All leagues subject to USBC Rule 117a should have had a league prize fund approved and voted on since the 5th week of bowling. That prize fund needs to comply with any rules that have been adopted by the league.
On March 15, 2020, the GLCUSBC posted the document entitled “LEAGUE, TOURNAMENT AND ASSOCIATION FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS CONCERNING THE CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19)” to its NEWS page.
The state-mandated closing of Illinois bowling centers invoked USBC emergency provisions for how to resolve matters the league could encounter. I want to provide some insight on how to resolve issues with league prize funds.
To make this easier, we have been encouraging all leagues to resume bowling and to complete their season if the proprietor or management will be able to provide the lanes for the extended number of days. If not, the league will have to hold a meeting to determine its next course of action.
Due to the social gathering limitations in effect, these meetings can happen using various social media applications like Facebook Live, Zoom, Skype, Hangouts, or whatever application your league is capable of using as a common medium.
The emergency classification changes how league rules are updated or changed subject to the needs of the league. All votes are decided by a simple majority decision of the league officers and the board made up of all of the league’s captains. Captains should share all details about potential league rule changes with their teammates before casting a deciding vote.
Prize funds will be the most difficult adjustment a league will have to consider, if they decide to shorten their season or terminate it completely, based on the last day they bowled.
Prize funds are typically structured subject to the league’s preseason vote for league play, positions rounds, and playoffs in the process of creating segments thus awarding two more teams a chance to make the playoffs to determine a champion.
This is typically easy when you complete the season but challenging when you lose weeks to complete a segment or abandon the season before you complete the playoffs to determine your champion.
A league that has segments (quarters, thirds, or halves) has created a champion for a portion of the league season. If the league abandons having playoffs, the adjusted prize fund should include any winner of a segment as co-champions. For example, a team in first place on the date a segment is terminated is determined as the champion of that segment and an equal co-champion.
Income Shortages Subject to Reduced Weeks
Since all income and expenses should be structured by your prize fund when you stop bowling, you no longer have a lineage expense. The fees for league officers should also be prorated subject to the number of weeks respectively.
Basic Rule Option to Consider
If a league season was structured to bowl 35 weeks, and at week 28 the season is terminated, the income that is associated with the prize fund would be 80%. If the league adjusts all expenses, position round and final standing payouts to 80% of the full season amount, every bowler gets the same prorated share of the prize fund as design.
If the prize fund is set up in a spreadsheet, the updates and revisions can be quickly calculated and presented to the officers and league board for approval. Obviously, an additional adjustment would be made for bowlers who are in arrears. Any bowler who paid in advance of the 28 weeks would get a full refund of any night not bowled.
Please Note: these are just guidelines and each league has the right to determine and adopt the rules to which it decides to follow.
If you need further assistance or guidance, please do not hesitate to call on your local association for assistance.