2022 Spring Sofcourt Meeting Minutes


Spring 2022 Softcourt Meeting Minutes
Wednesday, February 23, 2022

The Women’s Softcourt League of Birmingham held the Spring Meeting on Wednesday, February 23, 2022, at 9:30am at Old Overton Club. All Club Representatives were present or represented except Trussville Racquet Club. All Level Coordinators were present. All Officers were present. There were 26 Members in attendance including Officers.

President, Janet Simonetti, welcomed everyone to the meeting and called the meeting to order. Laura Mikos, Secretary, called roll. Laura asked for a motion to approve the minutes from the Fall Meeting as posted on the Website. Motion made to accept Minutes by Janet Simonetti, seconded by Licky Randolph, and approved.

Treasurer, Melody Debardelaben, presented the Financial Report. We began the Fall 2021 Season with a cash balance of $11,732.37. Total Expenses were $9,094.43 -- $563.05 Website renewal/upgrades, $465.19 printing, $416.19 Fall Meeting, $3,000.00 LETT Donation and $4,650.00 spring prizes (gift cards). Spring Fees collected were $7,840.00. Total cash balance beginning the Spring 2022 Season is $10,477.94. A motion to approve the Treasurer’s report was made, seconded, and approved.
Janet Simonetti, President, announced the winners and runners-up for the Fall Season 2022. A tennis pouch and key chain were awarded to the winners and a 3-pack of tennis socks and key chain were awarded to the runner-up teams. Janet announced move down requests and noted that a whole team was moved from the 3.5 level to the 3.0 level. Match Day Helper is available on the website and 2 things have been added. One, Level Coordinators contact information has been updated for Captains to reference and second, instructions on how to use your strength roster has been added. Janet also went over an update to the rule of “electronic devices” clarifying that they must be on silent mode and can be used for tracking exercise. Per Rule Book, any electronic device disturbance on court will result in loss of game.

Vice President, Cindy Speake, reported that we have 8 levels, 112 teams enrolled, with 10 divisions including 2 divisions for the 2.5 level and 3.0 level for the Spring Season. The schedules have been entered and are final. The season will begin on Monday, March 7, 2022.

• Cindy reminded Club Representatives that strength rosters MUST be turned in by midnight March 6, 2022 (see Rule Book: TEAMS; Section 5 Strength Roster; Part a). Failure to comply will result in 1St set of each court being forfeited for each match until Strength Roster is entered. Kelly clarified that Strength Roster must be turned in by midnight before your level’s first match (even if you have a bye).
• Cindy asks that the Club Reps remind all Team Captains to provide their Strength Roster to the opposing team when lineups are exchanged. All captains should double check that all players are playing at the correct level based on the Strength Roster before play begins. If Strength Roster is not provided, Captains can access it through the website by phone.
• Cindy also asks that Captains be reminded to sign the Score Sheet after the match is finished. Do not sign if they do not agree with the Score Sheet.

Past President, Kelly Miles discussed website login guidelines and the importance of using your login for the appropriate functions when you are acting as a Captain versus officer, level coordinator or club representative. The website is divided into 5 different login levels, each with varying degrees of accessibility. This is done to maintain an element of security and make sure any changes are done by the consent and authorization of the Executive Board. Kelly reminded the members that every player has its own player ID and can login to the website. Players can reach out to their Level Coordinator’s for the universal password.
• Level Coordinators:
o please pay attention to players playing out of strength roster. Currently, the Rule Book does not define any consequences for this. Level Coordinators can run a weekly report through the Softcourt Website to check that no player is playing outside of strength roster (playing up or down more than one level from their assigned strength roster position).
• Club Representatives
o be sure to stress to Captains the importance of adhering to Strength Roster guidelines.
The following new business was discussed:
• Website Updates:
o Janet discussed that Players cannot be placed on a team at a lower level then the last season they played. This prevents players from being placed on teams below their level and requires a Level Coordinator or Officer to roster players approved to move down.
o Group email options for Club Reps and Team Captains is now available for any club, team captain, level coordinator or officer.
o eForms for Move Down Request and Complaints of Unsportsmanlike Behavior are available on the website home page under “more” then “forms.”
o The home page menu now includes tabs for login, enter score, rule book and current schedule. Please note the original menu remains as well with all previous tabs.
o Janet asks that Captains and players be encouraged to use the website.

• Rules and Policies - Proposed Changes
 Kelly calls a revote of revising the Softcourt match format. In February 2021, Softcourt League polled every team at each level in the League to determine if we should change the singles and doubles format. The proposed change: To play 2 courts of singles and 4 courts of doubles. The majority vote at each level would determine what that level would do. The proposed change did not pass on any level in the League. The voting options proposed for today’s meeting are one, to accept the vote from February 2021 as it stands (playing 4 singles courts and 4 doubles courts) or two, repeat the vote by level.
o Vote - #1: 17 in Favor, #2: 8 in Favor
o We will keep the format of 4 singles courts and 4 doubles courts
o Ramona Cunningham states that this format proposal has dominated the discussion of our meetings and asks to table the discussion for 3 years. Betty Austin motions to not vote on changing the format for a period of 3 years. Janet Simonetti seconds the motion, and it is put to a vote.
o Vote – In Favor: 16, Not in Favor: 10
o Due to the WSL Rules and Policies requirement that “all changes to major rules or policies requires a 2/3 majority vote of the Executive Board present” this Vote did not pass and is open for discussion and revote at our Fall 2022 meeting.
 Janet opens discussion for vote on Refreshment Policy for 2022 Spring Season. Option #1 is to adopt the current COVID policy, which is discretionary by Club, and make it a permanent policy change or Option #2 to return to policy as stated in the WSL Rules and Policies, which is “Host Team must provide new balls, refreshments and have 4 courts available…”.
o Vote - #1: 8 in Favor, #2: 17 in Favor
o The Refreshment Policy is no longer discretionary, and we will adhere to current Rules and Procedures standards going forward. If for any reason a Club cannot provide food, the captain must notify the guest team ahead of time. Cindy states that Mountain Brook Club will not be providing food this season due to construction of their facility and asks that Club Representatives notify their Captains.
 Janet opens discussion of consequences for failure to adhere to Strength Roster. Voting Option #1 to take away sets/games on the offending court resulting in a default on the team that failed to adhere to their strength roster. Option #2 subject the Team Captain to board review according to the policy for Unsportsmanlike Conduct, which states 1st offense put on file, 2nd offense captain is notified, 3rd offense Captain is banned from next season of play. Option #3 keep the policy the same and have no consequences for playing out of strength roster guidelines.
o Treasa Harrison makes a motion to do away with strength rosters. Janet opens the floor to discussion and the motion is put to a vote.
o Vote – In Favor: 5, Not in Favor: 20
o Strength Rosters will stand and Janet motions for a vote on consequences for failure to adhere to Strength Roster.
o Vote - #1: 23 in Favor, #2: 0 in Favor, #3: 0 in Favor
o Team that fails to adhere to their Strength Roster will receive a “Default” and a loss of any games/sets won on the offending court.
o Janet asks members to remind Captains to let Level Coordinators know in advance of match a situation where they will need to play out of strength roster for approval.
• Annemarie Wilson requests nominations for scholarship recipients at the middle school and high school level. Applications are due August 14, 2022. She also announced that the Susan Briggs Tournament will be held August 22-25 with a rainout date of August 26, 2022.
• Janet announces our Fall Softcourt meeting will be held at 9:30am on Thursday, September 1, 2022.
The meeting was adjourned at 10:50am.

The following email from February 20, 2022, prefaced the meeting:
Hello All,
Just a reminder: Softcourt Club Rep meeting at Old Overton Club, Wednesday, February 23 at 9:30.

Before the meeting:
• Please review the minutes from the Fall 2021 meeting by going to the website, womenssoftcourtleague.com /More /News /Fall 2021 Softcourt Meeting Minutes. We will vote to approve the minutes of the Fall 2021 meeting.
• Please determine your club’s COVID restrictions regarding refreshments. We will vote on the softcourt league refreshment policy for Spring 2022.
• Please ascertain your club’s interest in revising the match format to two courts of singles and four courts of doubles. We will vote on polling the teams as was done last year. Note: The proposed change did not pass on any level in last year’s poll.
• We will also have a vote regarding the penalty for match play not in accordance with the strength roster procedures.
• Please, check the posted winners of the Fall 2021 season and plan to pick up prizes for your club winners. (To find season winners go to the website, womenssoftcourtleague.com /More /Past Winners /Fall2021)
• If you/your club has anything to add to the agenda, please let me know.
While you are using the website, check out the improvements such as access to the Rule Book, Login, Current Schedules, and Score Entry on the Home page. We hope to increase traffic on the website and have less need for hard copies.

I look forward to a GREAT season of tennis!

Janet Simonetti
2022 WSL President

Respectfully submitted,
Laura Mikos, Secretary