SBO Overview | Contact State Orgs | Benefits & Requirements | Frequently Asked Questions
State-Based Ultimate Organizations: Requirements and Benefits
The following lists and notes are also available in printable format here.
- Benefits (Areas of Control or Flexibility)
- Receive guaranteed startup grant funding from USAU for first 3 years of operation to support & establish organization. Notes.
Paid in regular installments. Total of $15,000 during year 1; $15,000 during year 2; and $10,000 during year 3, so that replacement revenue streams can be developed and in place by year 4.
- Receive share of all membership dues purchased by local members in state territory (membership with USAU will include membership with state organization). Notes.
Share planned to increase in future years. (2016 rates: $4 per Coach & Player, $3 per Adult/College/Youth, $2 per Coach/Organizational, $1 per Affiliate/Friends & Family/Intro). 2015 membership numbers, the most recent complete membership year, are available with breakdowns by state, age, gender, and specific membership level at THIS LINK
- Modify share of membership dues starting in year 2 beyond national rates set by USAU. Notes.
Balance the realities of your operating budget and real expenses with appropriate membership pricing in your state, rather than relying on one-price-fits-all national membership rates. A dollar does not have the same buying power in California that it does in Mississippi.
- Coverage by robust USAU insurance coverage with Directors & Officers (D&O), Commercial General Liability (GL), and Participant Accident policies. Notes.
Sport-specific and appropriate insurance coverage from an A-rated carrier with reliable claims processing. See the various coverage types, levels, descriptions, and other details at usaultimate.org/insurance
. As organizations are able to engage paid staff and maintain property, goods, or supplies exceeding reasonable values, USAU can help orgs connect with advanced coverages including workers' compensation (regulated at the state level), property (including "inland marine" for supplies in transit to/from events), and hired or non-owned automobiles to cover personal vehicles used by organization staff that are not owned directly by the organization.
- Support for annual expenses for professional preparation and filing of IRS form 990. Notes.
Receive reimbursement up to $500/year towards professional accounting services to prepare and file form 990 with the IRS.
- Leverage the organization's unique status as the "Official state organization of USA Ultimate" in your state. Notes.
Market your organization's services and programs more effectively with a unique, preferred relationship with the sport's national governing body as recognized by the US Olympic Committee, which is uniquely empowered by Congress to oversee amateur sports in the U.S.
- Create new local organizational employment/career opportunities in the sport of ultimate. Notes.
Increase the number of paid staff working to grow the sport of ultimate in your state! Progress from having an all-volunteer or mostly volunteer-run organizational structure to being driven by financially supported professional staff.
- Offer locally focused support and resources to ultimate players/teams/events. Notes.
Receive support from national HQ but focus specifically on a single state to offer dedicated attention/service.
- Modify requirements and/or pricing for local USAU programs in state territory beyond national minimums set by USAU. Notes.
For example, USAU camps, LTP/GUM clinics, Coaching (CDP) certification clinics, Observer (OCP) training & certification, etc. Perhaps require organizers to share a revenue portion with state org.
- Negotiate revenue shares and set USAU membership policies with Multi Sport Organization (MSO) programs. Notes.
For example, get ultimate included in State Games
events, YMCA chapters, Boys & Girls Clubs, Catholic Youth Organizations, Jewish Community Centers, etc. Perhaps require membership in exchange for organization/involvement and/or negotiate a revenue share.
- Receive USAU HQ assistance with developing organization bylaws and operating structure. Notes.
Collaborative opportunity to achieve best possible framework for organizational stability and structure.
- Offer state organizational board representation to local USA Ultimate Affiliate organizations. Notes.
Optionally incentivize and reward formal affiliation by local organizations that are serving a specific segment of the sport's constituency and their associated commitment to require membership.
- Professional graphic design services for logo and branding. Notes.
USAU will directly engage & cover the costs for our professional, sport-focused graphic designer to develop the organization's branding, logo properties, and identity for cross-platform use.
- Engage professional services of companies with established USAU and/or USOC relationships. Notes.
Access to preferred partners, industry experts, negotiated prices/rates, etc.
- Improve participant and/or team requirements for event participation beyond national minimums set by USAU. Notes.
For example, implement additional conduct requirements, naming guidelines, uniform requirements, team sponsorship approval, etc. As long as all continue to meet USAU guidelines and requirements, further modification is an option.
- Run and/or approve all hosting bids for local TCT/College/Youth/HS/MS/Beach/Indoor USAU championship events within state territory. Notes.
For bids to host events that are exclusive to local state territory, determine and set bid preference(s). For larger events (e.g., regional or national events), receive bid preference to run the event directly or have approval rights for any eligible entities within local state territory.
- Establish and run new official state championship events to develop emerging divisions or formats. Notes.
For example, create an official state beach championship for multiple gender or age divisions, state indoor championships, a state club or masters championship, state grand masters or great grand masters championship, state middle school championships, or a state youth club championship (or regional invite/warm-up for YCC) perhaps for a new age division (U14, U12, etc).
- Run local youth and adult programs (camps, leagues, tournaments, etc.) in areas not being served by a local USAU Affiliate organization. Notes.
While avoiding any perceived conflict with a committed USAU Affiliate organization, state organizations can develop, implement, and operate a variety of programs & events (revenue stream potential) in areas that are not served by an existing Affiliate, with the goal of establishing programs/models that can be eventually assumed by a local Affiliate organization to grow membership and ultimate programming opportunities.
- Set and retain sanctioning fees (application, participant, paper processing, etc) for events occurring within state territory. Notes.
Optionally, have USAU HQ staff manage events, in which case USAU HQ will set/retain fees. Fees in 2015 were $50-200 per event.
- Modify requirements for YCC team approval and acceptance to national championship event beyond national minimums set by USAU. Notes.
For example, require additional fees, personnel requirements, event minimums, etc.
- Modify event requirements for rostering chaperones and/or coaches beyond national minimums set by USAU. Notes.
For example, require membership for chaperones and/or certification for coaches, even if USAU HQ is not requiring nationally.
- Modify registrant requirements for individual registration events beyond national minimums set by USAU. Notes.
For example, require online registration at Play.USAUltimate.org vs use of external systems and/or emailed spreadsheets, in order to reduce admin/processing time.
- Option to require electronic-only participant waivers of liability and/or membership payments. Notes.
USAU currently accepts both formats (with strong preference for electronic) but state organization can increase selectivity, in order to reduce processing/admin workload.
- Access to the USAU Judicial Committee for handling and resolving any conduct policy violations. Notes.
For complaints that allege inappropriate conduct at an event run by a state organization, the investigation, communication, and resolution of the matter can be appropriately handled by the USAU Judicial Committee.
- Offer Play It Forward youth memberships to local groups/schools/teams/players. Notes.
While USAU currently offers "Play It Forward" memberships only to Affiliate organizations, state organizations will be eligible to additionally award up to $500 in their 1st year with further amounts to be matched 1:1 to local fundraising efforts.
- Set objective measures of financial need for Play It Forward membership grants. Notes.
For example, a National School Meal Program letter, government assistance program documentation, etc.
- Determine New Start Equipment Grant Kit awards to local groups who apply. Notes.
USAU HQ will ship up to 4 grant kits annually to recipients per your determination(s).
- Seek local sponsors and partners for programs and events. Notes.
National sponsors in a category may preclude local sponsors in same category.
- Select and optionally incentivize staff to attend Annual National Convention with complimentary registration. Notes.
For example, award trip to a representative based on demonstrated performance or perhaps based on participant votes. Currently, the convention is being hosted in conjunction with US Open Championships over the 4th of July holiday weekend where some of the world's best men's, women's and mixed teams compete on an international stage.
- Requirements (Areas of Committed Service)
- Support USA Ultimate's mission, vision, goals, and core values, through unbiased service to local members, teams, events, affiliates, and partners as an extension of the national office. Notes.
Provide active and consistent regular communication to members within the state territory. Sign annual agreement with USAU.
- Establish and maintain 501(c)(3) status with IRS. Notes.
i.e., file annual tax returns per federal and state/local laws
- Develop and adopt organizational bylaws with final approval from USAU HQ, including any subsequent changes.
- Establish and maintain a board of directors via process outlined in bylaws approved by USA Ultimate. Notes.
Ensure adequate representation from key metro areas and constituent groups within state territory. Key areas will include process of officer selection, decision making, frequency of meetings, conducting elections, etc.
- Submit a business plan to USAU reflecting revenue growth and organizational sustainability by Year 4. Notes.
As the startup grant funding runs out by Year 4, be ready to compensate with other revenue streams to grow & sustain the organization.
- Grow the state membership by at least 10% from the prior year. Notes.
Nationally, we've seen an average of ~10% annual growth from 2003-2014 so this should be a very achievable metric.
- Run robust youth programs and camps through Affiliates, partners, and/or as part of organizational business model. Notes.
This is a significant revenue opportunity, from both membership dues and from program fees.
- Establish relationships with local youth-serving Multi Sport Organization (MSO) programs. Notes.
e.g., YMCA, Boys & Girls Clubs, Catholic Youth Organizations, Jewish Community Centers, etc.
- Encourage and provide support to local USA Ultimate Affiliates to run USAU-branded programs and sanctioned events. Notes.
Branded programs include USAU camps, LTP/GUM clinics, CDP certification clinics, Observer training, etc.
- Support and enforce USAU policies and decisions. Notes.
e.g., Regarding conduct cases, naming violations, uniform guidelines, sponsorship determinations, etc.
- Establish a trained Safe Sport primary contact along with documented Safe Sport policy and procedures. Notes.
- Support and identify local competition/championship coordinators. Notes.
e.g., State Youth Coordinators, club sectional and college conference coordinators, etc.
- Sanction local events (tournaments, leagues, practices, etc) for local organizers, as well as any & all events run directly by the state organization. Notes.
To familiarize with event sanctioning program, see http://www.usaultimate.org/sanctioning/
for details. Tasks will include:
- Working with USAU Member Services to issue appropriate insurance certificates, as needed.
- Maintaining player/team registration & rostering in USAU event mgmt system (EMS) with tech support from USAU HQ.
- Providing support to organizers/participants, as needed.
- Ensure and/or process the online rostering of all local event participants in USAU event system. Notes.
Tech support for EMS and Play.USAUltimate.org provided USAU HQ.
- Ensure that YCC team eligibility requirements are met. Notes.
For example, verify that leagues are run appropriately, that players participate in leagues, coaches/chaperones complete requirements, etc.
- Ensure that local sanctioned & championship event teams meet all requirements. Notes.
For example, verify that requirements are met for team coaches, chaperones, medical authorization forms, Safe Sport, etc.
- Ensure receipt of all participant membership dues and waivers of liability. Notes.
To indemnify and support the operations of both national and state organizations.
- Process any accepted paper materials in the Play.USAUltimate.org system. Notes.
For example, any paper waivers &/or membership payments made offline (by check, cash, or other method). State organizations have the option to require all materials be submitted online through Play.USAUltimate.org in order to avoid this processing.
- Process applications for Play It Forward (PIF) youth membership grants. Notes.
State organizations will receive a revenue share for PIF members just as for any other membership.
- Process applications for New Start Equipment Grant Kits. Notes.
- Seek approval by USAU HQ for all sponsorship and partnership relationships. Notes.
National sponsors in a category may preclude local sponsors in same category.
- Send a representative to the Annual Convention. Notes.
Currently, the convention is being hosted in conjunction with US Open Championships over the 4th of July holiday weekend where some of the world's best men's, women's and mixed teams compete on an international stage.
We are currently seeking individuals in specific states to begin state-based operations in the next one to two years. See the position descriptions posted on our Get Involved (Jobs) page under the "State Organizers" section for details.
If you or someone you know is interested in being directly involved in creating a state-based ultimate organization for other states, please fill out this online interest form to share more about yourself and your capacity to be involved.
We look forward to growing the ultimate sport with you!