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SBD Global/July 24, 2014/Leagues and Governing Bodies

National Rugby Clubs To Come Together To Oppose Proposed New Funding Model

National Rugby League club chairmen have "stepped up plans to form a united front against the NRL over a push to link future funding to the appointment of independent directors," according to Honeysett & Read of THE AUSTRALIAN. The chairmen’s concerns were "raised a few weeks ago" when they met NRL CEO Dave Smith, where he revealed "details of the new funding model, which some have interpreted as a push by the NRL to try to remove some of the game's longest-serving administrators." Under the new funding model, it is proposed that clubs will "receive money each season but a portion of that is conserved as an 'at risk' payment." The NRL would have the ability to "take back that funding if specific criteria were not met in a range of areas, including corporate governance." The league wants clubs to "adopt a board structure that includes seven directors -- four of those would be elected by football club members while three others would be independent with at least one woman" (THE AUSTRALIAN, 7/24). In Sydney, Josh Massoud reported some of the "most powerful figures at club level met for lunch in Brighton to discuss the NRL's recently announced desire." NRL corporate governance guru Tony Crawford has "spent the past two months presenting the radical plan to club CEOs." The NRL is "already trying to recruit independent directors to help oversee Wests Tigers and Newcastle." But "stronger clubs like Canterbury, the Roosters, Penrith, Parramatta and South Sydney cannot fathom why they should accept directors from outside their organisations" (DAILY TELEGRAPH, 7/24).
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