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TRU Board Meeting Notes – 8/21/23

At the request of our members the TRU Board will be releasing their monthly board call minutes and notes. View all of the TRU archived minutes or read on for the most recent notes:

  1. Roll Call
    1. Young
    2. Kurylas
    3. McPhail
    4. Dodge
    5. Tate
    6. Hiller
    7. Tomsak
      1. Regrets
        1. Martin
        2. Ohmann-Wilson
  2. New Clubs
    1. Houston Chupacabra (XVs M)
      1. Young: Carrying this over from the last meeting as they had some outstanding documents. We received everything by the deadline and I believe they’ve been included in the MD4 schedule.
      2. McPhail: They are included in the MD4 schedule.
      3. Tate: Excellent.
  3. Clubs not in good standing
    1. ORC – outstanding fines from 2022-23
      1. Tate: We are just keeping them on the list. We haven’t heard anything from them…they aren’t included in the schedule?
      2. McPhail: Correct, they haven’t come forward so they were not included in any schedules. 
    2. HTX, Old Skool RFC, Fort Worth, and OKC Tribe – Eligibility and dues
      1. Young: We covered this in the RRRC call but all of these clubs have committed to attending the Summit with two or more people. HTX has also paid their USAR and TRU dues as well.
      2. Tate: Awesome, glad to hear this.
  4. Grants
    1. 7s Nationals
      1. Dallas M – 157 players= $3,925
      2. Huns M – 160 players= $4,000
      3. HEB W – 14 players= $350
      4. Dallas W – 40 players= $1,000
      5. Little Rock W – 35 players= $875
        1. Tate: We’ve tallied up all the 7s grants and those have already been sent by our Treasurer to the clubs. If not received, please let us know.
        2. Kurylas: Do we give grants to teams that forfeit matches? I believe the Huns forfeited matches last year?
        3. Tate: They forfeited one match last season and their numbers were a bit inflated because they had a 50 person Old Boy trip to Argentina last year. Because of the permission to tour everyone had to be registered on our roster. So this is a one-time thing.
  5. Member Dues
    1. TRU Dues
      1. Player: $50
      2. Coaches $50
      3. Administrators/Volunteer: $25
      4. Match Official: $50
    2. USA Rugby Dues
      1. Player: $40
      2. Coaches: $75
      3. Administrators/Volunteer: $45
      4. Match Official: $75
    3. Senior Club Council Dues*
      1. Player: $15
      2. Coaches: $0
      3. Administrators/Volunteer: $0
      4. Match Official: $0
    4. Totals (includes processing fees)
      1. Player: $109.15
      2. Coaches: $129.94
      3. Administrators/Volunteer: $72.77
      4. Match Official: $129.94
        1. Please be aware that this registration fee pertains to TRU, not TRRA, as their fee structure might differ.
    5. Tate: The big news here is that the USA Rugby National Office increased dues by $10 and the Senior Club Council is absorbing half of that for the members. This is one of the continued benefits that all USAR members are receiving from the Senior Club Council in addition to Playoff Pathways, National Championships, etc. To recap, the SCC is working on behalf of the members and one of our main goals is to ensure that USAR members receive the value that they deserve. As a reminder a few years ago the SCC was able to hold the line and not agree to an increase of dues and we were also able to reduce the insurance deductible as well.
    6. Young: I’ve had conversations with a few folks that the SCC could use a bit of marketing around this and other things that the SCC and the other various committees are doing as members don’t understand the difference between the National Office and the SCC.
    7. Tate: Yes, we are aware and are trying to work on it. We’re getting social media spun up, we’ve got a website and continue to try and make sure that we are making the distinction between the two entities. We do want to emphasize that the USAR National Office is working for members but the SCC is also working for the members as well. 
  6. RX
    1. Registration is open
      1. Tate: Registration for the 2023-24 season is open! Clubs should register their team with USAR and that allows members to register with them. Each club should have at minimum a compliant L1 coach and be working on registering 18+ players. We do want to note that registrations should be pay as you go instead of invoicing. We only had one club take advantage of this feature but we don’t want anyone else doing that, this is a feature for Youth/HS but should not be taken advantage of by our clubs.
      2. Young: Hansel is working on a registration announcement that will go up on the website, out via email and on social media. We will also begin tracking club compliance around September 1.
    2. At-Large Weekly Registration
      1. Young: This was announced a few weeks ago on the RX Administrators call. Individuals can now more easily register for a week of play to cover social or alumni events. 
      2. Dodge: $15 is the base price for that registration.
      3. Tate: Anything that the TRU is going to cover with referees…we need to collect dues from the participants. Seems like this fits alumni events the best.
      4. Young: Yes, I think the intent is to cover those types of events. What else are you thinking of?
      5. Tate: I am thinking of an individual that only plays once a month and uses this, they haven’t paid TRU dues.
      6. Dodge: If you’re talking about a league match you wouldn’t be able to use this because they would not be considered TRU members. They would be considered At-Large USAR members only. They would not be eligible for league play unless they pay USAR and TRU dues and are full members of our Union.
      7. Tate: Ok, this makes more sense! In that case this is all good.
      8. Tomsak: What about players that want to play MD4? So they don’t have a “home club” but still want to play?
      9. Tate: That’s a valid question. According to our regulations, guest players can indeed be utilized, and they might be included in that count. However, please be aware that there is a limit to the number of guest players allowed.
      10. McPhail: Yes, we included this in our discussions with the clubs that would be allowed per existing guidelines in WD3/MD4.
      11. Dodge: The gamesmanship you are talking about could happen over the summer with 7s…
      12. Tate: I’m not as worried about that since it would probably be for TOLA. Now that I know that these At Large memberships won’t work for a league match, I’m comfortable with it. My main concern was people gaming the competition registration.
  7. Elections
    1. Young: Nominations closed on Friday and we received 6 nominations for TRU President. I sent out notices to the nominees for TRU President and the Competitions Committee asking them to confirm that they accept or decline by Tuesday, August 22. Once we have our official nominees we will post them to the website for review. In addition, nominees are encouraged to attend the AGM this weekend for a Q&A forum as well.
  8. 2023-24 Schedule
    1. McPhail: The committee is on their last draft of the schedule. There were a few changes that we were waiting on but those have all resolved now. Hansel and Wendy are updating a few forms on the website and then we will be sending out the schedule to the clubs.
    2. Young: FYI on forms. We are moving away from Gravity Forms on the website to Google Forms. Gravity and Sendgrid were the services we were using and they’ve raised their prices plus limited the sending limit. Google Forms will give us a bit more control and the output is automatic versus a download from the website. 
    3. McPhail: I also wanted to update that I am still trying to work with True South on the Memorandum of Understanding for Gulf Coast but it is very slow going. We had committed to having the new agreement signed in February but here we are…I’d really like to have this done before we have a transition of President. Should we just proceed and assume we’re hosting this year?
    4. Tate: Yes, I think we should go ahead like we are the host.
    5. Dodge: I agree.
    6. McPhail: Wendy, when can we push out a request for hosts?
    7. Young: We can add it into the AGM presentation and post it on the website as well.
    8. Tate: We’d be asking for hosts for all events in 2024? RRRC Championships, Gulf Coast, 7s and Mary Graham?
    9. McPhail: Yes, I think we could package it all into one request so clubs can evaluate which venue they’d like to bid for.
    10. Young: Sounds like a nice package! We’ll get this out to our members after the Summit/AGM/HOF.
  9. Summit – August 25-27, Ft. Worth, TX
    1. Young: Registration closed yesterday and we have 145 courses signed up for! This is 57% more registrants than we’ve ever had and we’re pumped for this event. We released schedules last week as well.
    2. Tate: Right on, it’s going to be a great weekend!
    3. Young: We also announced the Welcome Social on Friday night at the hotel starting at 8PM.
  10. AGMAug 26 in Ft. Worth
    1. Young: We will hold an in-person AGM at the Summit on Saturday afternoon at 3:30pm. Please note the time change as we are working with the instructors to try and encourage courses to end early.
  11. HOF – Aug 26 in Ft. Worth
    1. Young: Get ready for yet another record-breaking event as we’ve successfully sold 267 tickets! Ticket sales officially concluded yesterday.
  12. Corporation Status
    1. Tate: Nothing has changed here.
  13. New Business
    1. TRU Representative to the USAR Senior Club Council
      1. Tate: I would like to make a motion that the Board approve David Dodge as the TRU representative to the Senior Club Council. That way if there is any gap in the transition of the President we are covered. Dodge is already the Treasurer and so he is already attending the meetings. We need this for continuity.
      2. Tomsak: Second.
      3. Tate: Any discussion? None. Any objections? None. APPROVED.
        1. Tate: I will notify the SCC Secretary that Dodge has been appointed to this role. That enables us to carry on regardless of the outcome of the transition.
    2. Eligibility Primer
      1. Dodge: Has anyone started putting together a primer for the changes in eligibility?
      2. Tate: Not that I’m aware of. I think the only changes in definition were around Homegrown Players. I’m not aware of anyone using it though?
      3. Dodge: It was used by lots of players during 7s, not sure if any of them were from the TRU. I’ll add this to my list to put together a primer like I’ve done the past few years.
      4. Tate: Great, thank you.
    3. Tackle Height Change
      1. McPhail: I have received a few questions but is USAR considering the tackle height law change?
      2. Tate: The USAR Referee and Laws Committee is studying the recommended changes but there they are not expected to recommend it for this year. There is a real possibility that changes could be coming but not right now.
    4. Farewell
      1. Tate: It has been an honor and a privilege to be on this Board. I’ve been on lots of different executive boards, committees and this group has been the most cooperative, functional and positive that I’ve ever been associated with. I say that thinking back to my first job as an Officer of my college club in 1986. This is significant and I want to thank everyone and express my gratitude and love for all of you. Where the Union is and where our clubs are…the growth of the Summit and HOF it is a testament to the positivity and cooperation you have all brought to the table.
      2. All: 3 cheers for Tate! Hip, hip, hip, HOORAY!
  14. Meeting adjourned (9:20 PM)