By-laws


1: PLAYER ELIGIBILITY
2: TEAM ELIGIBILITY
3: FEES
4: POINT STRUCTURE
5: LEAGUE GAMES
6: LEAGUE STANDINGS
7: PLAYOFF FORMAT AND SCHEDULE
8: CANCELLATIONS
9: DEFAULTS
10: REPORTING OF GAME SHEETS
11: SUBSTITUTES
12: GAME SHEETS
13: REFEREES
14: STANDING COMMITTEES
15: AD-HOC COMMITTEES
16: TEAM REPS
17: TOURNAMENT REPS
18: DISCIPLINE
19: PROTESTS AND GRIEVANCES
20: APPEALS
21: AGENDA
22: ATTENDANCE AT GAARA MEETINGS
23: SKILL DIVISIONS
24: GAARA LEAGUE PLAY
25: EVALUATION OF PLAYERS AND TEAMS
26: GAARA / TEAM CONTRACT


BY-LAW 1: PLAYER ELIGIBILITY

1.1 In accordance with Ringette Ontario (RO) guidelines, players in the Open division must be 18 years of age and over, with the player's age being determined by December 31st of the current playing season. Consequently, exceptions to this age limit may be made in the following manner only:

(a) with the request filed with GAARA in writing by the September general meeting; and

(b) with the approval of GAARA and the Adult Development Coordinator for the Eastern Region Ringette Association.

1.2 Players can register with RO or GAARA at any time of the year, but cannot play in sanctioned events unless they register with RO by January 8th.

1.3 An eligible player is one:

(a) that meets the age requirements;

(b) that is not under suspension;

(c) that is a member of GAARA in good standing;

(d) that is registered on the RO Team Registration Form of a team playing in GAARA or is registered on a GAARA “Spares” RO Team Registration Form. Players may not be included on more than one RO Team Registration Form in GAARA each season; and

(e) that has signed and submitted a “Player Evaluation and Registration Form” to GAARA if required.

1.4 All players new to GAARA or who have not played in the GAARA league play for the previous two playing seasons must complete a Player Evaluation and Registration Form which is to be submitted to the GAARA Vice President at vp@gaara.ca along with the pre-registration submission.

1.5 Players must wear the equipment deemed mandatory in the Ringette Canada Rule Book.

1.6 All players are considered members of the team on whose RO Team Registration Form their name appears for purposes of GAARA league play.

1.7 In exceptional circumstances and if not addressed in a timely manner under the provisions of by-law #25, the executive reserves the right to reassign players to different skill divisions if the player’s skills are deemed inappropriate for the level in which they are registered.

 BY-LAW 2: TEAM ELIGIBILITY

2.1 All teams must indicate their intention to play in one of the Skill Divisions as outlined in by-law #23 by the pre-registration and ice scheduling date. Teams indicating interest after this date will be accepted at the discretion of the Scheduler. Teams must submit a Team Pre-Registration Form along with Player Evaluation and Registration Forms where applicable at the pre-registration and ice scheduling date. The executive reserves the right to re-assign teams to different Skill Divisions if the Team Pre-Registration Form and Player Evaluation and Registration Forms warrant such action.

2.2 All teams must register with RO and obtain a RO Team Registration Form in one of three ways:

(a) register with RO through GAARA;

(b) register with RO through another association; or

(c) register with RO as an independent team.

2.3 All teams registering with RO through an association other than GAARA must provide GAARA with a hard copy of their RO Team Registration Form by November 15th. Any team which does not receive their TRF by November 15th must notify the GAARA Registrar as to when it will be submitted.

2.4 All teams, including those registering with RO through an association other than GAARA, must provide GAARA with a copy of any RO Information Change Forms promptly.

2.5 All teams registering with RO through GAARA must provide the GAARA registrar with all necessary information as requested in the GAARA registration package on or before the September GAARA registration date. Failure to do so will result in a team fine as set out in the GAARA Team Contract.

2.6 All teams must provide a list of home ice times for league play within seven (7) days of the City of Ottawa releasing their ice allocation packages. For all teams new to GAARA or for any returning team who is changing their hours of home ice time, the Executive must approve the ice time before the team will be allowed to play in GAARA. The Executive reserves the right to refuse any home ice time that is deemed unusable given the timing that is outside of the regular GAARA season or cannot be scheduled due to unavailability of referees or other intractable league scheduling conflicts. The Executive will return any unusable home ice times to teams before the City of Ottawa deadline for ice cancellations.

2.7 The Executive reserves the right to limit the number of teams registering in any or all divisions should a lack of available resources warrant such action. The decision as to which teams will be allowed to register will be at the sole discretion of the Executive. Grounds for limiting teams from any or all divisions will be considered in the following priority order:

(a) availability of resources (i.e. referees);

(b) ice time availability;

(c) date of registration;

(d) receipt of payment;

(e) history with GAARA; and

(f) number of teams within a particular division or within all divisions.

BY-LAW 3: FEES

3.1 The association fee structure will be established annually by the Executive prior to the September registration date. As these fees include monies allocated for payment of officials, they may vary according to division and location of home ice in order to adequately cover the cost of officials.

3.2 Any GAARA registered team owing any amount of money to GAARA at the AGM shall be considered "not in good standing". All members of such team shall not be permitted to register on that or any other GAARA or Eastern Region Ringette Association team until the amount is paid in full.

BY-LAW 4: POINT STRUCTURE

4.1 The point structure is:

(a) 2 points for a win;

(b) 1 point for a tie; and

(c) 0 points for a loss.

BY-LAW 5: LEAGUE GAMES

5.1 Following the release of the league schedule in September (for the first half of the season) and December (for the second half), teams will have a period of 7 days to make changes. Should a team wish to change a  game, that team is solely responsible for finding another hour of ice time which must be mutually agreed upon with their opponent and approved by the GAARA Referee in Chief to ensure referee assignment is possible. Once approved notify the Scheduler, League Statistician, and the GAARA Referee in Chief of the details of the change to be made.

5.2 Given that in some divisions the playoff schedule is dependent upon standings at the end of the regular season (and is therefore not determined with much advance notice), no changes to the playoff schedule will be allowed.

5.3 A shot clock will be used in all A, B and C division games.

5.4 The first period of A games shall be seventeen (17) minutes and in all other divisions, it shall be fifteen (15) minutes. At the end of the first period the referees shall determine the time to be put on the clock to start the second period by the following formula: Ice times remaining (e.g. 20 min.) divide by 2 (e.g. 10 min.) then add 3 (e.g. total is 13 min.). The length of the second period shall never exceed the length of the first period.

5.5 After the ice becomes available, games shall start following a two (2) minute warm-up. If a team is not ready after the warm-up, a two (2) minute delay of game penalty is awarded (see Default by-law #9).

5.6 Once a game has begun, the game will count and the score will stand as is when the game is finished or is called by the referees.

5.7 The home team must provide a scorekeeper, timekeeper and prepared score sheet.

5.8 In divisions where applicable, the home team is responsible for ensuring that the shot clock is present for the game and for providing a trained person to operate the shot clock. Failure to do so will result in a team fine as set out in the Team Contract.

BY-LAW 6: LEAGUE STANDINGS

6.1 In the event of a tie in the standings, RO tie-breaking rules will be applied in order to determine team placement for playoffs.

BY-LAW 7: PLAYOFF FORMAT AND SCHEDULE

7.1 The GAARA Scheduler will use the number of hours of ice required for playoffs in each division from within the ice allotment provided by each team for the season.

7.2 Tie-breaking rules for playoff games:

(a) For a round-robin format, teams will be assigned points according to by-law #4.1. When two or more teams have an equal number of points after completion of the games, the ranking of tied teams will be determined using the RO Tie Breaking Rules.

(b) For a Knock-out format, each game must have a winner. Ties will be broken as follows:

i) the team that SCORES THE FIRST GOAL IN THE SECOND PERIOD will determine the winner of the game.

ii) in the event that there was no goal scored in the second period, then the team that SCORED THE LAST GOAL IN THE FIRST PERIOD will determine the winner of the game.

iii) in the event that the game was 0-0, the game will be stopped with 3 minutes remaining in the game and a shootout will take place. IT WILL BE A "SUDDEN DEATH" SHOOTOUT (the first occurrence whereby both teams have taken the same number of shots yet one team has scored more goals).

iv) in the event that the game is still tied after the selected five shooters, the coach will select the next five shooters and a second sudden death shootout will take place.

v) prior to the game, each team will have indicated on the game sheet the shooting order of the entire team.

(c) any other playoff format is to use the RO tie-breaking rules unless stated otherwise by the Scheduler.

(d) the method of determining a winner in the event of a tie during a playoff Championship Final game will be at the discretion of the Executive based on relevant factors including ice availability. The method will be announced to the teams prior to the beginning of the Championship Final games.

7.3 During league playoff games, the home team is responsible for providing a scorekeeper, timekeeper and prepared score sheet. In divisions where applicable, the home team will also be responsible for providing a shot clock operator. The League shall administer the finals by providing scorekeepers, timekeepers, shot clock operators and prepared score sheets. The Home team for the final playoff game will be determined by the final ranking placement of the regular season standings.

BY-LAW 8: CANCELLATIONS

8.1 a cancellation of a game for any reason other than those listed below will result in a default (see by-law #9). Cancellations of games may occur for the following reasons only:

(a) inclement weather conditions;

(b) loss of ice;

(c) no referees; and

(d) participation of a team in a tournament.

8.2 The cancelling team is responsible for notifying the opposing team, Scheduler, Statistician and Referee in Chief of any cancelled games. In the case of game cancellations due to inclement weather, the cancelling team must advise the Referee in Chief and opposing team by telephone a minimum of five (5) hours prior to the scheduled time of the game. If the Referee in Chief cannot be contacted in person, another member of the GAARA Executive must be notified within the 5-hour time limit.

8.3 If a team must cancel a game in order to participate in a tournament, then a minimum of three (3) weeks’ notice is required.

8.4 The cancelling team is responsible for rescheduling the cancelled game and for notifying the Scheduler of the rescheduling details. GAARA is in no way responsible for rescheduling games except as a result of no referees for games played in Ontario (see by-law #8.1(c)). In this instance, GAARA will assume the responsibility of rescheduling.

8.5 The cancelling team must offer two (2) hours of ice time as options for rescheduling the game which does not conflict with regularly scheduled games. If the cancelling team cannot offer two viable options, the cancelling team will default the game. If the other team rejects both offers, a default will be given to the rejecting team. If the two teams “Mutually” agree to cancel a game due to bad weather, the game report will reflect a 0-0 score and both teams will receive 1 point.

8.6 The cancelling team is responsible for immediately advising the Scheduler, Statistician and Referee-in-Chief and for providing these three people with the details regarding rescheduling.

8.7 The cancelling team who fails to notify the Scheduler, Statistician and Referee-in-Chief of a cancelled game shall forfeit any points gained should that game be rescheduled.

8.8 Cancelled games may not be rescheduled for the period following the distribution of the playoff schedule.

BY-LAW 9: DEFAULTS

9.1 A team shall automatically default a game under any one of the following conditions:

(a) failure to have a cancelled game rescheduled as outlined in by-law #8;

(b) being unable to ice six (6) skaters and a goalie or (7) skaters without a goalie;

(c) calling off a scheduled game in advance without making all reasonable efforts to play the game including exhausting all resources to obtain spare players;

(d) refusal to play another team.

Additionally, a default will be declared against a team for any one of the following conditions:

(e) participation of an ineligible player;

(f) playing with less than six (6) members of its regular team;

(g) not being ready to play five (5) minutes after the scheduled game time;

(h) as the home team, fails to provide a timekeeper/scorekeeper and shot clock operator or scratch players from the score sheet and have those players perform the duties;

Teams are encouraged to play games if possible and, with that intent, no financial sanctions will be enforced against teams who default a game under conditions (e) through (h) in 9.1 if the other team is notified in advance of the circumstances and agrees to proceed with the game. The home team shall complete and submit the score sheet in the normal fashion and make note of the default, including the reason, on the game sheet.

9.2 Teams who default three (3) games under any of the conditions outlined in 9.1 shall be brought before the Disciplinary Committee who shall determine what further action, if any, is necessary.

9.3 Teams who default games for conditions (a) and (b) in 9.1 shall be assessed a twenty (20) dollar fine for the first offence and fines increasing by five (5) dollar increments for any subsequent offences.

9.4 Teams who default games under condition (c) in 9.1 shall be assessed a fifty ($50) dollar fine for each game so defaulted.

9.5 Teams who default games for condition (d) in 9.1 shall have the following sanctions applied:

(a) the head coach will receive a three-game suspension;

(b) if the defaulted game is a playoff game, the team forfeits any right to play in league finals;

(c) a fifty (50) dollar fine will be assessed for the first offence; and

(d) for a second offence, the team will be ejected from the league and no refunds will be given.

9.6 In defaulted games, the score shall be recorded as 4-0 (as per Ringette Ontario and Ringette Canada) with the non-offending team awarded two (2) points for a win in the standings.

9.7 GAARA will not reschedule defaulted games.

BY-LAW 10: REPORTING OF GAME SHEETS

10.1 An electronic copy of the white game sheet must be emailed to the GAARA Statistician within 48 hours of the game being played.

10.2 The game sheet must be delivered to the GAARA Statistician within one (1) month of the game being played.

10.3 The home team is responsible for sending the game sheet (electronic and physical copy) to the statistician.

10.4 Failure to comply with these regulations may result in the offending team having to forfeit any points gained as a result of playing the game. This will be at the discretion of the GAARA executive.

10.5 Failure to follow the above procedure will result in a team fine as set out in the Team Contract.

BY-LAW 11: SUBSTITUTES

NOTE: As per by-law 23.1, Skill Divisions are defined as

NOTE: As per by-law 23.2, Sub Divisions are defined as

11.1 During REGULAR league games, teams may use substitute players with the following restrictions:

(a) A team is permitted to use substitute players (skaters and goalies):

i) But cannot exceed its number of registered players on their TRF;

ii) The substitute player must be an eligible player (see By-law #1.3);

iii) Substitute skaters (S) and goalies (SG) MUST be designated as such on the game sheet

(b) Substitute Skaters:

i) Can be used to bring a team’s total complement up to a maximum of twelve (12) skaters;

ii) Can be used up to a maximum of four (4) per game;

iii) The same skater can spare a maximum of five (5) times per team in the regular season;

iv) Spare skaters may be used from the same subdivision in which they are playing or lower:

EXAMPLE: an A team may use a spare skater from any A or lower skill division team (BB, B, CC, C, Dev);

?EXCEPTION: Dev teams may use spare skaters to bring their team’s total complement up to a maximum of thirteen (13) skaters;

EXCEPTION: Dev teams may use the same skater a maximum of eleven (11) times per team in the regular season;

(c) Substitute Goalies:

i) Can be used when a team’s regular goalie is not available, regardless of the number of team members present;

ii) The same goalie can spare unlimited times per team in the regular season;

iii) Spare goalies may be used from the same skill division in which they are playing or lower:

EXAMPLE: a BB team may use a spare goalie from any BB or lower skill division team (B, CC, C, Dev);

11.2 During PLAYOFF league games, teams may use substitute players with the following restrictions:

(a) A team is permitted to use substitute players (skaters and goalies) ((Same as set out in 11.1 (a) (for regular league games)):

(b) Substitute Skaters:

i) Can be used to bring a team’s total complement up to a maximum of twelve (12) skaters;

ii) Can be used up to a maximum of four (4) per game;

iii) The same skater can spare a maximum of two (2) times per team in playoffs;

iv) Spare skaters may be used from a lower sub or skill division:

EXAMPLE: an A team may use a spare skater from any BB or lower skill division team (BB, B, CC, C, Dev);

(c) Substitute Goalies:

i) Can be used when a team’s regular goalie is not available, regardless of the number of team members present;

ii) The same goalie can spare unlimited times per team in playoffs;

iii) Spare goalies may be used from the same subdivision in which they are playing or lower:

EXAMPLE: an A team may use a spare goalie from any A or lower skill division team (BB, B, CC, C, Dev);

BY-LAW 12: GAME SHEETS

12.1 Each team is responsible for ensuring that the game sheet is filled in completely and accurately. It must include: game number, date, division, team names, jersey colours, location and start time. (see by-law #11.4.)

12.2 Teams are to print the full names and sweater numbers of all the players listed on the Team Registration Form (TRF) on the game sheet. The labels must follow this order: Jersey number, Player's last name, Player's first name. All players must be listed numerically by their last name.

Example: (G) 3- Dow, Jane

                    5- Stewart, Ann

                   10- Ferguson, Susan

12.3 Players who are not present must then be scratched off the game sheet with a single line through their name.

12.4 Substitute players must be indicated on the game sheet with the letter "S" beside their name. [example: S - Jane Dow].

12.5 Goalies are to be indicated on the game sheet with the letter “G” inside brackets [example: (G) 3- Dow, Jane].

12.6 Failure to follow the above procedure will result in a team fine as set out in the Team Contract.

BY-LAW 13: REFEREES

13.1 The referee-in-chief shall be responsible for ensuring that there are two (2) referees assigned to each league game played in Ontario. For games played in Quebec, GAARA is not responsible for the scheduling of referees.

13.2 In situations where only one (1) referee shows up to a game, it is up to the referee present to determine if the game shall be played. The referee has the right to refuse to referee the game alone in which case GAARA will be responsible for rescheduling the game if it is in Ontario and covering the costs of ice time and referees. Should the referee decide to go ahead with the game, the game must be played under those circumstances.

BY-LAW 14: STANDING COMMITTEES

14.1 Tournament Committee:

(a) Shall consist of the Tournament Director and such other members of GAARA and its teams as is deemed necessary; and

(b) Shall, under the direction of the Tournament Director, run the annual SilverSpoon Tournament.

14.2 Grievance/Disciplinary Committee:

(a) Shall consist of a panel of three (3) persons selected by the Vice President on behalf of the Executive, from an established list, to consider any particular case. If a conflict of interest occurs, shall be selected by the President;

(b) Shall be chaired by the Vice President of GAARA. If a conflict of interest occurs shall be chaired by the President; and

(c) Shall be responsible for decisions regarding game protests, grievances, and disciplinary actions.

BY-LAW 15: AD-HOC COMMITTEES

15.1 The executive may appoint ad-hoc committees as necessary to plan, implement, and execute specific tasks or projects as directed by the executive.

BY-LAW 16: TEAM REPS

16.1 Each team playing in GAARA shall select from amongst themselves a GAARA team rep.

16.2 The team rep:

(a) shall ensure that her team is represented at all GAARA General Meetings;

(b) is encouraged to attend all GAARA Executive meetings as an observer;

(c) shall review the GAARA Constitution and By-Laws with all members of her team before the first league game;

(d) shall keep the members of her team informed in regards to the minutes of GAARA meetings and team standings;

(e) shall notify all members of her team as to the date and location of all General Meetings and encourage them to attend;

(f) shall ensure all required documentation regarding team registration has been passed on to the Registrar prior to the league deadline;

(g) shall bring areas of concern to the attention of her Executive Division rep;

(h) shall ensure that an ice time schedule has been given to the Scheduler by the set deadline; and

(i) shall sign a contract with GAARA at the start of each year and agree to the conditions of the contract (see by-law #26).

BY-LAW 17: TOURNAMENT REPS

17.1 Each team playing in GAARA, regardless of whether or not they play in the SilverSpoon Tournament, is responsible to support the activities of the Tournament Committee as appointed by the Executive.

17.2 Each team representative:

(a) shall ensure her team is aware of the activities of the Tournament Committee; and

(b) shall delegate tasks as necessary for the running of the SilverSpoon Tournament to the members of her team.

BY-LAW 18: DISCIPLINE

18.1.1 Misconduct Penalties shall be served as stated in the Ringette Canada Rule Book.

18.1.2 Match Penalties

The occurrence of a match penalty will automatically be subject to a minimum of three (3) game suspension (GAARA - 1 game and RO - 2 games) and a League Judicial Hearing to be held within 10 days (wherein GAARA may add additional games to the suspension if deemed appropriate).

All game suspensions are to be served in the next one (1), two (2), three (3), or more consecutive number of games (not including any Exhibition Games) depending upon the number of suspended games. Please note that if there is a Tournament that the player's team is registered in, which occurs during the period of her suspension, the player will have to serve her suspension during the Tournament until whatever the length of games her suspension is for is complete.

18.2.1 Any player, coach, or team staff incurring:

(a) three (3) unsportsmanlike;

(b) two (2) misconduct penalties or two (2) major penalties or a combination of any two (2) thereof; during a single season shall be automatically suspended for a minimum of one (1) GAARA league game including playoffs (not appealable).

18.2.2 Table 1. Suspension Guidelines

Player/Team Official assessed a Match Penalty for:

ActionSuspension
(# of games)
Hair pulling
Facemasking
Head Butting
3
3
3
Spearing
Butt-ending
Stick swinging
4
4
4
Kicking 4
Deliberate attempt to injure 4
Fighting:
instigating
participating (including those in addition to the original two participants)
4
2
Abuse of an official:
excessive verbal
physical:
-minimal (e.g., touch/brush)
-moderate (e.g., push)
-excessive (e.g., punch/attempt to punch/push causing fall)
2

3
5
7

18.3 In addition, suspensions not served in full shall be deemed to carry across seasons. Individuals participating in regularly scheduled games while under suspension shall be suspended indefinitely by the League, and subject to penalties as stipulated in the G & T section of the current RO Operating Manual.

18.4 All disciplinary decisions may be appealed except for those covered in 18.1 and 18.2 above.

18.5 Discipline Process
Both teams shall be responsible to notify the Discipline Committee Chair, referred to herein as "the Chair", within 24 hours of the completion of any game in which a Misconduct or Match Penalty has been assessed, a player has been ejected from that game for excessive penalties, or a team has accumulated 30 minutes or more in penalties. In situations in which game suspensions are applicable, the Chair shall, in turn, notify the contact person of the offending team's next opponent (as indicated on the Master schedule), and the G & T and ADP Coordinators of the Region(s) in which the suspended individual(s) is/are registered.

18.6 Appeal Process
An appeal of a suspension resulting from a Match Penalty assessment shall only be entertained in situations in which said suspension, as levied by the Discipline Committee, exceeds the maximun number of games as outlined in Table 1.

In order to appeal a decision of the Discipline Committee, the individual involved must send a "notice of appeal" to the Vice President within seven (7) days of being informed of the duration of the suspension. This notice, which shall provide a complete explanation of the grounds on which the appeal is based, must be accompanied by a cheque (made payable to "GAARA") or an e-transfer in the amount of $25.00. Should the appeal be successful, this amount shall be refunded to the appellant. Upon receipt of this notice, the Vice President shall, in consultation with the other members of the Committee and within seven (7) days of receipt of the notice, respond by granting or denying the appeal. If granted, the suspended individual shall, at that individual's expense, have an oppurtunity to meet with the Discipline Committee. This Committee shall consist of the Discipline Chair and three (3) members-at-large, as selected by the Chair, from League teams not in the "tier" of those involved in the appeal.
 

BY-LAW 19: PROTESTS AND GRIEVANCES

19.1 Game protests or grievances must be made verbally to a member of the Executive no later than 24 hours after the occurrence of the protested or grieved issue.

19.2 A written report substantiating the protest or grievance must be filed with the Grievance/Disciplinary Committee no later than 48 hours subsequent to the verbal notification.

19.3 All protests and grievances shall be considered by the Grievance/Disciplinary Committee within seven (7) days of receipt of the written notification.

BY-LAW 20: APPEALS

20.1 Any decision of the Executive Committee may be appealed (except as noted in by-law #18)

20.2.1 Any appeal of a decision by the Grievance/Disciplinary Committee shall be processed as per by-law 18.6.

20.2.2 In all cases of suspension, the suspension shall remain in effect until the appeal is decided upon by the Executive.

20.2.3 The right of appeal to the Eastern Region Ringette Association, Ringette Ontario, and Ringette Canada remains as always.

20.3 Any appeal of a decision by the Executive Committee shall be processed in the following manner:

(a) the appeal must be filed within 48 hours of the date the decision was made or communicated, along with a $25.00 non-refundable administrative fee, with the President, Vice-President, or Secretary;

(b) the appeal shall be heard at the next Executive Meeting unless compelling reasons can be shown for it to be heard sooner.

BY-LAW 21: AGENDA

21.1 The agenda for all GAARA meetings shall be set by the President and shall be approved at the commencement of each meeting, and shall include:

(a) Call to order

(b) Minutes of the previous meeting

(c) President's report

(d) Vice President's report

(e) Treasurer's report

(f) Secretary’s report

(g) Referee’s report

(h) Statistician’s report

(i) Registrar’s report

(j) Division reps' reports

(j) Standing Committee reports

(k) New business

(l) Adjournment

BY-LAW 22: ATTENDANCE AT GAARA MEETINGS

22.1 Any team not represented at a general meeting, or at a Tournament Committee meeting:

(a) shall pay fine as per Team Contract (see by-law #26);

(b) may be called upon to explain the absence to the Executive; and

(c) shall forfeit their say on issues raised on that occasion.

BY-LAW 23: SKILL DIVISIONS

23.1 The league will be partitioned into skill divisions as follows (all skill divisions, unless otherwise stated, are female only):

(a) A: This would be a continuation of the playing levels/skills of the Belle AA ranks and would include other adult players with equivalent playing skills. Players coming out of the Belle AA ranks must play on an A division team within GAARA.

(b) BB: would be a continuation of the playing levels/skills of the Belle A ranks and would include other adult players with equivalent playing skills. Players coming out of the Belle A ranks generally play on a BB division team within GAARA.

(c) B: would be a continuation of the playing levels/skills of the Belle A/B ranks and would include other adult players with equivalent playing skills. Players coming out of the Belle A/B ranks generally play on a B division team or higher within GAARA.

(d) CC: would be a continuation of the playing levels/skills of the Belle B ranks and would include other adult players with equivalent playing skills. Players coming out of the Belle B ranks generally play on a CC division team within GAARA.

(e) C: would be a continuation of the playing levels/skills of the Belle B ranks and would include other adult players with equivalent playing skills as well as higher-skilled Dev players.

(f) Dev: would be a non-competitive/entry-level for players with little to no previous ringette experience or knowledge of the game where the non-aggressive play will be encouraged.

(g) MASTERS: would be an age level designation reserved for adult players 30 years of age and over. The "Masters" designation would be in addition to a skill level designation. 

23.2 Where a sufficient number of teams have registered, the Executive may establish upper and lower calibre sub-divisions within the skill divisions.

BY-LAW 24: GAARA LEAGUE PLAY

24.1 Generally, returning teams will be assigned to the same skill division in which they played at the end of the previous season. The Executive reserves the right to move a team to a different skill division if their record from the previous season warrants such movement. If a team’s Pre-Registration information indicates that their make-up has changed significantly and/or if the team requests a different skill division, the Executive will evaluate the information and assign the team to the appropriate skill division.

Teams new to GAARA must indicate in which skill division they wish to participate. The information provided in the team Pre-Registration form, the Player History Forms and other documents submitted at registration will be evaluated by the Executive who may assign the team to a different skill division if deemed appropriate.

24.2 The Executive may move teams to a higher or lower skill division for the second half of the season if their record has demonstrated that they are too strong or too weak for the division in which they are playing. The membership will be advised of such movement at the re-alignment meeting in November.

24.3 All teams shall have the option of requesting approval from the GAARA Executive to play in a higher division if they have demonstrated their skill level to be competitive.

24.4 The Registrar shall be the contact person for players who wish to join teams within the league. Teams shall inform this person of openings on their teams.

BY-LAW 25: EVALUATION OF PLAYERS AND TEAMS

25.1 Returning players may play at the same or higher skill division as the previous year. Requests to move to a lower skill division must be made in writing at the time of pre-registration and must include the rationale for the request. No movement of players to a lower skill division may be made without the approval of the GAARA Executive.

25.2 Players new and returning after a 2-year absence to the league must submit a Player Evaluation and Registration Form as per by-law #1.5. These players will be evaluated according to the information provided on the Player Evaluation and Registration Form by the VP. Should the VP feel that the player is too strong for the division that they are registering in; the VP will seek input from at least 2 other members of a different skill division of the executive. If each of the members agrees that the player is too strong for the division in which they have been pre-registered, the team representative will be notified that the player cannot participate in that division.

25.3 Teams who feel a player on an opposing team is not of the appropriate skill level for the division in which they are playing shall make their opinion known in writing to their Division representative. The Division representative shall bring this information forward for discussion to the Executive who shall determine if any further action is warranted.

25.4 The GAARA Executive reserves the right to perform evaluations of players at their discretion (at the team’s expense) and to re-assign individual players or teams to divisions based on these evaluations.

25.5 A team who wishes to appeal a decision (see by-law 20 in appeals) of the Executive regarding the evaluation of players must do so to the Vice President of GAARA within 48 hours of having received notice of the decision. The appeal must be in writing and must contain a full rationale for the appeal. Based on the information provided, the Executive will determine if a further evaluation of the player in question is warranted. No more than two evaluations of a player will be performed within one playing season.

BY-LAW 26: GAARA / TEAM CONTRACT

26.1 At the beginning of each season, every team will post a $100.00 bond and sign a Team Contract with GAARA.

26.2 The bond will be paid by the date set for receipt of the first half of the league fees.

26.3 Failure to fulfil the responsibilities listed in the contract will result in a fine being paid to GAARA.

26.4 GAARA fines will be deducted from the $100.00 bond. Teams whose bond level drops to twenty-five (25) dollars or less by December 31st shall put forth an

additional fifty (50) dollar bond payable on or before January 15th. Any monies remaining will be returned at the end of the playing season.

26.5 Eastern Region Ringette Association and Ringette Ontario fines and fees will be invoiced by GAARA directly to the appropriate team and not deducted from the GAARA bond. Eastern Region Ringette Association fines and fees include but are not limited to missing release forms, risk management forms, and injury/accident forms, and coaching and officiating clinics. Ringette Ontario fines and fees include but are not limited to Team Registration Form adjustment fees, provincial tournament fees, fines for coaches not wearing helmets on the ice, and any accumulated interest. If a team has any outstanding invoices as of the AGM all players of that team will be considered “not in good standing” with GAARA and shall not be permitted to register on that or any other GAARA or Eastern Region Ringette Association team until the amount is paid in full.

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