1. (A) In these Rules:
“Affiliated Association” means an Association accorded the status of an affiliated Association under the Rules of The FA.
“AGM” shall mean the annual general meeting held in accordance with the constitution of the Competition.
“Deposit” means a sum of money deposited with the Competition as part of the requirements of membership of the Competition.
“Club” means a Club for the time being in membership of the Competition and “Team” means a side from a Club especially where a Club provides more than one Team in a division in accordance with the Rules.
“Competition” means the Southern Amateur Veterans Football League.
“Competition Match” means any match played or to be played under the jurisdiction of the Competition.
“Secretary” means such person or persons appointed or elected to carry out the administration of the Competition.
“Contract Player” means any Player (other than a Player on a Scholarship) who is eligible to play under a written contract of employment with a Club.
“Fees Tariff” means a list of fees approved by the Clubs at a general meeting to be levied by the Management Committee for any matters for which fees are payable under the Rules.
“Fines Tariff” means a list of fines approved by the Clubs at a general meeting to be levied by the Management Committee for any breach of the Rules.
“Ground” means the ground on which the Club’s team(s) plays its Competition Matches.
“Management Committee” means in the case of a Competition which is an unincorporated association, the management committee elected to manage the running of the Competition and where the Competition is incorporated it means the Board of Directors appointed in accordance with the articles of association of that company.
“Match Officials” means the referee, the assistant referees and any fourth official appointed to a Competition Match.
“Non Contract Player” means any Player (other than a Player on a Scholarship) who is eligible to play for a Club but has not entered into a written contract of employment.
“Officer” means an individual who is appointed or elected to a position in a Club or Competition which requires that individual to make day to day decisions.
“Player” means any Contract Player, Non Contract Player or other Player who plays or who is eligible to play for a Club.
“Playing Season” means the period between the date on which the first competitive fixture in the Competition is played each year until the date on which the last competitive fixture in the Competition is played.
“Rules” means these rules under which the Competition is administered.
“Sanctioning Authority” means The Amateur Football Alliance Limited.
“Scholarship” means a Scholarship as set out in Rule C 3 (a) (i) of the Rules of The FA.
“Team Sheet” means a form provided by the Competition on which the names of the Players taking part in a Competition match are listed.
“The FA” means The Football Association Limited.
“WGS” means the Whole Game System and the procedures for the operation thereof as determined by The FA from time to time.
“written” or “in writing” means the representation or reproduction of words or symbols or other information in a visible form by any method or combination of methods, whether sent or supplied in electronic form or otherwise.
2. NOMENCLATURE AND CONSTITUTION
(A) The Competition will be known as “The Southern Amateur Veterans Football League” (or such other name as the Competition may adopt). The Clubs participating in the Competition must be members of the Competition. A Club, which ceases to exist, or which ceases to be entitled to play in the Competition for any reason whatsoever shall thereupon automatically cease to be a member of the Competition.
(B) This Competition shall consist of not more than 60 Clubs approved by the Sanctioning Authority.
(C) The administration of the Competition under these Rules will be carried out by the Competition acting (save where otherwise specifically mentioned herein) through the Management Committee in accordance with the rules, regulations and policies of The FA.
(D) All Clubs shall adhere to the Rules. Every Club shall be deemed, as a member of the Competition to have accepted the Rules and to have agreed to abide by the decisions of the Management Committee in relation thereto, subject to the provisions of Rule 7.
(E) The Rules are taken from the Standard Code of Rules (the “Standard Code”) determined by The FA from time to time. In the event of any omissions from the Standard Code then the requirements of the Standard Code shall be deemed to apply to the Competition.
(F) All Clubs must be affiliated to an Affiliated Association and their names and particulars shall be returned annually by the appointed date. Failure to comply with this Rule will result in a fine in accordance with the Fines Tariff, under Schedule A number 1.
This Competition shall apply annually for sanction to the Sanctioning Authority and the constituent Teams of Clubs may be grouped in divisions, each not exceeding 14 in number.
(G) Inclusivity and Non-discrimination:
(i) The Competition and each Club must be committed to promoting inclusivity and to eliminating all forms of discrimination and should abide and adhere to The FA Equality Policy and any legislative requirements (to include those contained in the Equality Act 2010).
(ii) This Competition and each Club must make every effort to promote equality by treating people fairly and with respect, by recognising that inequalities may exist, by taking steps to address them and by providing access and opportunities for all members of the community, irrespective of age, gender, gender reassignment, sexual orientation, marital status, race, nationality, ethnic origin, colour, religion or belief, ability or disability or otherwise.
(iii) Any alleged breach of the Equality Act 2010 legislation must be referred to the appropriate Sanctioning Authority for investigation.
(H) Clubs must comply with the provisions of any initiatives of the FA, which are adopted by the Competition including, but not limited to, Charter Standard and RESPECT programmes.
(I) Clubs shall not enter any of their Teams playing in the Competition in any other competitions (with the exception of FA and County FA Competitions) except with the written consent of the Management Committee.
(J) At the Annual General Meeting or a Special General Meeting called for the purpose, a majority of the delegates present shall have power to decide or adjust the constitution
3. CLUB NAMe
(A) Any Club wishing to change its name must obtain permission from the Sanctioning Authority and from the Management Committee.
4. ENTRY FEE, SUBSCRIPTION, DEPOSIt
(A) Applications by Clubs for admission to the Competition or the entry of an additional team(s) from the same Club must be made in writing to the Secretary by 31st January in any year and must be accompanied by the Entry Fee as set out in the Fees Tariffs, which shall be returned in the event of non-election.
At the discretion of a majority of the accredited voting members present applications, of which due notice has been given, may be received at the Annual General Meeting or a Special General Meeting.
(B) The Annual Subscription shall be as set out in the Schedule of Fees Payments & Fines.
(C) In the event of any issue concerning the membership of any Club with the Competition the Management Committee may require a Deposit to be paid (in accordance with the Fees Tariff) by or on behalf of the Club on such terms and for such period as it may in its entire discretion think fit. Failure to comply with this Rule will result in a fine in accordance with the Fines Tariff, under Schedule A number 8.
(D) A Club shall not participate in this Competition until the entry fee; annual subscription and deposit (if required) have been paid. (2 A, B, C).
(E) Clubs must advise annually to the Secretary in writing by 1st August of its Sanctioning Authority affiliation number for the forthcoming Playing Season. Clubs must advise the Secretary in writing, or on the prescribed form, of details of its headquarters, its Officers and any other information required by the Competition. Failure to comply with this Rule will result in a fine in accordance with the Fines Tariff, under Schedule A number 2 A, B, C and 4.
5. THE MANAGEMENT COMMITTEe
(A) The Management Committee shall comprise the Officers of the Competition and five ordinary members who shall all be elected at the Annual General Meeting.
(B) Retiring Officers shall be eligible to become candidates for re-election without nomination. All other candidates for election as Officers of the Competition or members of the Management Committee shall be nominated to the Secretary in writing, signed by the secretaries of two Member Clubs, not later than 31st May in each year. Names of the candidates for election shall be circulated with the notice of the Annual General Meeting. In the event of there being no nomination in accordance with the foregoing for any office; nominations may be received at the Annual General Meeting.
(C) The Management Committee shall meet as and when required, save that no more than three calendar months shall pass between each meeting.
On receiving a requisition signed by two-thirds (2/3) of the members of the Management Committee the Secretary shall convene a meeting of the Management Committee.
(D) Except where otherwise mentioned all communications shall be addressed to the Secretary who shall conduct the correspondence of the Competition and keep a record of its proceedings.
(E) All communications received from Clubs must be conducted through their Officers and sent to the Secretary.
(F) All Officers of the Competition are required to attend 50% of the Management Committee Meetings held between the dates of two consecutive AGMs. Officers who do not fulfil this requirement may not, at the discretion of the Management Committee, be nominated at the subsequent AGM for re-election to the management Committee and/or be requested to resign from the Management Committee.
(G) The Competition shall be governed in accordance with the Rules and Regulations of the Football Association by a Management Committee comprised of the Officers and other members, including at least representatives of 3 member clubs, who shall be elected at the AGM. All participants shall abide by the Football Association Regulations for Safeguarding Children and Vulnerable Adults as determined by the Football Association from time to time.
Failure to comply with this Rule will result in a fine in accordance with the Fines Tariff, under Schedule A number 3.
6. POWERS OF MANAGEMENT
(A) The Management Committee may appoint sub-committees and delegate such of their powers, as they deem necessary. The decisions of all sub-committees shall be reported to the Management Committee for ratification. The Management Committee shall have power to deal only with matters within the Competition and not for any matters of misconduct that are under the jurisdiction of The FA or Affiliated Association.
(B) Subject to the permission of the Sanctioning Authority having been obtained, the Management Committee may order a match or matches to be played each Season, the proceeds to be devoted to the funds of the Competition and, if necessary, may call upon each Club (including any club which may have withdrawn during the Season) to contribute equally such sums as may be necessary to meet any deficiency at the end of the Season.
(C) Each member of the Management Committee shall have the right to attend and vote at all Management Committee meetings and have one vote thereat, but no member shall be allowed to vote on any matters directly appertaining to such member or to the Club so represented or where there may be a conflict of interest. (This shall also apply to the procedure of any sub-committee).
In the event of the voting being equal on any matter, the Chairman of the Management Committee shall have a second or casting vote.
(D) The Management Committee shall have powers to apply, act upon and enforce these Rules and shall also have jurisdiction over all matters affecting the Competition. Any action by the Competition must be taken within 28 days of the Competition being notified.
With the exception of Rules 6(I), 8(H), and 9, for all alleged breaches of a Rule the Management Committee shall issue a formal written charge to the Club concerned. The Club charged shall be given 7 days from the date of notification of the charge to reply. In such reply a Club may:
(i) Accept the charge and submit in writing a case of mitigation for consideration by the Management Committee on the papers; or
(ii) Accept the charge and notify that it wishes to put its case of mitigation at a hearing before the Management Committee; or
(iii) Deny the charge and submit in writing supporting evidence for consideration by the Management Committee on the papers; or
(iv) Deny the charge and notify that it wishes to put its case of mitigation at a hearing before the Management Committee
Where the Club charged fails to respond within 7 days, the Management Committee shall determine the charge in such manner and upon such evidence as it considers appropriate.
Where required, hearings shall take place as soon as reasonably practicable following receipt of the reply of the Club as more fully set out above.
Having considered the reply of the Club (whether in writing or at a hearing), the Management Committee shall make its decision and, in the event that the charge is accepted or proven, decide on the appropriate penalty (with reference to the Fines Tariff where applicable).
The maximum fine permitted for any breach of a Rule is £250 and, when setting any fine, the Management Committee must ensure that the penalty is proportional to the offence, taking into account any mitigating circumstances.
All breaches of the Laws of the Game, or the Rules and Regulations of The FA shall be dealt with in accordance with FA Rules by the appropriate Association.
(E) All decisions of the Management Committee shall be binding subject to the right of appeal in accordance with Rule 7.
Decisions of the Management Committee must be notified in writing to those concerned within 7 days.
(F) More than 50% of its members shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business by the Management Committee or any sub-committee thereof.
(G) The Management Committee, as it may deem necessary, shall have power to fill in an acting capacity, any vacancies that may occur amongst their number.
(H) A Club must comply with an order or instruction of the Management Committee and must attend to the business and/or the correspondence of the Competition to the satisfaction of the Management Committee. Failure to comply with this Rule will result in a fine in accordance with the Fines Tariff, under Schedule A number 3.
(I) Subject to a Club’s right of appeal in accordance with Rule 7 below, all fines and charges must be paid within 14 days of the date of notification of the decision. Any Club failing to do so will be fined in accordance with the Fines Tariff. Further failure to pay the fine including the additional fine within a further 14 days will result in fixtures being withdrawn until such time as the outstanding fines are paid.
(J) A member of the Management Committee appointed by the Competition to attend a meeting or Competition Match may have any reasonable expenses incurred refunded by the Competition.
(K) The Management Committee shall have the power to fill any vacancy that may occur in the membership of the Competition between the AGM or SGM called to decide the constitution and the commencement of the Playing Season.
(L) The business of the Competition as determined by the Management Committee. It may be transacted by electronic mail, telephone conference call meeting or facsimile.
(M) The Management Committee shall call a Council Meeting comprising the members of the Management Committee and no more than two representatives from each Club to discuss the general working of the League whenever they deem it necessary and shall do so at least once a year, prior to the AGM. At such a Council Meeting, there shall not be any formal voting, nor will minutes be taken. Clubs failing to attend may be liable to a fine, under Schedule A number 4.
(N) When, due to the urgent nature of the business, it is not practicable to call a special meeting of a sub-committee, a decision may be taken following consultation with senior members of the Management Committee by e-mail or conference telephone call if necessary.
(O) Where any club appoints at the start or during the season one member to complete the duties of the Club Secretary, Match Secretary and Referees Secretary, that club shall also provide the details of two emergencies contact names and their contact details, which are also to be shown within the League Handbook.
7. PROTESTS, CLAIMS, COMPLAINTS, APPEAL
(i) All questions of eligibility, qualification of Players or interpretations of the Rules shall be referred to the Management Committee or a sub-committee duly appointed by the Management Committee.
(ii) Objections relevant to the dimensions of the pitch, goals, flag posts or other facilities of the venue will not be entertained by the Management Committee unless a protest is lodged with the referee before the commencement of the Competition Match.
(B) Except in cases where the Management Committee decide that there are special circumstances, protests and complaints (which must contain full particulars of the grounds upon which they are founded) must be lodged with the Secretary within 7 days (excluding Sundays) of the Competition Match or occurrence to which they refer. A protest or complaint shall not be withdrawn except by permission of the Management Committee. A member of the Management Committee who is a member of any Club involved shall not be present (except as a witness or representative of his Club) when such protest or complaint is being determined.
(C) No protest of whatever kind shall be considered by the Management Committee, unless the complaining Club shall have deposited with the Secretary a sum in accordance with the Fees Tariff. This may be forfeited in whole or in part in the event of the complaining or protesting Club losing its case. The Competition shall have power to order the defaulting Club or the Club making a losing or frivolous protest or complaint to pay the expenses of the inquiry or to order that the costs to be shared by the parties.
(D) All parties to a protest or complaint must receive a copy of the submission and must be afforded an opportunity to make a statement at least 7 days prior to the protest or complaint being heard.
(i) All parties must have received 14 days’ notice of the hearing should they be instructed to attend.
(ii) Should a Club elect to state its case in person then it should indicate such when forwarding the written response.
(E) The Management Committee shall also have power to compel any party to the protest to pay such expenses as the Management Committee shall direct.
(F) Any appeal against a decision of the Management Committee must be lodged with the Sanctioning Authority within 14 days of the posting of the written notification of the decision causing the appeal, accompanied by a fee (as set out in the Fees Tariff), which may be forfeited in the event of the appeal not being upheld. A copy of the appeal must also be sent to the Secretary. The procedure for the appeal shall be determined by the Sanctioning Authority, in such respect the Sanctioning Authority may (but is not obliged to):
(i) Invite submissions by the parties involved;
(ii) Convene a hearing to hear the appeal;
(iii) Permit new evidence; or
(iv) Impose deadlines as are appropriate
Any appeal shall not involve a rehearing of the evidence considered by the Management Committee.
(G) No appeal can be lodged against a decision taken at an AGM or SGM unless this is on the ground of unconstitutional conduct.
(H) All protests, claims or complaints relating to these Rules shall be heard and determined by the Management Committee, or a sub-committee duly appointed by the Management Committee. The Clubs or Players protesting, appealing, claiming or complaining must send a copy of such protest, appeal, claim or complaint and deposit a fee (as set out in the Fees Tariff) under Schedule A number 8. which shall be forfeited in the event of the protest, appeal, claim or complaint not being upheld, and the party not succeeding may, in addition, be ordered to pay the costs at the direction of the Management Committee.
All such protests claims complaints and appeals must be received in writing by the Secretary within fourteen days of the event or decision causing any of these to be submitted.
8. ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING (AGM)
(A) The AGM shall be held not later than 30th June in each year. At this meeting the following business shall be transacted provided that at least 10 members are present and entitled to vote:
(i) To receive and confirm the minutes of the preceding AGM.
(ii) To receive and adopt the annual report, balance sheet and statement of accounts.
(iii) Election of Clubs to fill vacancies.
(iv) Constitution of the Competition for the ensuing Season.
(v) Election of Officers of the Competition and the Management Committee members.
(vi) Appointment of auditors.
(vii) Alteration of Rules, if any (see Rule 14).
(viii) Fix the date for the commencement of the Playing Season and kick off times applicable to the Competition.
(ix) Fix the date for the end of the Playing Season.
(x) Other business of which due notice shall have been given and accepted as being relevant to an AGM.
(B) A copy of the duly audited/verified balance sheet, statement of accounts and agenda shall be forwarded to each Club at least 14 days prior to the meeting, together with any proposed Rule changes.
(C) A signed copy of the duly audited/verified balance sheet and statement of accounts shall be sent to the Sanctioning Authority within 14 days of its adoption by the AGM.
(D) Each Club shall be empowered to send two delegates to an AGM. Each Club shall be entitled to one vote only. 14 days’ notice shall be given of any AGM.
(E) Clubs who have withdrawn their membership of the Competition during the Playing Season being concluded or who are not continuing membership shall be entitled to attend but shall vote only on matters relating to the Season being concluded. This provision will not apply to Clubs expelled in accordance with Rule 12.
(F) All voting shall be conducted by a show of hands unless a ballot is demanded by at least 50% of the delegates qualified to vote or the Chairman so decides.
(G) No individual shall be entitled to vote on behalf of more than one Member Club.
(H) Any continuing Club must be represented at the AGM. Failure to comply with this rule will result in a fine in accordance with the Fines Tariff, under Schedule A number 8.
(I) Officers of the Competition and Management Committee members shall be entitled to attend and vote at an Annual General Meeting.
9. SPECIAL GENERAL MEETINGS (SGM)
9. Upon receiving a requisition signed by two-thirds (2/3) of the Clubs in membership the Secretary shall call an SGM. The Management Committee may call an SGM at any time.
At least fourteen (14) days’ notice shall be given of a meeting under this Rule, together with an agenda of the business to be transacted at such meeting.
Each Club shall be empowered to send two delegates to all SGMs. Each Club shall be entitled to one vote only, as will members of the Management Committee.
Any continuing member club must be represented at a Special General Meeting. Any Club failing to be represented at a SGM shall be fined in accordance with the Schedule of fines. Failure to comply with this rule will result in a fine in accordance with the Fines Tariff, under Schedule A number 4.
Officers of the Competition and Management Committee members shall be entitled to attend and vote at all SGMs.
At this meeting business shall be transacted provided that at least 10 delegates and 5 members of the League Management Committee are present and entitled to vote. The Management Committee shall comprise the Officers of the Competition and five ordinary members who shall all be elected at the Annual General Meeting.
10. AGREEMENT TO BE SIGNEd
10. Each Club shall complete and sign the following agreement, which shall be deposited with the Competition together with the application for membership for the coming Season, or upon indicating that the Club intends to compete. “We, (A) (name) [ ] of (address) [ ] (Chairman)/(Director)and (B) (name) [ ] of (address) [ ] (Secretary)/(Director)of [ ] Football Club (Limited) have been provided with a copy of the Rules and Regulations of the [ ] Competition and do hereby agree for and on behalf of the said Club, if elected or accepted into membership, to conform to those Rules and Regulations and to accept, abide by and implement the decisions of the Management Committee of the Competition, subject to the right of appeal in accordance with Rule 7.”
The agreement shall be signed by:
[i] Where a Club is an unincorporated association, the Club chairman and secretary; or
[ii] Where a Club is an incorporated entity, two directors of the Club. Any alteration of the chairman and /or secretary of the Club on the above agreement must be notified to the Amateur Football Alliance the County Football Association(s) to which the Club is affiliated and to the Secretary.
Failure to comply with this rule will result in a fine in accordance with the Fines Tariff, under Schedule A number 1.
11. CONTINUATION OF MEMBERSHIP, WITHDRAWAL OF A CLUB
(C) Notwithstanding the powers of the Management Committee pursuant to Rule 6(I), in the event of a Club failing to discharge all its financial obligations to the Competition in excess of £50, the Management Committee shall be empowered to refer the debt under The FA Football Debt Recovery provisions.
12. EXCLUSION OF CLUBS, TEAMS. MISCONDUCT OF CLUBS, OFFICERS, PLAYERS, MANAGEMENT COMMITTEE
(A) At the Annual General Meeting or Special General Meeting called for the purpose in accordance with the provisions of Rule 9, notice of motion having been duly circulated on the agenda by direction of the Management Committee, the accredited delegates present shall have the power to:
(i) remove a member of the Management Committee from office; (ii) exclude any Club or Team from membership, both of which must be supported by more than two thirds (2/3) of those present and voting. Voting on this point shall be conducted by ballot. A member of the Management Committee or Club, which is the subject of the vote being taken, shall be excluded from voting.
The procedure to be followed by the Management Committee or duly appointed sub-committee in pursuing Rule 6 (D), Rule 18 (B)(iv) and or Rule 12 (C) 12 (D).
(a) The Management Committee has the ability to invite any Club(s) and/or their representative(s) in writing to attend before the Management Committee or appointed Sub-Committee with at least 14 days clear notice of the time, date and venue.
(b) Full details of the offence shall be stated in the letter.
(c) The Clubs and/or their representatives shall be given the opportunity to address the Committee, produce documents and call witnesses if the individual so desires, and may be assisted by not more than one other person to support the individual or speak on his behalf in so doing.
(d) After the Clubs and/or their representatives has been heard by the Committee and the case has been considered, a two thirds majority of the members of the Committee present and voting in favour is required for the recommendation that the player, official or member of a Club is to be suspended or expelled.
(e) If the Committee votes to recommend the suspension or expulsion of a Member Club, player, official or member of a Club, an SGM must be called within 28 days of the Committee Meeting. A two-thirds majority of the members present and voting is required to order the suspension or expulsion of player, official or member of a Club.
(f) If the required majority of votes for suspension or expulsion have not been obtained under (iv) or (v) above, the matter is closed and may not be reopened in the same season.
(g) Within 14 days of the posting of written notification of any decision of the Management Committee, appointed sub-committee or the Competition, a Club, Official or Player against whom action is taken, may appeal against such decision by lodging particulars in duplicate with the Secretary of the AFA (procedure to be followed is set out in the AFA handbook), including a fee of (see Schedule of Fees, Payments and Fines) for adjudication of an AFA Board of Appeal. The grounds of appeal shall be in accordance with FA Rules. The AFA Board of Appeal may order the appeal fee to be forfeited and shall decide by whom the costs of the appeal shall be borne. The decision of the AFA Board of Appeal is final and binding on all parties concerned.
(A) The following agreement shall be signed on behalf of the winners of the cup or trophy: -
“We (A) (name) and (B) (name), the Chairman and Secretary of [ ] FC (Limited), members of and representing the Club, having been declared winners of cup or trophy, and it having been delivered to us by the Competition, do hereby on behalf of the Club jointly and severally agree to return the cup or trophy to the Competition Secretary on or before 1ST February If the cup or trophy is lost or damaged whilst under our care we agree to refund to the Competition the amount of its current value or the cost of its thorough repair.”
Failure to comply will result in a fine in accordance with the Schedule of fines, under Schedule A number 10a.
(B) At the close of each Competition awards may/shall be made to the winners and runners-up if the funds of the Competition permit.