USACA constitution vote postponed again
A scheduled vote to ratify a revised constitution of the USA Cricket Association and other governance recommendations has been postponed yet again. The cause of deferment was the absence of a quorum of voting of member-league presidents at the USACA Special General Meeting on August 16 in Florida.
The SGM was supposed to vote on recommendations from a governance review carried out by the TSE Consulting group in 2013, under former USACA CEO Darren Beazley. One of the recommendations included changing the power structure of the USACA to reduce the size of the current board, cut its power by half and give 50% of it to independent directors. Other recommendations included the establishment of term limits for board members, the redefining of membership categories and the introduction of athlete representation into the board.
Based on the 2012 USACA election, 15 leagues were eligible to vote during the August 16 meeting, although the USACA claims, despite a lack of evidence, to have increased its membership. Based on the 2012 figure, a vote would have needed the attendance of at least eight league presidents. However, only five were present at the meeting in Fort Lauderdale. According to sources present at the meeting, informal discussions were held on proposed constitutional measures before the meeting was adjourned within two hours.
The proposed governance reforms had been championed by Beazley and ICC Global Development Manager Tim Anderson throughout the fall of 2013. However, Beazley had been unable to get the reforms ratified at the USACA AGM last November. Instead, a governance implementation committee was formed to review the TSE report recommendations, with an aim to have its conclusions voted on in the summer of 2014.
The TSE report called for a reduction in the size of the board from the current maximum of 13 members to between "8 and 12". The TSE also recommended that the board's power be significantly reduced, with independent directors being added to make up 50% of the board and athlete representatives included to make up 20%.
On the other hand, USACA's implementation committee has proposed a 15-man board with only four positions for independent directors and three for athletes. It has suggested that the position of the second vice-president be eliminated so that the executive comprises the president, vice-president, secretary and treasurer. The remaining four spots on the board could be filled by consolidating eight administrative regions into four zones.
Crucially, USACA is pushing to change its voting structure in the revised constitution. Currently, each member league president of USACA is allowed one vote for the members of the executive board while member leagues get to vote for the board member to represent their region. USACA is attempting to revise the procedure so that member league presidents would only be allowed to vote for the four proposed zonal representative positions on the board. USACA has offered that instead of having all league presidents vote to decide the USACA president, vice-president, secretary and treasurer, those executive positions be decided by the remaining 11 members of the board.
A source stated that all of these proposals would need to be voted upon during the next USACA general election, which is scheduled for April 2015. However, the source said that the ICC is actively encouraging USACA to follow through with a vote at the next opportunity which would be the 2014 AGM currently scheduled for November 15.
Peter Della Penna is ESPNcricinfo's USA correspondent. @PeterDellaPenna