and please support our group by whatever means you are comfortable with.

 

:D The Blue Quasar

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Like I said before I am here to help where I can. BQ if you want to send me the info I will see what I can do here as Hastings and Prince Edward Counties.

 

garykyte@kos.net

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Nice to see some guys getting organized and getting going. Look forward to the site and the logo.

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The official symbol or logo for the group which will be uploaded for view soon

Will the design be similar to the old SOGA one, reflecting the new name?

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Hi Blue Quasar,

 

Please keep me informed with the progress of the association. I would also like to suggest some CITO events be scheduled for April 17th, this is the Second Annual Cache In Trash Out Day!. This should help the association get noticed by some of the parks we are presently talking to about Geocaching and put a positive light on our activity. Keep up the good work.

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Hi Blue Quasar,

 

Please keep me informed with the progress of the association. I would also like to suggest some CITO events be scheduled for April 17th, this is the Second Annual Cache In Trash Out Day!. This should help the association get noticed by some of the parks we are presently talking to about Geocaching and put a positive light on our activity. Keep up the good work.

How about a CITO event along the Bruce Trail particularly in the areas where it passes through the parks (Provincial, Conservation, private, etc) that we have been communicating with and those that potentially would follow the lead of any pending Government policy on caching?

We could even make a competition of sorts out of it somehow: Most trail kilometres cito'd by any cacher or team; most bags of trash; most unusual item; largest item, etc. etc. etc.

Could we possibly cover all 800 kilometres (end-to-end) of the main trail? <_<

 

Cheers, Olar

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I definitely feel a CITO event shoul dbe organized under the OGA banner. The Bruce Trail sound s like a good one but hopefully there will also be one closer to me.

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I applaud your forming of the Ontario society.

 

I am especially impressed by the the call for volunteers, rather than just setting it up w/o opinions being sought first.

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Just so everyone knows, I am not home on Monday nights to post to the forums.

 

I think that the CITO events would be a great kick-off for OGA. Cache-Tech, you can certainly expect several emails from me by the weekend on a variety of topics. Some will be reposted here, as they appliy to OGA. But I have some other clairification emails to send too.

 

Olar's idea is a good one for two reasons. First off the Conservation Areas/Parks should be the primary focus for CITO as it demonstrates goodwill towards government agengies. Secondly, it handles two groups at once. The BTA and the CA's or Ontario Parks.

 

My only concern with that plan is this. The Bruce Trail is very well maintained already and they definitely should be asked first as the local BTA's are the governing body for the trail sections. However, the parks that it passes through would be ideal. But again, at least around Niagara, the parks are very clean.

 

There are trails in Ontario that are not BTA and/or CA/OP that may benefit more from this effort.

 

I know that we could either start off small, or go big. I think from a geocaching-political perspective Olar's idea works best.

 

BUT above all else..... we definitely should have OGA-CITO events all over Ontario. That is in everyone's best interest.

 

:huh: The Blue Quasar

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I have requested the logo to be emailed to me. I have a printed version of it, but scanning it in and then posting it may cheapen it.

 

It is a reworking of the SOGA logo, with Southern taken out and the text realigned.

 

Otherwise, it's the same.

 

I plan on using this logo on the letterhead that will be sent to Conservation Authorities, Ontario Parks and any other agency as required.

 

Not to jump ahead, but I am sending a message to the representative of the Hamilton Conservation Authority to introduce ourselves and explain that we are in the process of forming.

 

:huh: The Blue Quasar

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This is a copy of a message I sent to ecofinder2003, which I believe works for the Hamilton Conservation Authority.

 

<insert clip>

 

Hello Ecofinder2003. I am trying to find a contact point for the Hamilton Conservation Authority. I would like to introduce our newly-formed group and as the Administrator of the Ontario Geocaching Association set up a time where we can meet to discuss geocaching policies with the HCA. I would like to request that such policies be placed on hold for a little while so we can meet as two groups and talk about our shared interests.

 

Am I correct in assuming that you are a member of the HCA? Can you assist me in contacting the HCA regarding this matter?

 

Thank you,

 

The Blue Quasar

Adminstrator of the Ontario Geocaching Association

 

<end clip>

 

:huh: The Blue Quasar

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Just a reminder of what J.A.R.S. had to say in the original "Nominations" thread:

J.A.R.S. Posted: Jan 4 2004, 04:38 PM 

 

Regarding the Bruce Trail, P38manCdn posted his experience with the Bruce Trail back in 2002. Here's the quote:

 

QUOTE 

 

Posted: Aug 31 2002, 06:23 AM

 

It may interest you to know that back in Feb/Mar2002 I contected the Bruce Trail Conservation Authority by phone and talked to a lady who didn't know about Geocaching. When I explained the sport and that I was doing the right thing... making a request --before-- I placed the cache, she got all upset stating they didn't want mobs of people walking on the trail. (duhhh) What's the trail for -- rabbits and chipmunks? She got right angry that someone would deliberately place something on "their" land to increase pedestrian traffic. She wanted to know who I was, and what right I had to do this to their "virgin" scenic trail. She demanded my name, address, and phone number... said she was going to have the "AUTHORITIES" come round and "talk" to me. yup -- Geseppi and Loui with their "knee-cap-pipe". I hung up on her

 

 

Whoever takes on the task of contacting authorities will need to be ready to handle this type of reaction. This type of response from someone with authority who is willing to remove caches could have a real impact on geocaching in this part of Ontario.

 

QUOTE 

To repeat myself, if we had a policy worked out with Parks Ontario/Ontario Parks, or with, as an example, Hamilton Conservation Authority, then we could use that as a template for future discussions. Basically have a document in hand of precidence.

 

 

I agree with Blue Quasar. Work with the authorities that are already aware of geocaching and are working on geocaching policies. We want to be part of the policy making process.

 

IMO we should hold off on dealing with the Bruce Trail authorities. Let sleeping dogs lie -- if we awake the BTA we may regret it. Having established policies with Parks Ontario and HCA first could be a better approach. 

 

I'm just not sure we should be contacting them right now. Perhaps once we have established some guidelines with others, such as Ontario Parks and HCA, with whom we are already in some sort of discussion, then it may be prudent. If the attitude above is still prevalent, we may meet some serious resistance.

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Here are some possible examples of Guidelines/regulations for OGA:

 

Geocache.com Guidelines

Georgia Geocachers Guidelines

Minnesota Guidelines

 

These are a couple of examples of some rules/guidelines. i think we may want to formalize a list of our own bfore we start any formal talks. I see no problem with letting the Authorities that we are forming and giving them a point of contact but we should have a stance to show them as well.

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We should have a document of this type as well as links to the Listing guidelines of the various listing sites.

 

Here is a first draft (Mostly Plagarized):

 

DO ask for permission to place a cache.

 

One of the main things you should do is ask for permission to place any traditional physical cache. You should contact landowners, Land Managers or city governments and Provincial or National park offices.

 

Who does allows caches at this time?

 

Who does NOT allow caches at this time?

 

Ontario Parks has requested that no caches of any type be placed on there land until such a time as they have formalized their plicy on Geocaching.

 

Roads and Railroad Right-of-Ways

 

NEVER place a cache within 150 feet of any railroad line. Never place a cache in a roadway right-of-way such as inside of cloverleaf off ramps, etc. You must be able to legally park to hunt for any cache.

 

Some other placement considerations.

 

The cacher that places the cache is responsible for the cache placement. Keep that in mind as you research an area for a cache. Never bury a cache container. If you are considering a virtual cache you must be sure that there is no way a traditional physical cache could be placed. A buffer of 0.16 KM (161 Meters) is in place for cache approval. You would not want to close out a great area for a traditional cache out by creating a quick virtual cache. Consider making your virtual target a part of a multi-cache with a traditional container at the end of the hunt.

 

Placing caches while traveling.

 

We recommend that you not place traditional physical caches while on vacation or business unless you have contacted a cacher in the area and have an agreement with them that they will look after your cache for you. If you have a problem with the cache you have no way to check it in a timely manner and it will probably be archived if there are issues.

 

What you do and do not want to put in the caches.

 

Geocaching is meant to be a fun friendly family sport. Only put things in caches that you would want a child to find. Kids do beat their parents to the cache now and then! Do not put any food in caches since it attracts animals. Do not put any knives, matches, lighters or other dangerous items of this nature in a cache. Water bottles are a bad idea in the winter since they freeze and rupture.

 

Cache Types:

 

Traditional caches -- Plastic containers, ammo boxes, etc.

Multi-Cache -- Several stages to the final location.

Virtual Cache -- No cache box, answer a question for credit.

Letterbox Hybrid -- Cache with a stamp, see letterboxing.org

Webcam Cache -- Virtual site where a web photo is taken.

Unknown Cache -- You'll find out when you get there!!!

Event Cache -- Geocachers meeting to discuss Geocaching.

 

Where can I learn more about Geocaching?

 

In addition to the resources on the GGA Online site, there is a wealth of geocaching information on the Internet. The main geocaching site is geocaching.com Links to other good sites are available from the OGA Links Page. But, perhaps the best way to learn more about geocaching to talk with a geocacher. Stop by our next meeting and talk to some of the more experienced cachers.

 

Finding a Cache

 

In addition to geocaching.com's guidelines for finding a cache these are some things to keep in mind in your cache hunt:

Stay on trails as much as possible, so that you are not "bushwhacking" unnecessarily.

This may be easier if you can take a map with you, so you have an idea of where the cache will be in relation to the trails.

 

Hiding a Cache

 

Please follow geocaching.com's guidelines for hiding a cache In addition to these, we would encourage you to consider these suggestions:

Be aware of how many caches are located nearby. If there are several, most likely your cache would be more appreciated in an area where there are fewer caches.

Place your caches so that geocachers can take existing trails most of the way in.

When you post your cache, include a map of the park or coordinates of a good spot to leave your car and suggest which trails to use.

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I'm just not sure we should be contacting them right now.  Perhaps once we have established some guidelines with others, such as Ontario Parks and HCA, with whom we are already in some sort of discussion, then it may be prudent.  If the attitude above is still prevalent, we may meet some serious resistance.

A-B that would probably be the wise thing to do for the time-being based on the reasons you gave. However I wouldn't want to see the sleeping giant wake-up without us there to guide them to get up on the right side of the bed.

I would be surprised if they had not already had some form of discussion with the various parks management people. A positive formal policy by Ontario Parks or HCA would certainly go a long way in helping the BT decide.

 

Cache on, Olar

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Agreed.

 

We already have two groups that we should work with. Those being Hamilton Conservation Authority and Ontario Parks.

 

And I agree that we need to have our guidelines in place before we get into meanful discusions with them.

 

I only wanted them to know that we are working towards guidlines and organizing ourselves.

 

But it would be best, like many have suggested, to wait on contacting the BTA until we have an agreeement with the government groups we have talked with, or had encounters with.

 

 

So, how should we go about setting up CITO for the 2nd Annual event? I think that a conservation area or park is a great start. What else can we do, any ideas out there?

 

<_< The Blue Quasar

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I don't know if a CITO discussion should be started in another discussion forum but I just want to say that the one cache that I visited that screamed 'CITO Event' to me was Algonquin Bound's "Bayview Point Cache" (GCH0VT) - in the Hamilton area (hence getting on the good side of the HCA although it could be on RBG land?). Anyway, that one has my vote.

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My suggestion would be to schedule a CITO cleanup in the Hamilton area. I would like to recommend the Spencer Creek trail (I believe the name is this) Its the trail on which the Johnny Cache (Encore Performance) is located. It is a great walking path that has become a virtual garbage dump. I believe this trail falls under the HCA area so we would have to get clearance I would imagine.

 

Just a thought ,

 

Happy Caching!

 

Logger

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Hard Oiler - Essex, Kent, Lambton, Huron, Middlesex, Elgin

Purple Fever / Northern Eagle - Halton, Peel

Trimbles Trek - Wellington (Bruce, Grey and Dufferin I hope too)

The Daniel Boone Gang - Hamilton Wentworth, Brant

Donna G - Peterborough, Durham, Victoria, Northumberland (in discussion)

White Owl - Cochrane, Thunder Bay, Rainy River, Kenora (in discussion)

And I will take on Niagara, Haldimand Norfolk

 

I think if you are going to have any type of CITO event you should be using these local cachers and have them find a spot in there respective areas and organize as many local ones so more cachers can participate.

 

Get local media involved and show as many levels of govrnment staff what Geocaching is about.

 

I think what you should do is show how geocaching is a great tool for tourism in an area. After all the media reports this week about how tourism is suffering in this province with all the negative press recently.

 

I have rethought how we can use Geocaching and I think we need to approach all the local area's councils and show them how many visitors have come to there area to find a cache and show the logs to them with all the positive comments about what the cachers saw and did in there area well hunting for the cache.

 

Although most of us live in the province, we all travel to differant areas to hunt caches. We may buy gas, have lunch, go shopping. This is spenting money and helping the local merchants out.

 

Maybe we need to forget about dealing with the parks staff and waiting for them to come up with there guidelines now that it is over a year with no results. Go after the tourist and promotional departments and show them the benefits of of Geocaching and let them put the preasure on there peers for a solution to our problems.

 

When you get your loc files for each area up and running we could approach local area's and get them to post a link on there page and say this is a Geocache friendly govrnment with a link to local caches in the area.

 

We all remember the old saying "Money Talks"

 

<_<

Edited by gm100guy

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Notifying the media of CITO events is definitely a good idea, by reinforcing a positive image of geocaching and geocachers. I think any time a CITO event is held the media should be notified.

 

Another good idea would be to get members of the local government to show up. They love having their picture taken. If they show up then they will have to recognize the benefits of local geocahers.

 

Does OGA have someone to take of media relations? If not, then should it.

Edited by Keith Watson

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Excellent ideas there from GM100GUY and Keith Watson.

 

So, since that seems agreeable to everyone. I'm going to say that I would like to see a CITO event hosted by the lead organizer for each region of Ontario.

 

Advise your local MPP and regional government. Contact the local paper and if relevant the news department of the local radio stations.

 

Can someone volunteer to write up a 'press release' for approval here that can used to blanket the above groups?

 

I think also that we should have uniform naming for the CITO events.

 

How about....

 

OGA-CITO-Niagara

OGA-CITO-Hamilton

OGA-CITO-Halton

OGA-CITO-Toronto

etc

 

You get the idea. That way anyone that searches for OGA-CITO will get a list of all the Earth Day CITO events.

 

We don't have to limit ourselves to only cleaning one place, but I think all the events under Hamilton or Wellington or wherever should be listed as one CITO event.

 

I really hope that we can also list these events on a web page. I know I am repeating myself here, but I really don't know where to start with that.

 

How do we get a web site? How do we acquire hosting? Can more than one person work on the pages? I think having a site up by Valentine's Day would be a good idea. Just a basic one to build upon.

 

I have a picture in my head of what I see down the road, but again I cannot do any of that stuff. I need a lot of help in that department. Please step up if you can.

 

:D The Blue Quasar

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To get a webpage, you first have to register a name.

 

Go to your favourite search engine and type "domain registration" and you'll get a whole list of places that will register your domain name.

 

If you want a .ca webpage, there are lots sites for those as well but most non-Canadian registration sites do not have the .ca option.

 

The first thing you do is register the site. This will cost about $30/year. Worry about hosting later which may cost $100 or more (although some are cetainly cheaper.

 

I did check and oga.ca is taken. Both ontariogeocaching.ca and canadageocaching.ca are available. (those are the only two I checked).

 

If I may suggest go for something Canadian rather than just Ontario and then you can provide links to other provincial sites as they come up.

 

For the ontario site the address can simply be (as an example):

 

canadageocaching.ca/ontario

 

Once you have the website name you can just sit on it until the website is up. A website is created on a home computer and then, when ready, uploaded up to the server/host. Once it is up, any number of people can update it but you'd likely want just one person to do it the actual uploading.

 

I could help you with the website but I am pretty busy. There are any number of website creation tools on the net that would walk you through the creation of a basic site. I think sympatico may have such a tool but do a search if they don't.

 

There are programs out there for this specific purpose. Some are free. Others can get pretty expensive. I have used Adobe Golive in the past and it is amazing - but expensive.

 

Good luck.

 

Les.

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New zones are being developed to simply the list of caches in an area.

 

This is being done to improve the ease of getting data under control.

 

A map with the new zones will be posted soon, and some zones will overlap others which is actually a good thing.

 

:blink: The Blue Quasar

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You might want to contact these folks for information about dealing with park authorities. They have placed several caches in Florida State Parks with permission and have developed a set of guidelines -- as far as I can tell -- to ensure everyone comes away happy.

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For anyone that is interested.

 

There will be a chat session on the "Golden Horseshoe" web site at 9pm on Wednesday.

 

All are welcome, and there will be discussion of territories and we see what else comes up.

 

http://www.geocaching.webhop.org

 

This will be as informal as possible.

 

:o The Blue Quasar

 

I chose the above site because it is in Ontario, and the web master for that site is our web master. Until ours is finished things like this may happen from time to time.

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For anyone that is interested.

 

There will be a chat session on the "Golden Horseshoe" web site at 9pm on Wednesday.

 

I will be at work so it is unlikely that I will show up. Sorry Kids gotta eat and Ma wants to wear clothes. :)

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This is a copy of an Email sent regarding the creation of a document for the OGA. It has been sent to many people and Blind Carbon Copy was used to protect the privacy of individual Email addresses. The creation of the document was breifly discussed during the online chat session Wed Jan 28th, 2004.

 

If you wish to send your document to me, please do so in either .txt format, .doc format or .wpd format. I current am using MSWord.

 

<exerpt pasted from email>

 

Currently I am looking for several people to author a document that can be used to create a final document for giving to government groups such as the Hamilton Conservation Authority and Ontario Parks to illustrated the position of OGA and proper cache placement guidelines.

 

Please feel free to submit a document covering any and all topics you feel should be represented. This document should be no less than 300 words and no more than 500 words. All topics within said document should be separated into paragraphs.

 

:mad: The Blue Quasar

 

While this email may sound like something out of a highschool lecture, it is the most clear way I could express what I am looking for.

 

Thanks for any content you are able to provide.

 

Topics to consider: Protection of Environmental Secure Areas; Placement of caches - Distance from trail; Placement of caches - Obtaining official approval; Identification requirements of an approved cache; Registering a cache with the local land owner; Support a local land owner can expect from OGA and/or the cache owner; Prevention of bush-wacking and other impact activities; Promotion of CITO and local tourism; Promotion of family activity and exercise and public awareness of our greenspaces.

 

This list is not complete, feel free to document any other idea that you feel is appropriate.

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Have you considdered becoming a non profit organization?... first off, it will write off buying a domain name and wed space.... plus if every so often, you guys need some coin for the site, you can ask the members, (and it's a tax write off).

 

Just wondering???....

 

Fish

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We have plans to implement that exact idea sometime after we get the web site operational.

 

First we wanted to see the level of interest, amount of free memberships and get feedback before moving ahead.

 

Let me say again however that membership to the OGA will be FREE!!! All pages would be available to all parties and if at some time in the future there is areas of commerce or donation then OGA would cetainly become a non-profit organization and most likely receive any monies through a PayPal account.

 

That account would be used for OGA event prizes, purchasing of web domain services, and purchasing equipment to further the developement of the OGA's educational format, be it GPS units for working with Scouts or Cadets, or other similiar endevours, and also to fund CITO events.

 

:mad: The Blue Quasar

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I had argued against the OGA trying to get charity status in another thread.

 

Do you really think that the Canadian taxpayer would agree to subsidize the proposed group?

 

By becoming a charity, you ensure that anyone who contributes to the group reduces the amount of tax he/she has to pay. Thus increasing the amount of tax paid by everyone else.

 

Can you in good conscience pursue charitable status? Come on, the costs won't be so high that they cannot be funded by the members. Anyway, given the very minor costs involved, the organization could probably make money just by advertizing etc.

 

Not only is it ethically wrong (in my view) to seek charitable status, it is not needed. The organization could easily make money which can then be used to fund your lobby efforts.

 

I have been involved in a similar venture in the past. Instead of getting charitable status, a few original members contributed minor $s. We then got funding from two private companies (in business related to our efforts) in exchange for clear thanks on our website.

 

We also solicited donations from a wider group of interested parties via a yearly membership and easily raised the money we needed. It is not a lot of money but the start up costs were just a few thousand and the ongoing costs will be covered by the membership.

 

If the members of this board can't kick in $20-$30/year for a membership then don't expect the Canadian public at large to fund your efforts.

 

Please rethink this.

 

Les.

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Please re-think Trolling.

 

The nice thing about Ethics is that not everyone has to live by yours. I am sure there are many Charitable groups that some people may object to and feel shouldn't get that status.

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Halden,

 

Just because you disagree with me does not make me a troll.

 

You'll also note that I put "in my view" when mentioning ethics. I never claimed to be the arbiter of what is right and wrong in the universe.

 

Just because other people set up false charities does not mean that OGA should.

 

Les.

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By becoming a charity, you ensure that anyone who contributes to the group reduces the amount of tax he/she has to pay. Thus increasing the amount of tax paid by everyone else.

 

Les, I didn't see any mention of charity or charitable status, until you brought it up. I've looked through and still don't see it. If I missed it, please point it out.

 

Forgive me, since I am not a lawyer, but it is my layman's understanding that there are quite stringent differences between "Non-Profit", "Not-for-profit" and "Charity" status'. I suspect that there are different tax guidelines for each of them. Perhaps a Geocaching lawyer can jump in here.

 

Since every member or potential member of OGA pays taxes, and since, to my knowledge, no one has suggested either getting money from the government or being subsidized or indeed any need for monies, I can't see how this affects other taxpayers.

 

Can you in good conscience pursue charitable status? Come on, the costs won't be so high that they cannot be funded by the members.

 

Where do you see any need for concern? From what I have read, it sounds like everyone feels we should have no problem being "Self-supporting". I certainky believe that. I believe there is no valid reason to tax the OGA, per se, since, as I said, all the members already pay taxes. The existence of the Organization is, pardon this, virtually virtual, therefore probably shouldn't pay any additional tax. If that end, and probably some other legal mumbo-jumbo is satisfied by registering as "Not-for-profit" or whichever title is appropriate, what harm can come of it?

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A.B.

 

I appologize if I misunderstood Fish's comments. What he said was that if OGA was non-profit then money given to it by members would be a tax write off.

 

In consideration of his comment, his non-profit sounds like a chartiy. A non-profit organization cannot give out tax reciepts. A charity can. If a charity gives out a tax reciept, then whoever gives the money to the charity can reduce his/her taxable income by an amount equal to a % of the charitable donation (17% I think up to some level and then the % goes up.)

 

If I can reduce my taxable income by giving money to OGA then I pay less tax then I would otherwise. And the reason I pay less tax is that OGA is a charity. My payment to OGA is not a tax write off unless it is a charity. A payment to a non-profit organization is not a tax write off.

 

So I believe my comments against OGA becoming a charity are accurate. If I am somehow mistaken then I would be pleased to be corrected.

 

Again, I don't think OGA should become a charity because I don't think it is right that our government should get less $s through donations to OGA.

 

I hope that makes sense.

 

Les.

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Perhaps my vernacular was incorrect, or maybe I am not clear on what is required to be an "Organization".

 

OGA is not interested in Charity status, nor is it interested in being supported by anyone other than it's own members or groups that agree with our ideals that would like to promote our educational and recreational platform.

 

Since I am not a lawyer, I can only say that in the plainest simplest terms.

 

"If we receive money from whatever we do, it will all be channelled back out to the geocaching community in ways that have been approved by the Ontario Geocaching Association. Those ways include, but are not limited to, Events, Education and Environment"

 

Call them the 3 E's of OGA, if you feel you need to put a label on them.

 

All I know is that No member of OGA wants to be sued because some one got hurt at an OGA event, and people like to know that any money they contribute whether it be through merchandise or donation is going to the programs they support.

 

:) The Blue Quasar

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Les if you are going to launch a crusade against geocaching/geocachers and their endeavours, it would be a good call if you got your story straight. It's time for some pro or con Lessenergy style.

 

CON:

"I had argued against the OGA trying to get charity status in another thread."

 

PRO:

"If you really worked at it, you could probably apply and get charity status"

 

What is it Les? Charity or no Charity :)

Edited by The Two Navigators

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So in his anti-charity post he references his pro-charity post. Very Clear Les. Very efficient Trolling. Please move back to your crusade to peg cachers as a detriment to the environment.

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My throwing out the idea of a non-profit org actually came from looking at the Toronto Ghosts website.... They are an Ontario non-profit organization. At least I figure we can prove geocaches are real! I have no interest in Geocaching becoming a charity. I was merely making a suggestion. I have noticed the trolling from lessenergy since I got back from the gulf.... His total lack of caching, for the amount of time he's been registered, speaks volumes.

 

Anyways, When I get out to Ontario in the summer, I hope to be able to spend time helping the Oga.

 

Thanks gang,

 

Fish

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To be clear.

 

I never had a pro-charity post. You can quote only a portion of my previous post if you want but it does not change the meaning of my prior post.

 

It is dishonest of you Two Navigators to so obviously take only a portion of my prior post to make it seem that I was pro-charity then and am not now.

 

My prior post also had this comment:

 

Personally, while you could probably get charitable status with some good creative writting on the application, I would ask that you not do this. It would be unethical, in my view, to access public funds for your endeavor.

 

I understand that you do not like me. Fair enough. But don't misrepresent my opinions when you quote me.

 

Thank you.

 

Les.

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Congrats on starting a local group. Best of luck to all of you.

 

I checked out the BC site and it is really amazing. Incredibly well done.

 

What is pretty obvious from the BC site is that there is a great potential for revenue generation by way of advertising and memberships. That is also great.

 

If I may make a suggestion about the Ontario group. When you formalize this and create the site, please make sure that any funds generated are retained by the organization. I think the worst thing that could happen would be for the organization to morph into a private enterprise with the profits going to an individual or small group.

 

At some point, you'll want to incorporate (if for no other reason than to protect the leadershp from lawsuits) so make sure your articles of incorporation clearly state how revenues are to be used.

 

If it has not yet occured to you, it may in the future - If you really worked at it, you could probably apply and get charity status - all you really have to do is demonstrate public goals for your organization that would not be considered lobbying. (Lobbying is one thing that the approvers really frown on.) Personally, while you could probably get charitable status with some good creative writting on the application, I would ask that you not do this. It would be unethical, in my view, to access public funds for your endeavor.

 

It is not likely in your thought process to create an alternative to GC.com but, as is obvious from the BC website, the potential for a local listing service is tremendous and it would be great for you to have more control over the direction that the sport takes locally. There is no good reason for Ontario (or Canadian) practitioners of the sport to have their activities dictated by someone in Seattle (?) and an active, revenue generating local organization would be intregal to creating a local alternative.

 

Finally, you may consider creating an umbrella Canadian organization at some point with each province as a mostly independent entity - much like federal and provincial political parties are so that any trans-provincial issues can be addressed in a coherent way. As such, you may want to liason with the BC group and any others that pop up to see if you can create some consistent policies/bylaws now while the rules for each group are still malleable.

 

By analogy:

 

You may have read in history books about local railroads that were created with each local owner deciding on his own what gage the rails should be. As the mode of transportation grew, the costs associated with moving cargo and passengers from one rail car to another simply because one company's train could not travel on another company's line were enormous. I believe this is still a problem in Eastern Europe.

 

Don't make the same mistake with the local Ontario organization if you can help it. Do everything you can to ensure that the Ontario organization can be integrated into a national organization at some point in the future. In order to ease this, you may want to ensure that there are common processes, policies and goals with other provincial organizations. Now, while these organizations are forming, is the time to create the commonality that will make the eventual creation of a national organization easier.

 

 

Les.

 

There is your entire post Les as to not Mis-quote. I see nothing warning against the ethical dangers of Charity status in your post. In fact you were the first person to suggest that OGA apply for Charitable status.

 

Make up your mind and/or move along.

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Halden. Here is my entire paragraph dealing with charitable status. Please read it again as I think you missed what I was saying.

 

Thanks.

 

Les.

 

If it has not yet occured to you, it may in the future - If you really worked at it, you could probably apply and get charity status - all you really have to do is demonstrate public goals for your organization that would not be considered lobbying. (Lobbying is one thing that the approvers really frown on.) Personally, while you could probably get charitable status with some good creative writting on the application, I would ask that you not do this. It would be unethical, in my view, to access public funds for your endeavor.

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It seems that, in Ontario, the terms "Not-for-profit" and "Charitable" are synonymous. Not-for-Profit Incorporator's Handbook

 

If and when we get to that point, the status that the OGA would be more likely to pursue, is "Non-profit", perhaps including incorporation. A Guide to Bookkeeping for Non-Profit Organizations

 

Nevertheless, though I seriously doubt that the OGA would pursue (or qualify for) charitable status, it is very early to be worrying or arguing about such matters. We've barely started. To stretch the point, it is rather like arguing about who should regulate caches on the Moon, or Mars. We're just not close enough to worry much about it. :)

 

Not that there cannot be negative or diametrically opposed opinions, but we are a fledgling organization. Let's try to keep ideas positive and constructive and focused on the level we are at, or even a few levels down the road. A discussion, for example, on whether or not we should allow nudie pictures on our web-site, would be a valid and contructive (and probably very heated) :) debate, since the web-site is being built as we speak. Whether we should charge money for viewing of such pics is jumping the gun, since we haven't yet established that we will have them. :D

 

If Fish, or anyone else, offers to donate $1,000,000 or so, on the condition that he gets to write it off on his tax return, my guess is that we would then have a valid reason to debate whether or not we should pursue charitable status. :)

 

Right now, let's build a web-site and find some caches! :D

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Right you are AB. I am guitly of Jumping the Gun here. First things first. i apologize for derailing the thread in a less than constructive way.

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I have to agree with AB, having setup and worked with a few Charitable and Non-profit/Not for Profit orgs in the past, I can't see any situation under the current mandate of OGA that you could even dream of qualifing for Charitable status therefore it is a mute point. As for a Non-Profit incorporation this should be done ASAP once the initially planning is taken care of and certainly before Any events under the OGA banner are held. The reason is that if someone were to say fall and break a leg and then sue if there is no incorporation then the members and primarly the board are solely responcable. Something which I don't thing anyone would want to sign up for. Under incorporation of a Non-profit organization OGA would be it's own entity and liababiltiy for the most part stops at it's doors. There are some rules regarding liablity for wages, but I they don't see us having any employee's.

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