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USACA issued a release on March 29th outlining its plans to 'significantly' widen the direct involvement of USACA members in setting a new direction of USA Cricket.
In the release, USACA noted that the board had unanimously resolved that all leagues, associations and academies that paid their membership dues for at least eight teams in 2012 and 2013 are considered full members in good standing.
The organization will also grant full membership on a case by case basis to leagues that paid their dues in 2013. "The intent in our charter has always been to widen the playing and support of cricket in the US," President Gladstone Dainty is quoted as saying.
USACA did not provide a list of leagues that meet the criteria for good standing that might be eligible for full membership. When reached for comment, USACA Secretary Mascelles Bailey said that he expects to prepare an accurate list of member leagues that meet the criteria next week. He said that USACA had a total of 49 fee paying members in 2013, including leagues, academies and clubs. In DreamCricket's estimate, fewer than 15 league members paid their dues both in 2012 and 2013.
It is USACA's second decision that could potentially have the effect of widening the involvement of the leagues. USACA's press release suggests that the board can approve leagues that had paid their dues for 2013 (and not 2012) on a 'case by case' basis. Last time USACA board approved voting rights for leagues on a 'case by case' basis, it admitted 3 of the 12 leagues that were reviewed. Many questioned whether the board had acted impartially.
In 2012, USACA applied nine different criteria and ruled ruled to have all but 15 of the 47 leagues disqualified from voting. Three of those criteria were not even obligations contained in the USACA constitution.
When asked to comment on whether USACA would apply the nine 'compliance' criteria when determining which league could vote, the USACA secretary said that the new constitution will likely have new or changed requirements. He did not think that the nine criteria would be applied. However, he maintained that each league being considered for full membership must have demonstrated that it paid for all of its member clubs during 2012 and 2013.
Separately, a post on USACA's official Facebook page claimed that USACA was waiving all fees for 2014. When asked to comment on the Facebook post, Mr. Bailey disclaimed that post (screenshot at right).
The USACA press release from March 24th lays out the exact USACA policy regarding fees, Mr. Bailey said. He clarified that USACA fees remained at $100 but explained that leagues had the option of reinvesting the entire amount of USACA fees for youth development. In order to retain the USACA fees, a league must submit a two-page plan outlining how it will invest the USACA fees for development of youth cricket. USACA will accept the Plan and allow the member to retain the USACA membership fees as a contribution toward local youth development activities.
Mr. Bailey said it was too early to name Brian Walters' replacement as the CW Representative and the Chair of the Governance Implementation Committee. He said that the USACA website was incorrect in respect of Walters being the Chair of the Implementation Committee. Sheldon Mollineau was the Chair of the Committee and he will continue in that role, he said. USACA will issue a press release once a replacement for CW representative was found.