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The US Capitol

Government Relations

Chairman Message

Hello, for those that may not know who I am, my name is Spence Rees and I am the State Government Relations Chairperson.  Everyone including me asks what does this committee do?  Well we try to monitor any legislation coming before our local, state, or federal governments to see if any proposed legislature will affect the local lodges, the state association, or the ELKS as a whole. If you hear of anything that we may need to be aware of please send me a copy or a link to

That is only one part of what we do. We are also responsible for ensuring that the order and our lodges are able to retain their non profit status!  How do we do this you ask? We can’t! Not without you doing your part! Every Lodge has a Charity Workbook, if you haven't seen it ask your secretary or go to CHARITY WORKBOOK ( - manuals - charity workbook and click on download not the manual itself.) This manual has all of the reporting codes and blank sheets you can copy and use for getting the information to your secretary.

So you are now saying I dusted off the manual now what do I do with it? Remember our whole reason for existence is to provide charitable, civic and community assistance. Everything we do is in some way related to one of these categories. If you are doing anything that is related to one of these categories, report it. The easiest way is to keep a Government Relations Monthly reporting form handy. 

It is highly suggested that you fill out this report monthly as it is cumulative for the whole year. 
That way you won’t forget to enter something throughout the year. Are you not sure if something should be reported? If in doubt fill it out. The secretary can make the determination. If the secretary has a question I will be glad to make the call on whether it should be in there or not. I would rather turn stuff down then beg for the input. One thing that seems to get overlooked is one of the largest charitable items that every lodge is pretty much required to do: ENF! ALL DONATIONS to ENF are reportable! 

Even though we do a great job sending them to ENF we do not fill out our charitable reporting forms!  Make sure you put that one in your books. If you do something like a Veterans Bingo once a month, you can make an average entry one time to cover the year. (if 3 ELKS go once a month and drive 10 miles each way and spend 4 hours each time. 3*4=12 12*12mos=144 ELK Hours 3*10miles=30 30*2 both ways=60 60*12=720 ELK miles) plus expenses for food, games etc. plus cash given and date it 3/31 of the lodge year end, and you don't have to worry about it again! Easy! Mid Winter, State and National conventions. If you are attending, part of the business meeting is all about the charitable works we do… Therefore the GL committee has determined that 1/2 of the business meeting time and travel to and from is …. Reportable! This does not count the time you take to do shots at the hospitality rooms!

OK so you filled out the form now what… Are you reporting for a state committee? or your local lodge? If you are doing this report for a local lodge event you will give or send these reports to your local lodge secretary. If you are doing this work as a district or state chairperson then your reports will go to myself. I will compile them and give them to the State Secretary for filing on CLMS for the state.

Thank you for your time and attention. I hope that now that you know, or have been reminded, about charitable reporting I will be receiving reports from the state committees. On a monthly basis, I will be checking to see if the local lodges are reporting as well. If we do not report what we are doing, we may lose our non-profit status. I don't think any of us want that to happen.


Spence Rees



13330 Seaman Rd., Vancleave, MS 39565

What is Reportable?

This is just a partial list of items you should include in your charitable reporting including Volunteer Time, Mileage, and cash/items donated.

  • ENF

  • Memorial Service

  • Eye Clinic

  • Meadowood

  • Betty Hise

  • Mentoring

  • Boy Scouts/Cub Scouts

  • Eagles Scouts

  • Little League

  • Law Enforcement Night

  • Fireman Night

  • Hoop Shoot

  • Scholarships

  • Picnic

  • Veterans Night

  • Veterans Hospital Visits

  • Meals on Wheels

  • Make-A-Wish Foundation

  • Collect Eye Glasses

  • Red Cross Blood Drive

  • Back to School Program

  • Charity Poker Night

  • Drug Free Parties

  • Bingo

  • Cruise On

  • Irish Festival

  • Cancer Research

  • Charity Breakfast

  • Golf Tournament

  • Taco Night

  • Hamburger Night

  • Oktoberfest Booth

  • Christmas Food Baskets

  • Children Christmas Party

  • Easter Egg Hunts

  • Ladies Organizations Donations

  • Local Police Departments

  • County Sheriff Department

  • Police Dog

  • Cancer Care

  • Quilts Donated to Eye Clinic

  • Veterans Hospitals

  • Ladies Tea Party

  • Golf Ball donations to Veterans

  • Relay for Life

  • Drug Trailer

  • Honor Flights to DC

  • Crab Feeds

  • Luaus

  • Legislative Days

  • Conventions

  • DD Clinics

  • Lodge meetings

  • Initiations

  • 3 L Meetings

  • Safe Haven

  • Kids Camp

  • Cerebral Palsy

  • Children Medical Center

  • Elks Rehabilitation System

  • Fire Safety Training

  • Camp Make-A-Dream

  • Elks Therapy Program

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