Statement from the United States Bowling Congress
March 14th, 2020
Public health directives over coronavirus (COVID-19) are evolving. USBC is sharing rules and governing topics in this document as a resource to members if conditions require postponement or cancellation of competition. Below are Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs).
What are a league’s options if schedule changes are deemed appropriate?
Leagues have the option to postpone its sessions or cancel the remaining schedule. The league and bowling center should discuss and agree to changes in the schedule.
Who has the authority to postpone a league session because of health concerns?
The league board of directors (team captains and officers), by majority vote, decides on postponements for the entire league. The issue of rescheduling a postponed session(s) needs to be discussed with the center to determine any effects on the center agreement with the league and any possible scheduling/financial impacts resulting from this action.
Who must approve any agreement to end the league season early because of the coronavirus issue?
USBC is declaring the coronavirus outbreak as an emergency situation and is allowing the league to change its schedule by ending early, by a majority vote of the board of directors. The approval does need to be agreed upon by both the center management and the league board of directors (team captains and officers).
How will ending the league early affect the league prize fund? This will result in the league having less than anticipated funds in any adopted prize list. To amend the adopted prize list based of the funds available, the league board of directors (team captains and officers) are to meet and approve an amended prize list, which must follow the general outline of the current prize list.
How does the league determine their champions the season ends early?
If possible, the league would end their season and declare champions based on the standings after the final date of competition. If a roll-off is necessary, we would advise the league to work with the teams involved to schedule any needed roll-offs as soon as possible, to allow for the orderly closeout of the season.
If a league continues to bowl but members want to withdraw from the league, can the league hold them responsible for league fees?
Any member who withdraws from the league due to the coronavirus outbreak will not be required by USBC to give two weeks’ notice or pay for two weeks in accordance with Rule 114a.
If I withdraw from the league because of the coronavirus outbreak, am I entitled to prize money?
Yes, you are entitled to a prorated share based on the number of weeks paid for.
Can the league board of directors do an email vote to decide these issues?
In order to reduce the need for individuals to gather in one place to make these decisions, an email vote would be allowed as long as all board members can be contacted by email.
Squads were cancelled because of concerns over the coronavirus. Can tournament management reschedule the squads?
Tournament management may extend the tournament by contacting the USBC Rules Team. If the entry deadline has passed, only those individuals originally entered to bowl on the cancelled squad(s) are permitted to bowl on the rescheduled date.
If tournament management cancels the rest of the tournament, how are prizes to be awarded?
Prizes would be based on the number of entries that participated prior to the cancellation of the tournament.
If a tournament is cancelled, are refunds required for those who did not participate?
Yes, all fees paid by the bowlers for events in which they did not compete must be returned.
If a tournament is not cancelled and I decide not to participate, am I entitled to a refund?
USBC is treating the coronavirus as an emergency situation and advising tournament management that they have the authority to issue refunds to any entrant(s) who chose(s) to withdraw from their event. Another option would be to have the entry fee forwarded to the next season’s event.
Can we cancel our Annual Meeting?
Associations should postpone the Annual Meeting to a later date, instead of cancelling, since associations are required by law to hold an annual meeting.
Can we postpone our Annual Meeting until after August 1?
Yes. However, we suggest holding it when reasonably possible within this bowling season. If it cannot be done this bowing season, you will have complications which are addressed in the next three questions.
What happens to the board members terms if our Annual Meeting is postponed until after August 1, 2020?
Those board members whose terms are ending before the Annual Meeting is conducted remain in their position until an election is held or they resign.
What happens to the proposed amendments if our Annual Meeting is postponed until after August 1?
Any amendment that was to go into effect August 1, would be effective immediately upon adoption. This should be stated in the announcement informing the delegates/members of the postponement and prior to the legislative session.
If we hold our Annual Meeting after August 1 and our delegates terms have ended, who represents the association at the State Annual Meeting?
Those delegates terms would extend to this postponed Annual Meeting, since they were elected to represent the association for the 2019-2020 season.
Can we cancel our Association Championship Tournament and/or State Pepsi Championships, or do we need to reschedule it this season to comply with USBC Bylaws?
If an Association Championship Tournament or State Pepsi is cancelled because of the coronavirus outbreak, USBC will not require the association to conduct one this season. We would encourage the association to attempt to reschedule the tournament, but if accommodations cannot be made, USBC will not hold the board responsible for the requirement.