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Franklin Girls Softball Association

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Franklin Softball Association Organizational By-Laws
revised February 2017

 

Article I. NAME

The name of this organization shall be the Franklin Girls Softball Association, referred to herein as FGSA.

Article II. PURPOSE

The purpose of this organization shall be to provide a safe, fun, and challenging environment for Franklin girls to participate in both recreational and competitive softball.

Article III. PARTICIPATION AND MEMBERSHIP

Participation shall be open to all girls living in Franklin that meet age and grade requirements specified for each Division. FGSA may invite girls from surrounding towns to participate, as needed, to form more balanced Divisions or Teams.

 Article IV. REGISTRATION

FGSA has programs running year round. Each has different registration times and processes.

 Spring League - Registration for Spring League players shall take place every year in the November through January timeframe. Registration Fees are to be determined by the Board of Directors. A limited number of hardship waivers are available for families that meet the criteria set forth by FGSA. The FGSA President will approve all hardship waivers.

 Travel/Summer Teams - see attached Addendum A

Article V. OFFICERS & COMMITTEES

The FGSA Board of Directors will consist of the following members:

Executive Committee (3 voting members)

President (only votes in a stalemate), Vice President, Treasurer, Secretary

League Management (4 voting members)

Director of Operations, Communications Director, Sponsorships Director, and Training & Development Director

Division Directors (6 voting members)

Seniors, Juniors, Minors, Intermediates, Instructional, and Fury

Division & League Support (6 non-voting)

Assistant Directors - Instructional, Intermediates, Minors, Juniors, Seniors, and Fury

Additional positions may be appointed at the discretion of the Board of Directors, such as for Concession Committee, Scheduling, and additional Division support.

Program Directors may appoint additional persons to help support the Division but they are not considered FGSA Board Members.

All Board Members & Committee Members will be required to complete & process a CORI Request Form (see attached Addendum B) and attend any training as required by the Board.

Board Members will adhere to the FGSA Code of Conduct- see attached Addendum C

Article VI. ELECTIONS

Election of Board Members shall be held at the Annual Spring meeting, which is open to the public, held in June. Nominations will begin in May. Board membership shall be open to all parents of girls currently eligible to play in the League, as well as to persons in the Franklin community at large, who are willing to serve as Board Members or volunteers. Anyone suspended from League activities due to Code of Conduct violations, will be prohibited from voting or being elected to a Board position. Election shall be a simple majority. If a resignation occurs, the Board of Directors will elect a replacement following the same procedure. Board Members will be elected for a one (1) year term (August-August).

The Election Process will be as follows:

Current League Secretary and/or Treasurer will request nominations for President.

The Election will take place via ballot by current board members.

League/Division Assistants will be appointed by each Director and approved by a general vote of the new Board of Directors.

 Article VII. MEETINGS

Board Meetings will follow Roberts Rules of Order.

The Annual Spring Board Meeting shall be open to all members of FGSA, and any interested parties approved in advance by the Executive Committee.

Monthly Board meetings are open to anyone affiliated with FGSA but NOT to the general public. Guests attending will be expected to sign the FGSA Code of Conduct upon arrival. Coaches meetings, Evaluations, Drafts, and any other meeting deemed necessary by the Board of Directors, are considered closed to the general public. This is to ensure the safety of all players in FGSA.

Voting Process: A topic is presented to the Board for discussion. Opinions for and against the topic are noted. A motion to vote on the item is requested and seconded. The motion is voted on by each member present. In the case of a tie, the President shall be the deciding vote.

Note: A quorum will consist of 7 voting members who must be present to vote on an item. Changes to by-laws must be submitted in writing to Board, prior to voting. There will be no proxy votes on changes to by-laws.

An Assistant Division Director may vote in the absence of Division Director on matters that affect their particular Division only. The Division Director needs to email the Secretary stating their Assistant will be their proxy for that meeting.

Article VIII. SCHEDULE

FGSA Softball is conducted year round. It includes Spring Season, Summer Travel teams, Fall Ball and Winter Training.

Teams are formed and schedules are created to best meet the needs of each Division and utilize available fields.

Article IX. COACHES

The Division Directors will nominate Head Coaches for each of their respective League teams, to be approved by the Board of Directors.

Head Coaches may be required to complete a written coaching application (based on large number of coaches) and may be required to enroll in an FGSA approved certification program. Development and implementation of Coach’s certification process will be the responsibility of the Director of Training & Development.

In the Junior and Senior Divisions, each Coach shall appoint one Assistant Coach to assist with skills session and draft. Any additional Assistant Coaches and Team Parents will be assigned after the draft or team selection has taken place.

All applicants for Coaches positions must complete and submit a CORI Request Form (see Addendum B).

Article X. RULES AND REGULATIONS

The Rules governing day-to-day operations of the FGSA are provided in the Home Rules and/or Operations Manual. Home Rules will be reviewed annually by the Rules Committee and any recommended changes will be submitted to and approved by the Board of Directors, prior to the start of the Season skills session. Approved Rules will be given to each Coach, before the start of season. The Rules Committee consists of the Umpire Coordinator as Chairman, President, as Co-chairman, and includes all Division Directors.

1.The Committee shall be responsible for determination of all playing Rules and regulations. They will handle all regular season play, procedures, guidelines, and team set up.

2.All Rules, regulations, and procedures etc. shall be documented by the Committee and presented to the Board of Directors for approval, before they are adopted.

3.Changes will be handled in the same manner. Rule changes after the start of the Season are discouraged and require unanimous approval by Rules Committee and Executive Board.

Article XI. LEAGUE FORMAT(S)/ AGE RANGES

The Program will consist of the following leagues with the age ranges specified.

Note: The Board of Directors reserves the right to review the league format and age ranges, prior to each playing season. Any exceptions to league formats or age ranges, must be approved prior to start of season by Board.

Spring League

(School Grade, as of January 1st of Playing Year)

Instructional: Pre-K & Kindergarten

Intermediate: Grades 1 & 2

Minors: Grades 3 & 4

Juniors: Grades 5 & 6

Seniors: Grades 7 & Up

*Players may request to “play-up or down” by a parent or a recommendation from a Divisional Director. This needs to be requested, in writing, to Division Director of higher Division and approved by FGSA Board.

Travel Teams- see attached Addendum A

 

Article XIII. LEAGUE FUNDS

1. A bank account with Bank of America, account # ___________________________ is used to process funds for FGSA, to include the Fury program.

Authorized signers on each account must be disclosed and will be approved by a vote of the Board of Directors during the January board meeting each year.

2. Fury Director must submit an itemized yearly budget to the Executive Committee by December 31st of each year for the upcoming season.

3. The Fury budget will be reviewed and submitted for approval by the FGSA Board. If a budget is not approved, all expenditures must be approved using the process outlined in paragraph 3 below until budget is approved.

4. Expenditures over $100 that are NOT included in an approved budget, must be approved in writing (email or expense request form) by the FGSA President, and one other voting member of the FGSA Board prior to purchase. Expenditures over $250 must be approved at a meeting of the Board of Directors, following the voting procedures described above in Section VII, Meetings.

5. ALL banking transactions for both FGSA and FURY bank accounts are to be reported monthly to the FGSA Treasurer.

6. A written report of all activity will be presented at all Board meetings.

The format will be determined by the FGSA Treasurer.

7. All FGSA fundraising activities (to include Travel Teams) must be approved in advance by the FGSA Board. A written plan must be submitted to the FGSA Executive Committee, prior to January 31st of the playing year. The plan should outline any anticipated events and details such as estimated expenditures, projected income, sponsors participating, etc. A follow up report should be provided to FGSA Board at the next meeting following completion of the event.

8. Any fundraising activities or events that are not included/approved in the initial plan must be submitted, discussed, and approved in advance by the FGSA Board.

Article XIV: MISCELLANEOUS

1. Anything not covered in these by-laws, or in the FGSA operating manual, will be resolved by a discussion and vote of the Board of Directors.

2. In the event of a stalemate of an official voting quorum, the FGSA President will cast the deciding vote (refer back to Article VII)

3. Certain decisions of a sensitive nature involving a Coach, parent, player, umpire or Board member, where time is of the essence to avoid disruption of play, can be voted on and approved by a unanimous vote of the FGSA Executive Committee.

 

Article XV: Addendum

Franklin FURY Travel Program Operating Manual

Revised February 2017

 

Franklin Fury Travel Program

Fury is a competitive summer softball program that is part of FGSA. It is designed to give girls under the age of 18 an opportunity to play fast pitch softball at a more competitive level than the in-town spring recreation league. Fury teams compete in both local and regional travel leagues as well regional softball tournaments. Fury teams are made up of players from ages 7 to 18. Age qualifications are based on the players’ age as of January 1st of the playing year. Teams are designated as 10U, 12U, 14U, 16u and 18u. Fury teams are registered and classified through American Softball Association (“ASA”) as “Class C” teams – which require that 100% of the girls reside in the Town of Franklin, with some exceptions as approved by the MA ASA commissioner.

 

Franklin Fury’s mission is to offer girls the opportunity to play at a competitive level consistent with their ability and skill set. Teams will be formed and will compete at three (3) levels (number of teams will be dependent on the number of girls that come out as well as skill sets):

A-Team – Focus of this team will be to play against Club-Level Teams. Regional travel and 5-7 tournaments should be expected.

B-Team(s) - Focus of these teams will be to play against Town-League teams and some Club-level teams. Minimal Regional travel and 3-6 tournaments should be expected.

C-Team(s) – Focus of these teams will be to play against Town only teams as well as player development. Local travel and 2-3 tournaments should be expected.

 

Tryouts/Evaluation Session – Fury

Try-outs will be held for all Fury Teams prior to the start of the Season. Players will be invited to join a team based on several factors to include, but not limited to: tryout results, prior Coaches’ evaluation, general knowledge of player’s ability and the number of spots available on each particular Team.

Player participation in at least one try-out is MANDATORY to be selected for an A or B level Travel team. Exceptions to this requirement must be submitted prior to tryouts and approved by the FGSA Board of Directors.

Players may request to “play up or down” by a parent or a recommendation from a Head Coach. This needs to be requested in writing to the Fury Director and approved by the FGSA Board.

Participation in the FGSA Spring league is required to be eligible for Fury. Exceptions are made on a case-by-case basis for girls playing in a competitive level sport that conflicts with spring season. Examples include, but are not limited to, AAU Basketball, Travel Soccer, and FHS teams. A written request must be sent to the Fury Director prior to end of registration period requesting a waiver and will be voted on by FGSA Board of Directors.

 

Team Selection Process

Teams will be determined following the tryout session(s). Each age level will have 2-3 non-coach evaluators that will assess skills during these sessions.

 

The “A” Team head coach will be chosen and then the team will be selected. Next, the ‘”B” Team head coach will be named and the team will be selected. Notifications will be sent out at the same time (not necessarily that day) to all players/ parents.

 

Team selection utilizes a combination of inputs to include the evaluation session and prior season’s coach input (if any). Head coaches will be selected after their application process is complete and then that new head coach, along with last year’s coaches for that division, Fury Director, Assistant Fury Director, and either FGSA President or VP will be involved in the team selection. The number of registered girls for tryouts will be one factor in determining how many competitive teams the Fury program can accommodate and support. Please note that every effort will be made, but not guaranteed, not to cut any players at the 14U and below level. At the 16u and 18u level, cuts may be necessary and should be expected depending on the number of participants. Girls from surrounding towns are only eligible to play Fury after teams have been formed and a clear need has been brought to the FGSA Board and must be approved by the MA ASA Commissioner and the FGSA Board of Directors. This is primarily intended for the 16u and 18u levels where the number of players may be limited. Franklin girls playing on a Club team are not eligible, per MA ASA rules, to play on two separate travel teams, i.e. Franklin Fury Travel. (Rules state they are not eligible to play in ASA sanctioned travel tournaments while playing on two travel teams. They may be eligible to “back fill” a position later in the season if the need arises for league play only, after exhausting the pool of Fury players. This will need to be brought to the FGSA Board for discussion/vote.

As noted, there are no guarantees of assignment. Each player will be notified by email and asked to respond to an invitation to join the team with 48 hours. Once Team Rosters are finalized, fees will be established and collected based on league play, tournament selection, training schedules and uniform/equipment requirements. Once a player has accepted a roster spot a non refundable deposit of $100 will be due within 1 week to guarantee that spot.

 

Fury Player/Parent Commitment

Each player is expected to be fully committed to training, developing an understanding of the game, and supporting teammates for the good of the team. With the understanding that over a 7 month period, conflicts will arise, Fury players are expected to be dedicated to their teams and make each practice and game a priority. Commitment is the most important component of earning the right to play. Time away during the June and July months is discouraged, as games will take place during this time. Also, time away during the Memorial Day weekend is discouraged due to potential tournament involvement. Parent volunteers during our Franklin hosted tournaments and throughout the season (ex. snack stand, field maintenance, scoreboard operation etc) is expected.

 

Summer Season – Town Leagues

Historically, Fury teams have participated in either the Hockomock or Twin Valley Leagues. League play is approximately 10 weeknight games followed by league playoffs over a 6 week period (Mid June to end of July). Fury teams have practiced on average once per week, typically on Sunday.

 

Tournaments

Fury teams typically play between 3-6 local weekend tournaments during the Summer Season (June/July) although some teams do elect to travel to other states for more competitive regional tournaments. This may vary by age group and team. Tournaments are selected by each head coach and need to be approved by the Fury Director and Assistant Fury Director.

 

Playing Time/Positions/Batting Line-Up

As a competitive team, Fury players are expected to earn the right to play through practice and development. Fury teams strive for a balance between equal playing time and designated positions. This will vary based on the following factors at the coach’s discretion:

• Player’s commitment to practicing and developing in a particular position

• Age group

• Level of competition

• Summer season – league games and playoff games

• Tournaments – pool play games and single elimination games

 

Coaches

Each year, coaches will submit an application and be selected and approved by the FGSA Board of Directors after player evaluations/skill session are complete. Factors in the decision process include ability to provide age appropriate training, past experience, past coaches’ evaluations, and commitment. Coaches’ evaluations are to be conducted annually by the Fury Director and utilized in the selection process. All coaches must meet same qualifications as an FGSA coach and submit a CORI Request Form, coach’s application and ASA Background Check; additional qualifications may be required as set forth by Director of Training & Development and approved by FGSA Board.

 

Code of Conduct

Fury players, parents, and coaches are all under a strict zero tolerance policy regarding the Code of Conduct as adopted by Franklin Girls Softball Association. Any coach, player, or spectator ejected from a game will face disciplinary action. Each incident will be reported to the Fury Director and FGSA President and reviewed by the FGSA Board of Directors as appropriate.

 

Cost Structure

Cost per player will include winter training, summer league play, and tournaments. Costs will vary by age bracket and team based on quantity of winter training, type of winter training and quantity of tournaments. Past teams have averaged between $250 and $550 per player. These costs may be supplemented with fundraising events. In addition, Fury uniforms are required for all players. The cost for new or replacement uniforms may be up to $125 and additional (optional) equipment (i.e. bat bags and helmets) may cost up to $100.

 

Fall Season

FGSA participates in a few different Fall Ball Leagues. These are usually a 5 game/5 week program playing games on Saturdays or Sundays. Although this is open to any FGSA player, participation tends to be Fury players. Depending on the quantity of girls participating, summer teams may stay intact or may be newly formed. Team selections will be approved by Fury Director, Assistant Fury Director and FGSA President or VP.

 

Winter Training

The winter training sessions are an integral component of the Fury program. These are essential to building the skills necessary to adequately compete in the league and tournaments. Each player is expected to attend winter training sessions as part of their commitment to the team. Fury teams practice indoors throughout January-March. The amount and content of the winter training may vary by each age group and team. Teams have generally practiced 2-4 times per month and have included batting instruction with professional instructors, open indoor field space, batting cages, etc.

 

ASA/USA SOFTBALL MA CLASSIFICATION METHOD:

Definitions:

ASA Spring Recreational Softball League: An organized league approved and sanctioned by the ASA/USA SOFTBALL MA for a minimum of one season, associated with a recognized community, and open to any interested youth. Some type of draft, draw or other acceptable method is to be utilized to ensure distribution of talent among the teams.

 

Club Softball Organization: An organization that holds tryouts, actively recruits players and does extensive traveling.

Surrounding City/ Town: A city/town that geographically touches the city/town a majority of players reside

 

Class A: Highly competitive with most players having consistent ability and pitchers being capable of controlling the game. Example of teams that WILL be classified as ‘A’ are: A travel team that meets the requirements of Class C or Class B, but wishes to play up in classification. A travel team that was classified as ‘B’ the previous season and won that year’s State Championship or other Championship Event (Regionals or Nationals) and was denied an appeal by the ASA/USA Softball MA JO Staff A travel team that was classified as ‘B’ the previous season and dominated play in that classification Teams classified as Class A may play unlimited Class A ASA sanctioned events and other softball organization’s events Teams classified as Class A CANNOT play in any Class B or Class C ASA sanctioned event

 

Class B: Examples of teams that MAY be classified as ‘B’ are: A team with all of its players playing within the same ASA registered Spring recreational league A team, not from a club organization, that is affiliated with an ASA registered Spring recreational league. A team made up from multiple cities/ towns with the majority (51% or more) residing from one city/town and the rest from surrounding towns providing no registered ASA Spring league exists in any of these cities/ towns. A travel team that was classified as ‘B’ the previous season and won that year’s State Championship or other Championship Event (Regionals or Nationals) and was granted an appeal by the ASA/USA Softball MA JO Staff. Two or three towns that combine to form one travel team because they do not have enough players in which to form their own travel team as long as they all belong to an ASA registered Spring recreational league. Teams classified as Class B may play unlimited Class B ASA sanctioned events Teams classified as Class B may play in three (3) Open ASA sanctioned events or other softball events. Should the team finish either first or second in one of these events; the team will be reclassified to Class A the following season. Should the team finish either first or second in two events, the team will be reclassified to Class A for the remainder of the current season. The team may petition the ASA/ USA SOFTBALL MA JO Staff to be allowed to play in a fourth Open ASA event. Teams classified as Class B CANNOT play in any Class C ASA sanctioned event.

 

Class C: The travel team has 100% of its players from one city/town, with some exceptions as determined by ASA/USA SOFTBALL MA Deputy JO Commissioner, that all play within the same ASA Spring Recreational Softball League and has completed the ASA/USA SOFTBALL MA JO Classification process. Exceptions may include but not limited to leagues formed from two or more towns because of not enough players in one town to make a league, towns with small populations, or towns without recreational leagues. The Class C Commissioner will meet with league representatives and the team to review their situation and make a classification. Teams classified as Class C may play unlimited Class B or Class C ASA sanctioned events. Class C teams may also play in the ASA/USA SOFTBALL MA Class B Championships. Teams classified as Class C cannot play in any Class A ASA sanctioned events.

CLASS B AND CLASS C TEAMS ARE BASED SOLELY ON THE CLASSIFICATION CRITERIA AS ESTABLISHED ABOVE. THE ASA/USA SOFTBALL MA DOES NOT TAKE ABILITY OR EXPERIENCE INTO ACCOUNT FOR CLASSIFICATIONS. THIS

MAKES IT TOO SUBJECTIVE AND EACH DEPUTY JO COMMISSIONER COULD HAVE HIS OR HER OWN OPINION AS TO ABILITY




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FRANKLIN GIRLS SOFTBALL ASSOCIATION

FGSA, PO Box 706
Franklin, Massachusetts 02038

Email Us: [email protected]
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