The governing document of the South Florida Flag Football League (SFFFL)
Approved May 7, 2018
In complying with the mission of our parent organization, the National Gay Flag Football League (NGFFL), the SFFFL is established as a not for profit, charitable organization promoting competitive co-ed recreational football. All skill levels are encouraged to participate, play and volunteer. Our league is committed to hosting more than 16 teams, with over 250 participants, including a loyal and growing group of spectators and supporters and that reaches and impacts the community through our educational, outreach, volunteer and community service activities. Through flag football, we foster an environment where LGBT people can:
The vision of the South Florida Flag Football League (hereafter referred to as SFFFL) is to proudly foster community, comradery, and inclusivity by providing opportunities to engage in competition through flag football.
SUPPORTING AGENDA for VISION
Promote the game of competitive contact coed flag football throughout the LGBT communities in the state of Florida. The SFFFL embraces the notion of community by building a spirit of teamwork, camaraderie, and volunteerism to enrich the lives of all individuals involved in our league. Our organization will:
It is a fundamental principle of the South Florida Flag Football League that all social and athletic activities are to be inclusive in nature and that no individual shall be excluded from participating based on sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, gender expression, race, religion, nationality, ethnic origin, political beliefs, athletic ability, physical challenge, or HIV status.
The South Florida Flag Football League promotes gender inclusion by allowing players to self identify gender. The gender that a player identifies with is considered to be that players gender.
SFFFL ORGANIZING ARTICLES
1. ORGANIZATION. These bylaws set out the rules of the South Florida Flag Football League
("SFFFL") --a non-profit membership organization with voting members.
In these rules, unless the context otherwise requires:
3. AIMS AND OBJECTIVES
The aims and objectives of SFFFL are:
3.1 Educate and encourage community through amateur flag football. To be a nonprofit organization dedicated to changing communities, in the state of Florida, through amateur contact coed flag football. To present amateur contact coed flag football as a means to educate, change attitudes, promote self-discovery, and build esteem within the LGBT community, and in the communities in which LGBTQ people work, live, and play.
3.2 Affiliate broadly. Support, ally, and partner with other entities in our local communities, region and nation seeking to achieve similar aims.
3.3 Promote local leagues to advance education. Foster formation of contact coed flag football leagues throughout the state of Florida where they do not exist and support those organizations’ growth and success as the primary method of pursuing the Aim of Section 3.1 above. Provide programs and resources to help member organizations recruit, educate and retain players to achieve broader impact in educating, changing attitudes, and promoting self-discovery.
3.4 Promote national and international competition. Achieve the above aims by planning, promoting and carrying out and / or supporting amateur contact coed flag football tournaments and other competition opportunities.
4. MEMBERSHIP IN THE SFFFL
4.1 Eligibility for Membership. Any resident of Florida, 18+ in age, whom signs a waiver of liability plus is interested and/or engaged in contact co-ed amateur flag football may apply to become a member of the SFFFL. Interested members must pay dues, and must sign both a waiver of liability and a code of conduct. Members should be interested in pursuing the aims and objectives of both the SFFFL and the NGFFL.
4.2 Expectations of Membership. All members are expected to adhere to and support the SFFFL mission, vision, and non-discrimination policy. All members are expected to serve, first and foremost, the needs of the LGBT community.
4.3. Expectation of Member-Organization Maturation. The SFFFL is expected to be a competitive league that matches the intent of our parent organization, the NGFFL. The goal of the SFFFL, as outlined in our mission and vision, is to grow every year to continue to provide safe and supportive environments for our players, fans, and sponsors.
4.4 Dues for League Play. Members of the SFFFL are required to pay dues for league play before the draft party. Registration for the spring season will open in January and in August for the fall season. Members must pay dues at the time of their electronic registration.
4.5 Other Fees. The Board may elect to charge additional fees to Members, as necessary and as approved by a majority vote of the Board. Any fees that would represent a 25 percent or more increase over what the SFFFL has charged Members in dues the previous calendar year must be approved by the Members by a majority vote.
4.6 Volunteer Hours. Volunteer hours can be rewarded for participation at fundraisers, assisting the
league with vital responsibilities, bringing in sponsorship to the league, helping expand the league, garnering media attention for our league, obtaining public relations/marketing/advertising for the league, getting the league into large community events and other actions approved by the board of the SFFFL.
4.7 Code of Conduct. In addition to the rules noted in Section 9 of the NFGFFL by laws, the SFFFL has adopted a code of conduct that must be signed by every member. It is the documentation used to handle player discipline.
4.8 Eligibility for Travel Teams- Eligibility for travel teams will be determined on a case by case basis by the board of directors, advisory board, and captains from each travel team. It is the goal of the SFFFL to be able to send as many travel teams as possible to tournaments, as well as have as many teams as possible participate in local tournaments.
4.9 Non-selection to League Play Team or Tournament Teams. The SFFFL is open to all athletes in the state of Florida. Captains of travel teams and regular league teams reserve the right to not select players to be on their team. Players with previous conduct issues or other forms of unsportsmanlike conduct may not be selected to play on a league play team or a tournament team. In the event of this occurrence, they will be refunded their due money.
4.10 Temporary Suspension. The Board reserves the right to call a vote to temporarily suspend a Member from participating in a league-sponsored events and NGFFL sponsored events such as the Gay Bowl national championship tournament if that Member is found by the Board to be in conflict with the Mission and Vision, or Aims and Objectives, of the NGFFL. Temporary suspension requires a three-fourths majority vote of the Board.
4.11 Dismissal. The Board reserves the right to call a vote to permanently dismiss a Member if that Member is in violation of the Mission and Vision, or Aims and Objectives, of the SFFFL & NGFFL. Dismissal requires the vote of the entire executive committee, and a three-fourths majority vote of the board.
4.12 Eligibility for Playoffs. In order to be eligible to play in league playoffs, a player must play in 50% of the games. Players that were not selected, via draft, are not eligible to play on a league play team until they are drafted in a supplemental draft. Players may not be drafted until they have paid their league dues. Substitutions or pickup players are barred in league play.
5. MAINTAINING MEMBERSHIP STANDING WITH THE NGFFL
5.1 Good Standing. The SFFFL will submit NGFFL membership dues by March 1 of every year to remain in good standing with our parent organization, the NGFFL.
5.2 Allowable Timetable for Maturation. By December 31 of every calendar year, the board of the SFFFL will provide the NGFFL with bylaws that have been passed by a voting process and that demonstrate that a league is in place, representative of the local LGBTQIA community and led by elected leaders.
5.3 Member Organization Designated Point of Contact. The Commissioner of the SFFFL is allocated as the single Designated Point of Contact for the SFFFL to the NGFFL in all Member Organization Voting Matters (see Section 11.1) for the length of his term. The Commissioner must delegate the rest of the Executive Board as alternate contacts. The Commissioner may also appoint other board members as NGFFL Point of Contacts.
5.4 Member Organization Additional Points of Contact. Per section 4.5, the SFFFL will submit the names of the Treasurer, Director of League Operations and Secretary as Additional Points of Contact, which the NGFFL and will gladly ask that they are copied on all official communications related to voting matters.
6.1 Liability of Members. The liability of a Member to contribute towards the payment of the debts and liabilities of SFFFL or the cost, charges and expenses of dissolving SFFFL, will be limited to the amount of the league dues for that calendar year. Members will not be responsible for any outstanding debt of the SFFFL beyond this membership fee.
6.2 Liability of the SFFFL. SFFFL is not responsible for any obligations/liabilities of its members, sponsors, or parent organizations.
7.1 Budget Standards. Board Members of the SFFFL are required to submit budgets for consideration and approval by the following dates:
Spring League – January 31
Fall League- May 31
of each Budget Year. The Treasurer must reject any budget that does not meet that standard. The board will vote on budgets approved by the Treasurer. The budget shall pass with a majority vote from the board of directors.
7.2 Annual Operating Budget. At the beginning of each calendar year, the Treasurer shall prepare an operating budget for review and approval by the Board that incorporates the budgets submitted by board members. The Board will approve the operating budget and all budgets by a two-thirds majority vote. The Board will publish the final operating budget and make it available to the NGFFL, other NGFFL Member Organizations, and SFFFL members in the program for the Florida Sunshine Cup or at any time it is requested in writing.
7.3 Monthly Treasurer’s Reports. The Treasurer will produce Treasurer’s Reports to be reviewed and approved at each regularly scheduled monthly Board Meeting. Treasurer’s Reports will be based on best practices for nonprofit organizations of the SFFFL’s size and will include basic elements such as revenue, expenses, and cash on hand, and actual revenue and expenses compared to budget. Approval of the Treasurer’s Report requires a two-thirds majority vote of the Board. This report will be shared with members of the SFFFL at the monthly board meeting.
7.4 Cash Management. At all times, no less than two members of the Board must have full visibility into and access to the SFFFL’s bank account(s) and other assets. That includes bank-account usernames and passwords. The Treasurer will use these records to compile the monthly treasurer report. The records will be verified monthly by the Commissioner, Secretary, and a member of the league advisory board. These three auditors will not have direct access to these assets.
8. GOVERNANCE AND THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS
8.1 Composition. The SFFFL will be governed by its Board of Directors, accountable for
all aspects of SFFFL operations and full compliance with the NGFFL, our parent organization.
The Board shall consist of the positions indicated in Appendix A of this document, titled Board Members and Responsibilities. Any individual that is or has been a Member in Good Standing of the SFFFL, or who is not part of a NGFFL Member Organization Not in Good Standing, is eligible to serve on the Board of Directors.
8.2 Election of Commissioner. On December 15, of every second year after 2019, the Commissioner of the SFFFL shall be elected by majority vote of its Members, via secret ballot conducted by the Secretary, a member of the Board of Advisors, and a SFFFL member. The Board shall have collected and announced to the Members the candidates for Commissioner by December 1. The candidate that receives the most votes shall win. In the event of a tied vote,a runoff shall be held the following week. The election will be facilitated and completed, and the results announced on the same day has such vote occured. The term of the current Commissioner will end on January 15, at 10 am; of the new year and the new Commissioner’s term will begin on January 15, at 10 am; of that same day and new year.
8.3 Election of Board Members. On every calendar year, on December 15th, the Board of Directors will facilitate an election via secret ballot to fill open Director positions. The board will announce the results of these elections no later than 48 hours after the election. New directors will assume office on January 15th, of the following year.
8.4 Term. Board Members can serve up to two, two year terms, consecutively or non-consecutively. After the end of two terms, by an individual, the board will decide to hold an election if deemed necessary. To the exclusion of the person whose term is being expired. Approximately one-half of the board and one
half of the Executive Board will be up for reelection every year.
8.5 Resignation. Any Board Member may resign in writing to the Board at any time. Any Board Member who is proven to have fallen out of good standing with the SFFFL, or is incapable of serving, shall be deemed to have resigned as a Director.
8.6 Resignation of the Commissioner. In the event the commissioner resigns before their term expires, the remaining members of the executive board (Treasurer, Secretary, and Director of League Operations) are to vote an active board member into the role of interim commissioner. The executive board members may chose to put their name forward as a candidate for interim commissioner. The interim commissioner will serve as commissioner until the Board of Directors holds a formal election for the position.
8.7 Removal. Any Board Member may be removed at any time, two-thirds of the Board Member then in office, excluding the one being considered for removal, choose to vote and set a motion to remove such board member. A Board Member may also be removed by a majority plus one of active players in the league
8.8 Replacement. The Board will conduct an election following prior voting standards within 30 days to replace a resigned or removed Board Member.
9. OFFICERS (BOARD MEMBERS)
9.1 Positions and Roles. Board member (also known as Director or Officers) and other
official positions and their roles are described in Appendix A. Appendix A will be published
after the completion of every Annual Reorganization Meeting where these positions are defined
by the Members of the SFFFL.
10.1 Annual Meeting. The SFFFL shall hold an Annual Meeting to reorganize the league
to meet the league needs. The initial meeting will take place in January. Each
subsequent meeting will take place in December of the calendar year. The meeting will take
place in the form of an open town hall, conference style. The purpose of the meeting shall be to inform Members of the state of the SFFFL, the organization’s financial position, opportunities and plans for the calendar year, and to solicit input on those topics. The Board shall make every effort to give Members 30 days notice of the Annual Meeting.
10.2 Quorum for Annual Meeting. The Quorum for the Annual Meeting shall be three quarters of the SFFFL Board and 10 Members of the organization.
10.3 Board Meetings. The Board shall meet, at minimum, monthly via a conference call or in person. The commissioner and secretary will work to schedule these board meetings.
10.4 Notice of Board Meetings. Shall be held on the first Monday or Tuesday of each month. The secretary will make members aware of board meetings. Any league member or non-member is welcome to attend board meetings.
10.5 Quorum for Board Meetings. The Quorum for Board Meetings shall be 51% of Board Members present. A Quorum must be present in order to hold a vote.
10.6 Chairperson and Agenda. The Commissioner serves as Chairperson of Board Meetings and sets the agenda. The secretary is responsible for keeping minutes and keeping the discussion on track at the board meetings.
10.7 Chairperson’s Absence. In the absence of the Chairperson of Board Meetings, the Chairperson shall be the league secretary.
10.8 Minutes. The Board shall record and publish thorough and detailed Minutes of its regularly scheduled and other Board meetings, and the Annual Meeting, keeping Members and the NGFFL fully informed of our decisions. The Board shall appoint a Board Member to take those Minutes at every meeting, typically the secretary. The Board Member who takes the Minutes shall circulate the Minutes for approval within one week following the Board Meeting. Any Board Member may request a correction to facts as stated in the draft minutes. But, to ensure complete transparency, the Board shall not alter, or delete content from the Minutes, nor purposefully exclude discussions nor content from the Minutes. Once approved by the Directors by a simple majority vote, the Board shall publish the final Minutes each month via appropriate SFFFL channels for Members reference.
11.1 Member Voting Matters. As a nonprofit organization with voting members, Members
shall vote on Voting Matters that are mission-critical to the SFFFL. After the passage of these
by-laws, Member Matters include, but are not limited to:
▪ Directors to serve on the Board
▪ Induction into the SFFFL Hall of Fame
▪ Disputes brought by Members against Board decisions
▪ Other business as requested by the Board
11.2 Process for Member-Organization Voting. On Member Organizations Voting matters, the Board shall extend to Member Organizations the opportunity to vote via secret ballot, and facilitate the voting process accordingly. When voting in person, this process may be done manually as the board deems it appropriate. When not in person, that may be an electronic process using online survey instruments or equivalent tools.
11.3 Member Organization Voting and Conflicts of Interest. On Member Organization Voting Matters in which an individual Member, Organization’s league, Gay Bowl national-championship team(s), Gay Bowl national championship team player(s), or a Gay Bowl national championship team player’s business concerns or other vested personal interests might directly benefit from the outcome of that Member Organization’s vote, that Member Organization’s Designated Point of Contact shall recuse himself or herself from voting. In situations in which a Member Organization does not believe a conflict of interest exists and seeks to vote anyway, the Board shall vote by simple majority to suspend the Member Organization’s vote on that topic.
11.4 Voting Procedure for Motions. Most motions will be conducted via electronic means or in person at board meetings. The results of these motions will be published by the Secretary before the first of each month. Board members are given 24 hours to vote on any motion. A non-vote does not count towards the majority required to pass the motion. A vote in absentia does not count towards the majority needed to pass a motion. The executives must vote last in any motion with the Commissioner only voting if it is needed to approve or defeat a measure.
11.5 Board Voting and Conflicts of Interest. On Board Voting Matters in which an individual Board have a business concerns or other vested personal interests including personal relationships with an interested party that might directly benefit from the outcome of that Board Member Director’s vote, the Commissioner will recuse the Board Member from voting. In situations in which the Commissioner has a conflict, another Executive Board Member will force the Commissioner to recuse themselves. If a Board Member insists that a conflict does not exist, the Board shall vote – not including the Board Member in question – by simple majority to suspend or restore the Board Member’s vote on that topic.
12. NOTICES. Wherein these rules notices are required to be sent to Members, they shall be deemed to be duly served if delivered by hand or sent electronically. In the case of notices of meetings required by these rules, the accidental omission to provide a notice to any Member, or the non-receipt of such notice, shall not prejudice or invalidate the proceedings or decisions of such meetings.
13. AMENDMENTS, ADDITIONS TO THESE BYLAWS. These bylaws may be modified,
altered or added to by a resolution of the Board. Upon the passing of the modifications, alterations, or amendment by a two-thirds vote of the Board, the proposed changes shall go before the Members for a vote. For the modifications, alterations or amendments to take effect, they must secure a majority vote of approval by the Members. The rules will be deemed to have been amended accordingly and all Members shall be bound by the amended rules.
14. INSPECTION OF DOCUMENTS. The Board shall ensure that the Minutes to all Board Meetings and the Annual meeting, as well as operating budgets, reconciled budgets and financial reports, are publicly available for Members of the SFFFL and the Board of the NGFFL for review.
15. APPEALS. Any dispute between a Member and the Board may become a Board of Advisors Voting Matter. The dispute becomes a Board of Advisors Voting Matter upon official dispute in writing submitted to the Board of Advisors for a vote. The official dispute must be submitted in writing to the Commissioner. The Board shall facilitate a vote among this group and the dispute shall be settled by a majority vote.
16. DISSOLUTION. The SFFFL shall be considered dissolved with a majority approval of the
Board. In such an event, all properties and possessions of SFFFL are to be sold, and all proceeds
are to be used to pay all outstanding debts of the SFFFL. All remaining assets including any endowments shall be disbursed to charitable organizations at the discretion of the board.
APPENDIX A: BOARD MEMBERS & RESPONSIBILITIES
Commissioner: Dominic Grasso
*Executive Board Member
Treasurer: William Howell
*Executive Board Member
Secretary: Andre Jensen
*Executive Board Member
Director of League Operations: Ace Buting
*Executive Board Member
Director of Technology & Communications:
Director of Women’s Division
Director of League Sponsorship & Events
Director of Player Outreach & Retention
Director of Social Media