Promote the ideals of USALacrosse in Connecticut and the growth of the sport

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Meeting Minutes – November 9, 2011

Attendance: Kerry Brown, Tom Dutchyshyn, Cori Distler, Mark Duclos, Rich Heritage, Marybeth Hodson, Rob Hoynes, George Longyear, Erin Michaud, Phil Schneider, Pat Thibideau.

Call to Order: 7:15 PM by Rich Heritage, President
President and Treasurer’s Report
Rich discussed the USL Chapter Summary Report for Quarter 3 (July 1 – September 30).  There was a  7-8% growth in Chapter membership from 2010 to 2011. The summary detailed the Chapter’s use of the USL Education and Training department, indicating that 631 coaches completed the Level One Online Course and 601 coaches completed the Level One Instructional Clinic. 
Rich discussed the CLF Schedule of Cash Flow, addressing questions about the difference in cash receipts and disbursements for a few of the line items.  Pat Thibideau explained that the there is a 5-year life expectancy for the  Boys Super Juniors jerseys, so that expense should not be realized again until 2016, wear and tear withstanding. Rich explained that there was an LCD projector and screen purchased for the CT Lacrosse Convention, adding to the total disbursements for that line item.

Committee Reports:

Hall of Fame
Rob Hoynes reported that registration numbers were about 210, with an anticipated last minute surge bringing the projected number to approximately 230. There are 8 inductees this year. Also in attendance will be Johnny Magwood, a member of the USL Foundation Executive Board.
Rich stated that the nomination criteria and process is posted on the CLF website.  There will be a continued effort on behalf of the CLF to publicize the event.

Training and Education
Rich discussed the upcoming 2012 events:
The CT Lacrosse Coaches Convention is scheduled for January 8, 2012. The CCC Committee will be convening shortly.
There are two Level One Coaches Clinics scheduled:
February 12, 2012 in Groton and March 18, 2012 in Norwalk. Details are being finalized.
A Level Two Coaches Clinic is scheduled for March 4, 2012 in Farmington.

Grant Committee
Mark Duclos stated the minutes will be posted in 1-2 weeks.  Most all requests were granted. He reiterated the Grant Committee’s position on Grants and Public Funding. For example, grants are not approved for public high school programs, as the Chapter does not want to accept the role of “filling the funding gap” for programs which should be properly funded through their Board of Education.

U13 and U15 Youth Festivals
Rich reported that USL has established a new format for 2012 based from feedback from their membership. The LaxFest name has been changed to “West Regional Championship, Central Regional Championship, and Southeast Regional Championship” all of which will precede the U15 National Championship. The Regional Championships will be competitive events with game scores recorded. Each region will host U11, U13, and U15 divisions for both boys and girls. Teams are guaranteed 4 games. Each division will crown a Regional Champion.  In the U15 division, the top 4 teams from each region will automatically qualify for the U15 National Championships. The West event will be held in Phoenix, AZ on June 1-3, the Central event will be held in Arlington, TX on June 8-10, and the Southeast event will be held in Raleigh, NC on June 15-17. All players, coaches and chaperones will stay in designated hotels. Parents can stay in the same hotels and can share rooms with their children.  Meals will no longer be provided. All sites will have concessions and nearby restaurants.  There will be no opening ceremony but rather an opening night dinner for players, coaches, chaperones and parents.  Everyone will be responsible for their own transportation. Parking will be free for parents and fans.  Team registration is currently open. Each facility can accommodate 60 teams.
With feedback from its members, the CLF will decide if it will hold tryouts to form a “CT” team for each division.
There was discussion about the new format.  All agreed the dates were better. As the event is now competitive, there may be more Club teams participating which could reduce the number and caliber of players available for a “CT” team. 

Super Juniors
Pat reported that the Super Junior committee will convene soon to start preparing for the 2012 event. There was discussion about the conflict last year with the Under Armour event and eligibility issues with the high school players.  Pat also stated that the Under Armour event also affected the overall attendance of college coaches to the Super Junior event.

Lower New Englands
Marybeth reported that last year’s event went well. It is uncertain if Lisa Parsons is able to chair the event again this year. The event takes place on Memorial Day weekend. CT Public High School coaches are required to submit a letter to the CIAC asking for permission for their players to tryout and, if selected, attend the National Tournament because the dates for both are within the regular season.  The information for LNE’s will be distributed to all public and private high school coaches in a timely manner so that all deadlines can be met.

New Business:

Girls Youth Officiating Training
Erin Michaud, the new Chair of the CT Women’s Lacrosse Officials Association, talked about the restructuring ideas for the CWLOA in regards to training youth officials.  Discussion followed regarding where the problems seemed to be most prevalent in the past, and how to make things work more smoothly in the future. She affirms the need for more administrative support in organizing and delivering the training opportunities.  She discussed either splitting the state into regions and having a coordinator for each region, or adding more administrative positions at the central hub, specifically a “Registration” person and a “Coordinator.”  With each person’s role clearly defined, the problems that occurred in the past with communication between site coordinators, instructors, trainees and parents could be minimized.  There was also discussion around limiting the number of trainees, as many more are trained than actually get on the field to ref. This is not a problem in the classroom, but trying to fit them all in for field training has been difficult and results in “pushing them through” just to get a certification card issued.  Erin reiterated the goals for this year: To improve communication and achieve consistency in the quality of those being certified. 

New USL Rules for Boys and Girls Youth Lacrosse
The new USL Rules for Boys and Girls Youth Lacrosse were approved by the USL Board of Directors in September.  One of the girls rules states that at the U15 level, there must be 2 USL trained umpires, one of which has a Local rating (an adult umpire who is qualified to umpire all Youth level, Middle School, High School JV and Varsity games).  This will lessen the need for Youth/Juniors umpires but put more of a demand on adult umpires with a Local or higher ratings.
Teams will be organized by age. If grades are used, that team will play in the age division determined by the oldest player on their roster.
Nomination of Officers
Rich asked that everyone review the current slate of CLF Board Members and make recommendations for new members. USL has a recommended list of Chapter Board positions, most of which we already incorporate.  Rich reminded us that our bylaws state that positions are held for one year and that the December meeting is when nominations to fill board vacancies are accepted and new or renewed board members are selected.

Adjourned: 9:00 PM
Next CT Lacrosse Foundation Meeting: December 14, 2011.  Location TBA.
Respectfully Submitted,
Cori Distler
CLF Secretary