Changes to USA Swimming House of Delegates Structure Being Considered; Including Shift to Biannual Meeting

Braden Keith
by Braden Keith 3

February 22nd, 2013 National, News

The USA Swimming “Governance Committee” sent out a document on Friday to inform its leadership that it is considering several changes to the structure used for the annual House of Delegates meetings that, among other functions, serves to alter, amend, and produce rules for the sport of swimming in the United States.

Working draft of considerations can be read in full here.

Among the changes that would be most noticeable would be a proposal to alter the way that delegates are distributed to the LSC’s, and a proposal to move to biannual House of Delegates meetings.

Shift in Distribution Based on LSC Enrollment

Under the current model, each Local Steering Committee (LSC) gets 6 delegates. That means that the two biggest LSC’s, Illinois and Southern California with about 37,500 combined members in 2012, get the same number of delegates as the Border Swimming (think El Paso) and West Virginia LSC’s: the two smallest with just over 1,100 combined members.

Under the new proposal, 236 delegates would be divided evenly among the 59 LSC’s at four each; the remaining 153 delegates would be divided among the LSC’s proportionately based on their athlete enrollment at the end of the last Olympic cycle, plus up to 15 at-large delegates that can be appointed by the President.

Changing the Schedule of the House of Delegates Meeting

Aside from a proposal to move the meeting from Wednesday-Sunday to Sunday-Wednesday, the Governance Committee has also begun looking into holding the House of Delegates meeting once after other year, only in even-numbered years.

If that scenario were to happen, they’ve discussed in odd-numbered years having a national convention that was entirely focused on committee meetings and education, rather than the House of Delegates, or filling those odd-numbered years with educational conventions in each zone.

Have an opinion on either matter? The committee is seeking responses from any and all interested parties. Peter Carney (Chair, Governance Committee) at [email protected] or Pat Hogan (Staff Liaison to Committee) at [email protected] are taking the point in gathering feedback on these working proposals and will be accepting opinions and questions.

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3 Comments on "Changes to USA Swimming House of Delegates Structure Being Considered; Including Shift to Biannual Meeting"

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As a member of our BOD and coach, this is fantastic!

Does this mean rule changes will only take place every two years instead of every year?

It will be nice to have that week home in September, but this separates our already unaccountable board from the membership even more.

Peter Carney

A biennial convention would mean that elections, rules changes, budget considerations, and other deliberations would take place every two years. There are provisions in Part V already for approving changes to rules, for emergency reasons and conforming to FINA changes. The Governance Committee is developing a position on whether this should be remain unchanged.

The Committee welcomes feedback on these proposals.

Regarding the comment “this separates our unaccountable board from the membership even more”, I would like to 1) understand why you feel the board is unaccountable and 2) hear any suggestions on how to make board more accountable.

Peter Carney, Chair, USA Swimming Governance Committee

About Braden Keith

Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder of He first got his feet wet by building The Swimmers' Circle beginning in January 2010, and now comes to SwimSwam to use that experience and help build a new leader in the sport of swimming. Aside from his life on the InterWet, …

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