ACHA Announcement Jun 17, 2019:
To: ACHA Membership
From: Craig Barnett, ACHA Executive Director
Date: Monday, June 17, 2019
Re: IMPORTANT ACHA MEMBERSHIP UPDATE
As the ACHA and our membership prepare for its 29th season of operations and as the only recognized non-NCAA Collegiate Hockey Association under the USA Hockey umbrella, we wish to address some important items as it relates to our membership.
As I complete my first season as the new Executive Director, I will state that the ACHA has room for improvement. We will continue to enhance our communication with membership, provide transparency, and ask membership for input on matters, especially those that affect their teams, financials and student-athlete experience. As I have stated on individual calls with membership, on Town Hall conference calls, and at our Annual Meeting, this is a priority of mine as well as part of my professional makeup.
We are very proud of our membership and accomplishments of the 500+ teams that competed this past year. As the governing body of 5 unique Divisions with different goals, level of play, budgets, regions, leaders, and challenges, it is important to assess our status and make changes to enhance the tremendous growth our sport and membership is experiencing. Changes at this level do not happen overnight but must be well thought out, communicated and planned. Membership elects a Board every two years to provide oversight to an executive staff that runs the day-to-day business of the association. This is quite simply how the ACHA conducts its business on behalf of our membership and what my expectations and experiences have been since I gratefully was hired in this role.
Many of us are aware of a group led by DVCHC President Mr. John Rinck, DVCHC Commissioner Mr. Jay Turcotte, former Colonial States League Consultant/Commissioner Mr. Mark Purowitz, ACCHL Commissioner Mr. Mike Walley, Empire Commissioner Mr. Jon LaRochester, former ACHA M2 Commissioner Mr. Jay Peacock and others have been actively recruiting teams to join a new, non-ACHA association called CHF, or College Hockey Federation.
The ACHA respects and supports that all teams have the choice and decision to play under any association and league they feel is best for them. In the best interest of ALL student-athletes, the ACHA would like to state some facts for those teams so they have accurate information to make the best choice for their student-athletes. Based on calls from ACHA membership and reviewing the CHF presentation that is being used to solicit teams to move away from the ACHA, we find it imperative to correct some misstatements with supporting documentation.
For those teams trying to make decisions about the ACHA and CHF, here are some facts to consider:
A) ACHA is the only non-NCAA College Hockey Partner of USA Hockey: During the Adult Council meeting last week at USA Hockey Annual Congress meeting in Colorado Springs, CO , the question regarding CHF membership in USA Hockey was asked. Below is the official response from USA Hockey:
“CHF (College Hockey Federation) is not sanctioned by USA Hockey and is not a member of USA Hockey. The ACHA is the only non-NCAA college hockey partner of USA Hockey. The extremely positive partnership between USA Hockey and ACHA has existed since 1997 and we are currently under a 5-year contract with every intention of working toward and renewing another long-term contract. Anything to the contrary is false. Each season USA Hockey produces a letter to the ACHA stating which leagues the ACHA can schedule games against such as the USHL, NAHL, etc. This document will be produced after the 2019 USA Hockey Annual Congress and distributed throughout the ACHA as in the past to make sure proper coverage is in place throughout the season.”
In addition, the attached letter dated June 14, 2019 from USA Hockey was sent to Mr. John Rinck and the CHF group to clarify their status. This alone should clarify some of the misstatements and rumors that have been circulating around (see enclosed document).
B) The Value of USA Hockey Insurance as a Member of the ACHA: One of the biggest values our ACHA members receive is USA Hockey insurance.
· As the exclusive college partner of USA Hockey, ACHA members receive insurance for $700 per team (this is part of your ACHA annual dues).
· This includes a team roster of up to 30 players and 4 coaches.
· In order for a non-ACHA team to register with USA Hockey, each individual player would need to register with their respective affiliate and then be claimed by an affiliate team (please contact your USA Hockey district/affiliate for details).
· The cost to register individually through an affiliate for 2019-20 will be $46/player or coach (up from $40 last season) plus any affiliate fees.
· The ACHA value of a 30 player and 4 coach team roster at $700 is equivalent to a non-ACHA team registering only 15 members (players and/or coaches) through their affiliate to attain USA Hockey membership and insurance.
C) ACHA Exclusive Partnership with USA Hockey: Similar to USA Hockey partnerships with Junior hockey leagues, the ACHA is the only sanctioned college hockey association under the USA Hockey umbrella. For scheduling purposes, the list of sanctioned college hockey and junior hockey leagues include: ACHA, USHL, NAHL, EHL, and NA3HL. Games scheduled against NCAA programs will also be permitted. As stated in the enclosed document by USA Hockey and per ACHA rules (Part 3, Section 6 of the ACHA Manual), ACHA registered teams are prohibited to play games against non-registered teams and leagues. If an ACHA team schedules and plays a game vs. a non-registered team then the ACHA has the responsibility to inform the non-registered team, USA Hockey game officials, ACHA team, academic advisor/university supervisor, players and parents that USA Hockey benefits and services are null and void for this game and all activities surrounding this game. This action will also jeopardize their USA Hockey membership (see enclosed document).
D) ACHA Affiliate Agreements with Leagues and Conferences : Part 2 Article 1 section 5 b of our By-Laws reads: “For insurance coverage purposes, all local ACHA leagues seeking affiliation must complete the Affiliation form and submit it to the corresponding Commissioners by August 1st of each year. The Affiliation form to be distributed for discussion. The Affiliation grants local league officers and officials ACHA insurance and D&O coverage benefits. [2006, 2012]” We are currently updating the Affiliate form and all leagues and conferences will be required to complete and submit this form. This form will ensure that your league or conference is officially affiliated with and recognized by ACHA to make sure the insurance benefits will inure to your league or conference.
E) Declaration of ACHA Membership for 2019-20 Season : In order to provide clarity for our membership for the 2019-20 season, we are requiring teams and leagues to confirm their official intent to be a member of the ACHA by JULY 12, 2019 . This will set a hard date for teams and leagues to confirm participation in the ACHA and as a sanctioned member of USA Hockey, thus protect our membership schedules.
PROCESS TO DECLARE – Before JULY 12, 2019:
- Please reply to firstname.lastname@example.org
- State which team/school you represent - Do NOT abbreviate school name, thank you.
- State what Division your team/school competes in (M1, M2, M3, W1, W2)
- Include your name, contact information and role with your school/team
- Declare YES if you are officially committed as a member of the ACHA or NO if you will not be a member of the ACHA for 2019-20.
Documents enclosed include:
- ACHA Memo to Membership July 2019
- USA Hockey letter to CHF clarifying non-ACHA members registration process
- USA Hockey /ACHA Sanctioned Letter 2019-20
- ACHA Manual (Revisions from 2019 Annual Meeting still being updated and will be forthcoming)