League Mismanagement

Aside from the financial mismanagement and election mismanagement, SRRBBL league mismanagement is evident in many areas, to include: SRRBBL By-Laws, SRRBBL Virginia SCC Registration, PRCS Violations, Providing Misinformation to PRCS and Other Mismanagement Concerns.

1. SRRBBL By-Law Mismanagement

The by-laws that governed SRRBBL, up until June 1, 2017, were poorly written.  Those now “old” SRRBBL By-Laws, no longer on the SRRBBL site, can be found here:  SRRBBL BY LAWS pre 6-2-17 . It is unclear which SRRBBL Board created those by-laws. Regardless, all one needs to do is look in the direction of the Farmwell Station Basketball League (local basketball league) or the Mercer Lunsford Basketball League (local basketball league) to see what good by-laws look like. Aside from being poorly written as it relates to content and effectiveness, the SRRBBL By-Laws contained grammar issues, multiple fonts and it appeared that a “replace all” was done to get the SRRBBL name in there. (No one is looking for the SRRBBL By-Laws to be perfect, but they should at least be acceptable.)  The SRRBBL By-Laws were not posted on the SRRBBL site and had to be obtained by asking PRCS to provide them, which took three weeks due to delay on the part of SRRBBL.

The SRRBBL By-Laws were later posted on the website.

In those SRRBBL By-Laws, many things were covered, such as holding an annual meeting in April to elect a Board of Directors. If you talk to most SRRBBL coaches, there has not been an annual meeting or elections in over four years. Regardless, those by-laws are no longer in effect.

In late May of 2017, the SRRBBL By-Laws were removed from the SRRBBL website.

On June 2, 2017, under continued mounting pressure from the SRRBBL Community , and PRCS, the SRBBBL Board created revised SRRBBL By-Laws and posted them on the SRRBBL website.  The new SRRBBL By-Laws can be found here on the SRRBBL website. It is easy to conclude that the new SRRBBL By-Laws are an attempt to address the election and financial concerns of the SRRBBL Community, but not in a good way.

Three new revisions that stick out very clearly in the new SRRBBL By-Laws:

A. “The Coaches can nominate for unfilled positions on the Board of Directors, the Board of Directors shall recruit and select replacement board members in the event of resignations and other Board member departures.” “The Board of Directors shall be selected by the existing Board of Directors.”

If you read the full document, unless the entire SRRBBL Board steps down, Coaches can only nominate a single vacancy and the SRRBBL Board has the final say. Basically, the Board is the Board until the Board decides not to be the Board. This is unheard of in any youth sports organization. SRRBBL is owned by its Members, not owned by the Board. Organizations like Farmwell Station or Mercer Lunsford allow for any Member to run for the Board and challenge incumbent Board Members.

B. Section “Transactions with Interested Parties”

Questions continued to be raised regarding transactions between SRRBBL and the SRRBBL Commissioner’s own company, called Horizon Institute, which runs a summer basketball league. It has been highlighted that if any monies or goodwill were exchanged between SRRBBL and the Horizon Institute, that it is a major conflict of interest. This is why the financials that SRRBBL Commissioner Anton Perkins provided are not enough, bank accounts and cash flows need to be provided. The new section “Transactions with Interested Parties” allows for this conflict of financial interest.

C. Section “No Compensation for Directors.”

The title of this section is misleading. In this section it mentions that the SRRBBL Board members cannot be compensated (because that would make the league ineligible for gym space with PRCS), but they also mention that, “but nothing herein shall be construed to preclude any Board Member from serving the League in any other capacity and receiving compensation. Moreover, the Board member may receive reasonable reimbursement for travel and other approved expenses upon request and written documentation.”  This new section speaks volumes. The new SRRBBL By-Laws allow for SRRBBL Board Members to receive compensation as coaches or in other capacities—why is this being added to the SRRBBL By-Laws at this time?  This is a volunteer organization–why would SRRBBL be using registration fees to pay volunteers of the league, versus using the money to benefit the players in the league?   Other youth sports organizations, that are volunteer-based, do not allow for league Coaches of others to receive compensation in any form. 

It is worth noting that Commissioner Anton Perkins told the Loudoun-Times Mirror, “We are a complete volunteer organization…”.  The changes made to the SRRBBL By-Laws, by Commissioner Anton Perkins and the other SRRBBL Board Members, indicate otherwise.

There are other sections that have been revised or added. The document is still a carryover from the last document, still containing grammatical and formatting errors, and for the most part, still inept. One can only surmise that, given the new SRRBBL By-Laws, the concerns of the SRRBBL Community are valid.

2. Failure to Maintain SRRBBL Virginia SCC Registration

The status of SRRBBL in the state of Virginia (VA) came into question back in February 2017. It was determined that SRRBBL’s VA SCC status expired back in early 2015, potentially making SRRBBL a non-legal entity for over two years. (SRRBBL’s VA SCC number is 05473178.  This is public information.) If that is the case, it is unclear how SRRBBL could have obtained legitimate insurance coverage if they were in fact not a legal entity. That potentially translates into SRRBBL kids had been playing in space, provided by PRCS and their policy, and not having the proper insurance coverage.

On April 6, 2017, one day after the last SRRBBL Board meeting and in the middle of this movement for change within SRRBBL, SRRBBL again became a registered VA SCC entity be renewing their VA SCC status. SRRBBL was “reinstated”, as shown here:

SCC_Reinstatement_April2017

While the reinstatement is a step in the right direction, letting it lapse for two years and only taking action after the SRRBBL Community pointed it out, is unacceptable for a youth sports organization.

On May 10, 2017, without notice to the SRRBBL Community, SRRBBL removed Commissioner Anton Perkins as the registered agent in the state of Virginia for SRRBBL, and changed it to SRRBBL’s attorney, Robert Showers. This attorney is also the registered agent for Commissioner Anton Perkins other company, Horizon Institute. (This is all public information.)

As a side note, it is extremely important to note what transpired on August 12, 2017.   Within two days of the Loudoun Times-Mirror contacting the lawyer for SRRBBL, in order to ask questions, which was on or about August 10, 2017, SRRBBL ordered a “Certificate of Good Standing” from the VA SCC.  The history or all of SRRBBL’s transactions with the VA SCC can be found here.  Why would there be the need to go request this certificate, at this exact time?

3. Multiple PRCS Violations

An email was sent to Dave Carver, the head of PRCS for Loudoun County, on May 2, 2017. PRCS allocates gym and field space to youth sports in Loudoun County. The email pointed out areas where SRRBBL was in violation of two PRCS policies: “Revised Allocation Policy Memo / Loudoun County Department of Parks, Recreation and Community Services Policies and Procedures for Athletic Space Allocation” and “Code Conduct, Sports League Activities, Loudoun County Department of Parks, Recreation and Community Services.”

A. Revised Allocation Policy Memo / Loudoun County Department of Parks, Recreation and Community Services Policies and Procedures for Athletic Space Allocation
V – Applying for Allocated Athletic Space, B. All applicants agree to adhere to the Loudoun County Sports Codes of Conduct.

Please see below under “B.  Code of Conduct, Sports League Activities, Loudoun County Department of Parks, Recreation and Community Services”. It would seem that SRRBBL is potentially in violation of the Code of Conduct.

V – Applying for Allocated Athletic Space, G. A copy of the leagues insurance coverage with the league name listed as insured and must accompany the request and County of Loudoun and Loudoun County Public Schools shall be named as an additional insurer.

The status of SRRBBL in the state of Virginia (VA) came into question. SRRBBL’s VA SCC status expired back in early 2015, potentially making SRRBBL a non-legal entity for over two years. If that is the case, it is unclear how SRRBBL could have obtained legitimate insurance coverage if they were in fact not a legal entity. That potentially translates into SRRBBL kids playing in space, provided by PRCS and their policy, and not having the proper insurance coverage. On April 6, 2017, one day after the last Board meeting and in the middle of this movement for change within SRRBBL, SRRBBL again became a registered VA SCC entity.

B. Code Conduct, Sports League Activities, Loudoun County Department of Parks, Recreation and Community Services

League Conduct – Provide for handling league funds with audits, insurance, and fiscal oversight procedures.

None of this is happening, plain and simple. There are too many red flags as it relates to the financials and financial management of SRRBBL. Tax filings, financials not making sense versus the information the league is providing, 2016 P&L provided with “round numbers”, not on a legitimate financial statement, not system generated, etc.

Penalties for Violating Code of Conduct – While the individual league holds the responsibility of monitoring and enforcement of individual league rules, the Loudoun County Department of Park, Recreation and Community Services (PRCS) may enforce penalties on a case by case basis, if necessary.

Given all that has been outlined above, it seems SRRBBL is potentially in violation of PRCS policies, and it is time for PRCS to step in, properly assess the situation and, if necessary enforce penalties and / or recommend change.

Given all or any of the above, one would hope PRCS would take action, but they did not. In fact, in some cases, when a concern from the SRRBBL Community was relayed to PRCS, the SRRBBL Board immediately took action to correct previous transgressions.

4. SRRBBL Provided Misinformation to PRCS for 2016

On May 31, 2017, it became evident that the SRRBBL Board provided the following info to PRCS for the 2016-2017 season: 668 total kids in all of SRRBBL in 2016. Below you can see the numbers for previous years and what was reported for 2016:

Picture10

This was all determined via PRCS having to formally provide the info to individuals outside of the SRRBBL Community.

In the last Board meeting, SRRBBL Commissioner Anton Perkins claimed over 1,000 kids. In an email dated April 21, 2017, Board Member John Salamone claimed over 900 kids.   (Also worth noting is, at the Board meeting, Commissioner Anton Perkins claimed the early registration fee was $110 per player, and his own fellow SRRBBL Board Member had to correct him by pointing out that it is $125.) Hearing first over 1,000 kids, then seeing over 900 kids in print, the 668 number reported to PRCS seemed odd.

In an effort to get the real numbers, the SRRBBL Community reached out to Coaches / Assistant Coaches / Division Coordinators in SRRBBL for this past season, in order to obtain the correct numbers. The SRRBBL website was also referenced to validate the travel team numbers, it is listed on the SRRBBL website. (Also listed on the SRRBBL website is the number of teams per Divisions. In corresponding with the SRRBBL Coaches / Assistant Coaches / Division Coordinators, the information they provided, regarding numbers of teams in their divisions, ties exactly to the number of teams listed on the SRRBBL website.) The only divisions not reached were the Boys 3 and Girls 7 & 8 representatives, so it was assumed six (6) kids per team for those teams, in order to be conservative.

It became clear, without a doubt, that the number of 668, provided by SRRBBL to PRCS, was incorrect and off by a magnitude of at least 23%, and most likely north of 26%.  The analysis compared what SRRBBL provided to PRCS in terms of players and what the SRRBBL Commissioner provided to the SRRBBL Community in terms of the 2016 P&L, versus what the actual numbers shake out to be. The analysis was compiled based on the individuals in the league who had the actual, correct player information and were involved in helping to manage the real number of players, which was estimated to be at least 828 and most likely closer to 842. Also, the gross income of $87,500 would then be wrong, gross income should be at least $103,500, and closer to $105,250, and this is assuming early registration fees of $125–registration fees are as high as $160. The only two logical answers that can explain this large gross income discrepancy is that 128 kids played for free, or there were over 702 sibling discounts, and one would think neither of those are the case.

Assuming the number of players reported to PRCS was incorrect, PRCS charges a per player fee, that makes thing a little more interesting for PRCS, one would think. On the 2016 P&L provided by the SRRBBL Board, it lists “PRCS Facility Fees” of $8,350. That is 668 * $12.50 per player = $8,350. With evidence pointing to a number of at least 828 players in SRRBBL, that is $2,000 that was not paid to PRCS.

It is extremely important to note what transpired starting May 31, 2017.  Members of the SRRBBL Community reached out to Dave Carver at PRCS, to point out the player discrepancy mentioned above, and potential monies not paid to PRCS.

On June 1, 2017, PRCS responded with, “looking into it.”

On June 7, 2017, inquiries were again made to PRCS. On that same day, PRCS replied saying that “we have a missing payment on either their end (SRRBBL) or ours, so we are waiting for the cancelled check.”

The final response came from PRCS on June 22, 2017, stating, “A check went out to PRCS (from SRRBBL) on December 20, 2016, in the amount of $2,312.50. It has not yet been cashed by PRCS. A new check is being mailed. This check was addressed to a staff person who left and may have been lost of misdirected.”

Interesting story. Regardless, by saying that there is an additional $2,312.50 due to PRCS by SRRBBL, six months after the fact, SRRBBL is admitting the number of players is not 668, but rather 668 + 185, or 853 players. ($2,312.50 / $12.50 per player fee = 185).

To reiterate:

  • An expense was incurred in 2016, and known about in 2016, but it was not accounted for in the 2016 P&L sent to the SRRBBL Community on April 25, 2017 by SRRBBL Commissioner Anton Perkins.  
  • SRRBBL reported 668 players initially to PRCS, but six months later, after the SRRBBL Community estimated that there were between 828 and 842 players in the league, SRRBBL admitted there were 853 players. and SRRBBL knew this back in December by referencing a missing check that was supposedly sent.

5. Additional Mismanagement Concerns

A.  In June of 2015, the SRRBBL Commissioner used the SRRBBL email distribution list to sell his music on iTunes and Amazon.

The league is for ages 10-18. The content of his music is not appropriate for most of the age groups in SRRBBL. When children are watching music videos, of the Commissioner of a youth basketball league, singing about “sex”, that is unacceptable.  The music video can be viewed here.  This is a major misuse of SRRBBL email distribution lists. It’s spamming SRRBBL members via a list that was not legally obtained.

B.  Up to and including the 2014 season, SRRBBL players were provided with custom jerseys, based on their team name.

In 2015 and 2016, the jerseys changed to reversible pennies that cost no more than $9.00 wholesale, as documented by one SRRBBL Coach close to the process.

C.  At the end of the 2015-2016 season, SRRBBL Board Members stated that the 2016-2017 SRRBBL Registration would start early in the 2016-17 season, one reason being in order to make sure the jerseys arrived on time.  (The were jersey issues for the 2015-2016 season.)

For the 2016-2017 season, the registration did start earlier, but the SRRBBL pennies, not jerseys, arrived Friday night at 8pm, the evening before the first games of the season started–some SRRBBL Coaches left after waiting two hours for the jerseys to arrive, with no jerseys in hand.  Some SRRBBL Coaches did not have the pennies for the first games on Saturday morning and were forced to use old jerseys and tape to create numbers.

D. Up to and including the 2014 season, SRRBBL Coaches were provided with a collared SRRBBL shirt, a bag of balls, whistle and clipboard.

That did not happen in 2015 or 2016.

E.  The SRRBBL website is lacking relevant information.

All one needs to do is look in the direction of the Lower Loudoun Boys Football League (local youth football league in Sterling), Lower Loudoun Little League (local youth baseball league in Sterling) or any other sports youth leagues in the local area, to see what information should be on a youth sports league’s website.  The SRRBBL website does not list the Board Members names, nor does it show what each of the Board Members are responsible for–at a minimum, there should be listed a President / Commissioner and a Treasurer.  Please note the current SRRBBL By-Laws on the SRRBBL website references Board positions of President, Treasurer and Secretary, and yet it is unclear which of the three SRRBBL Board Members are operating in what capacity.

F.  The SRRBBL Board is lacking adequate volunteers.

Again, if you were to look at the Farmwell Station Basketball League, the Ashburn Youth Basketball League (local youth basketball league) or the Ashburn Girls Softball League (local youth softball league), you will see that almost all youth sports organization in the local area are staffed with at least five Board Members, with the average being seven Board Members, and all of those Board Members are assigned specific duties.  These leagues take great pride in their league and with the associated responsibilities of their Board Members.  The SRRBBL Commissioner stated at the last Board Meeting that, some weeks, SRRBBL Board Members put in “30 hours of work” for SRRBBL, and yet the current SRBBL Board refuses to run proper elections or allow for more Board positions, as suggested by the SRRBBL Community both at the last SRRBBL Board Meeting and via emails to the SRRBBL Board Members.

G.  The SRRBBL Board Members serve as SRRBBL Head Coaches.

This is another conflict of interest.  There is a reason Boards of youth sports organizations discourage Board Members from serving as Head Coaches.  The only priority of the SRRBBL Board should be their Board responsibilities, to ensure focus is being placed on the right areas that impact the entire league and the kids who play in it.  Likewise, any opportunity for team preferential treatment, due to a Board Member coaching that team, should be avoided at all costs.  It is a known fact that parents have volunteered to coach or help coach teams that Board Members coach, and those volunteer parents were turned away.

To summarize, SRRBBL had inadequate by-laws, but the SRRBBL Board slightly revised them, only to allow for an unfair election process, paying themselves as coaches and paying their associated companies. The SRRBBL Board allowed their VA SCC status to lapse back in early 2015, but renewed it in early 2017 due to mounting pressure from the SRRBBL Community. SRRBBL has violated some of PRCS’ policies, and the SRRBBL Board provided false information to PRCS, avoiding an additional $2,000 owed to PRCS. Finally, the Commissioner has used the league email distribution lists to sell his own music which is inappropriate for children, the SRRBBL website does not contain enough info, jerseys and other league equipment has suffered and the SRRBBL organization is in dire need of more volunteers that the current SRRBBL Board refuses to address.  This is league mismanagement.