The Zone Directors opened the meeting and welcomed those in attendance.
The minutes of the September meeting of the Eastern Zone were approved. The budget was distributed.
Pete Gannon announced that Isabelle Fraser recently had hip surgery and was unable to travel to this meeting, but extended the best wishes of the Eastern Zone for a speedy recovery.
LONG COURSE SUPER SECTIONALS: Chuck Jacobs spoke about this summers Super Sectionals meet and he announced that information about the meet would be on his team's web site on the Monday following this meeting. Go to: www.cbacswimming.org for more information on long course summer super sectionals. Chuck advised that Frank Ching will be the meet referee and that the meet will offer a National Officials certification opportunity. The facility is a new eight lane 50 meter with an adjacent seven lane 25 yard pool for warm-up & warm-down. Those with questions may contact Chuck via email directly at: firstname.lastname@example.org
EASTERN ZONE SHORT COURSE MEET: Fred Killian who served as the meet referee gave a brief report of a smoothly run Eastern Zone championship meet hosted by Middle Atlantic Swimming.
SECTIONAL REPORTS: Dave Ferris indicated that 2005 northern edition was the most competitive of the sectionals hosted at Long Island pool since the inception of the Sectional meets. Some concerns were expressed about the open format and Dave responded to those issues. George Homewood reported that the southern sectionals meet had two national age group records set on the first day of the meet.
ZONE DIRECTORS REPORTS:
A. Governance Task Force on Committees: The task force was charged to review USA Swimming organizational and administrative structure related to committees and to recommend those changes intended to improve organization efficiency and effectiveness. The Task Force has recommended retiring and or consolidating several committees. The Task Force reached the understanding that a standing committee would be a committee listed in the bylaws. A special committee would be listed in the policy manual. A total of 44 action and one housekeeping items and the recommendations of the Task Forces have been posted on the USA-S web site. In the place of committees will be an increased use of task forces for specific purposes with a limited term. An LSC Development committee is proposed in the new structure.
B. Governance Task Force on House of Delegates: The task force was asked to review organization and administrative structure of the House of Delegates and recommend changes to improve efficiency and effectiveness. The recommendations of the Task Force are as follows: 1. To maintain the existing structure of the USA Swimming HOD as it currently exists. 2. Reduce the percentage of Presidential at-large appointments from 10% to 5% of total membership as members of the HOD but continue to give 25% of those total appointments to the five LSC's having the largest number of registered athletes. 3. First time members of the House of Delegates (those who have not previously attended a USA Swimming convention) should have voice but no vote at convention. The Task Force has written proposed legislation for consideration by the House of Delegates at the USAS Convention. A discussion about athlete representatives voting at their first convention was held; it was clarified that athletes have 20% of the vote at the House of Delegates and their mechanism might include weighted voting.
C. Background Checks Task Force: The objective was to develop and recommend procedures for background checks for coaches, USA swimming staff and appointed volunteers who interact with swimmers of minority age in the course of performing duties on behalf of USA Swimming. The pilot program with the Florida Department of Law Enforcement included 85 members, of which 65 registered and 55 who submitted information for the study. One person was found to have a motor vehicle violation in their police record. Pete Gannon reported that the pilot project was disappointing due to the small level of participation, the high cost and the process. There will be a conference call with the Task Force and the USA Swimming Board of Directors during the summer to consider proposals for the September USAS convention.
D. United States Anti-Doping Agency: The USA-S Board at their April meeting endorsed the USADA procedures that have been recently proposed and adopted: "We endorse their policies and procedures and programs to fight doping".
E. United States Olympic Committee: Steve Rousch made a presentation on behalf of the USOC to the USA-S board and answered questions about the USA-S relationship with the USOC and our annual funding by the USOC. The USOC favors a governance structure similar to the one that they have recently adopted; the USOC Board structure was reduced in the last year from more than 100 members to 11 directors. The USOC is already evaluating NGB governance and overall performance and has implemented a new structure for distributing support money directly to athletes instead of through the NGB's. Pete feels relationship with USOC is close and that USA-S is in a good position at this time although USOC is funding NGBS on year at a time rather than on a four year basis as USA Swimming would prefer.
ATHLETES REPORT: Eastern Zone Athlete Representative Robbie Fischetti announced that the Athletes would be meeting at lunch to discuss the "definition of an athlete", a topic that the Athletes Executive Committee has been recently addressing. Robbie announced that it was Lauren Fraley's 18th birthday today.
TECHNICAL PLANNING COMMITTEE REPORT: John Hirschmann reported that the Eastern Zone Technical Planning committee met for 90 minutes on Friday evening for discussion about several proposals that were presented: as follows:
A. Zones Hirschmann initially offered the following motion as the recommendation from the Technical Planning regarding Eastern Zone meet eligibility. He emphasized the motion would NOT apply in the summer 2005 and and if adopted would apply to both the SC and LC meets.
"It would apply to 13/Over swimmers beginning in September 2005
If you achieve an actual USA Swimming Junior National Championship QT, you may not compete in any event at zones.
If you achieve an Eastern Zone sectional cut in an event, you may not swim the event at Zones (SC QT would apply to SC, LC QT would apply to LC.) (The rules pertaining to participating comparable relay legs or using the time to establish a relay QT would be continued.)
If you achieve a Sectional QT after the entry deadline for the earliest of Sectional entry deadline, you may still compete in that seasons zone meet in that event."
There was discussion and explanation of the motion.
A motion was offered to strike the last two items of the motion as submitted. In support of the motion, it was stated that limiting excluded swimmers to those eligible to attend USA Swimming Junior Nationals would set a more appropriate standard for the quality of swimmer for whom we no longer feel it is appropriate for them to attend zones. The amendment to the motion was approved. As a result, the Eastern Zone meet eligibility policy was changed to read as follows
"Athletes of age thirteen & over who achieve the current USA Swimming Junior National qualifying standard, prior to the entry deadline for the Eastern Zone championship meet, in any event are ineligible to compete at the short course or long course Eastern Zone championships in any individual or relay event effective with the SC 2006 zone meet. (The current rules pertaining to participating in comparable relay legs or using the time to establish a relay QT would be continued.)"
B. Sectionals: There was a discussion about taking additional steps to make the two spring sectional meets consistent, The Zone has already standardized the Order of Events. QT's Scoring and Bonus Rules for the two sectionals. The additional recommendations include a proposal to standardize the rule on relays and that the awards presented to individual event winners, relays, team high point and individual high point should be similar. A motion to limit teams to entering not more than two relays and a motion that relay only swimmers may not compete in time trials were offered, discussed and both were withdrawn. It was agreed that any relays in excess of two per club could compete, but not score A motion to standardize awards presented was approved based on what is the more generous of what is currently offered in two Spring sectional meets.
The problem of teams no showing at the finals of sectionals on Sunday was discussed. A motion was proposed, discussed and passed as follows: A fine of $50 per club will be assessed for each no show of swimmers seeded into finals at the conclusion of the prelim sessions; the club is prevented from competing in future sectional championships in the eastern zone until the fine has been paid. This would only apply on the last day of the meet.
C. Qualifying Times Hirschmann also reported that Technical Planning Committee had discussed the QT's for both the Spring and Summer Sectional meets and how the entry for the two meets compared as well as how non-conforming times compared to conforming times. It concluded it was not prepared to make a recommendation regarding possible changes and thus was tabling the matter at this time.D. Future Events:
Northern Sectional: A bid was received from NES, Harvard & Bay Ocean State Squids at Harvard University on March 9-12, 2006. The Zone accepted the bid by acclimation.
Southern Sectional:March 16-19, 2006: No bids were received. The Technical Planning Chair and the Eastern Zone Directors are authorized to designate a site if a bid is received prior to the next meeting of the Eastern Zone.
Spring EZ Meet March 30 to April 1, 2006: No bids were received. The Technical Planning Chair and the Eastern Zone Directors are authorized to designate a site if a bid is received prior to the next meeting of the Eastern Zone [NOTE: The Eastern Zone received an application from Metropolitan Swimming on June 7th to host the meet and made the award to them on June 16th. The meet will be held at the Nassau County Aquatic Center on the above dates.]
LC 2006 bids were received and accepted at the Fall 2004 Zone meeting.
DOOR PRIZES: SPEEDO provided autograph cards for each delegate's portfolio and following lunch the Athletes drew names for a variety of door prizes provided by USA Swimming sponsor SPEEDO.
AQUATIC FACILITIES CONFERENCE: Aquatic Facilities Conference was held in Colorado Springs and was attended by many people including Ward Foley, Jim Wood, and Ed Dellert. All reports indicate this was one of the best seminars ever offered by USA Swimming and hopefully will be repeated on an annual basis.
A. Elections: John Hirschman was elected to complete the unexpired term (through September 2005) as the Eastern Zone Technical Planning Chairman.
B. Nominations: Eastern Zone Director: Pete Gannon was nominated for the position that he now holds as Eastern Zone Director - Non Coach; additional nominations and the election will be held at the USAS convention in September. Eastern Zone Technical Planning Chair: John Hirschmann was nominated for the position that he now holds; additional nominations and the election will be held at the USAS Convention in September. Member of Age Group Planning Committee from the Eastern Zone: Ward Foley was asked to describe his position of responsibility and was nominated; additional nominations and the election will be held at the USAS Convention in September.
Adapted: Bea Hartigan gave a short report about the activities of the Adapted Swimming Committee.
Awards: Ward Foley reported the Awards committee uses the "traditional eagle" for their awards.
Age Group Chairman Workshop in Colorado Springs - OTC: The attendees from the Eastern Zone were: Pete Barry, John Burke, Kevin Devine, Paul Furbeck, Kip Hein, Bill Marlin, Laura Matuszak, Barry Silver, James Wolfe, Patric Mills Ward Foley offered his comments about the discussions during the workshop:
Age Group Planning: There is a need for increased communication and leadership from the Age Group chairs, and an increased effort to help them build the base of the LSC programs; new Internet programs online Bob Bowman & Dale Salo will be presenters; topics will include retention or boys and single age events for recognition purposes and the scoring for developmental and entry level athletes who finish their event using a legal stroke. Kip spoke about the AG chairs and the positive collaboration with other age roup chairs and exchange great ideas and best practices. James Wolfle spoke about the many valuable resources on the USA-S web site that everyone should look at.
Communication Committee: Ed Dellert (New Jersey) announced that the Communication Committee might be disbanded. At the USAS convention, two seminars will be offered about web site develop: The Best Practices of webmasters and Marketing Swimming through your LSC web site.
Times Database: John Hirschman.(Potomac Valley) reported that there are more than 14 million times in the USA Swimming data base and that all entry times at the USA Swimming Nationals - World Championship Trials had been proven before athletes arrived in Indianapolis. John and others are working closely with LSC SWIMS data loaders to assist them in loading all their meets -- including observed meets including high school and college meets. Technology moves so quickly that it impacts the ever changing duties of LSC offices, staffs and volunteers, There are issues to deal with regarding club representation (particularly regarding relays and observed meets) but this is generally considered a positive.NEW BUSINESS:
A. USA Swimming Logo: Bea Hartigan expressed a preference of the old USA Swimming logo over the one that was developed as a 25th anniversary logo. Bea asked what the procedure is for a reconsideration of the decision to drop the tear drop logo in favor of the new logo.
B. Zone Meet Format: Ray Grant asked for a discussion of the topic of the Eastern Zone meet and its format "as it seems we put off the discussion without ever making a decision". Pete Gannon appointed a task force of the 12 EZ LSC Age Group Chairs (Kip Hein will chair) to communicate ASAP and meet at USAS convention.
SITE & HOST OF 2006 SPRING MEETING: George Homewood of Virginia Swimming offered Richmond on May 13th, the Saturday prior to Mother's Day weekend and it was approved.
Pete Gannon offered thanks to New Jersey Swimming for hosting the 2005 Eastern Zone meeting.
MOTION TO ADJOURN: A Motion to adjourn was unanimously approved.
Respectfully submitted by Gregory Eggert
POSTSCRIPT FROM IRA KLEIN: I hope that everyone got home safe from Newark. I have worked on the question that was asked during the meeting on the CL2 files with birthdays. I spoke with a VP and was told;