General Meeting 7th May 2012

Minutes of General Meeting, 7th May 2012






6.59 p.m


Sports House, Sydney Olympic Park, HOMEBUSH.


As per Attendance Sheets ( 78 in attendance)


David Jay, Noel Bissett, Jeff Younis, Liam Nicholls, David Abood, Matt Cecchin, Chris James, Daniel Eastwood, Pat Reynolds, Gavin Reynolds, Adam Cassidy, Steve Lyons, Tom Healy , Phil Haines ( Underline denotes On League Duty) William Drury ( CRLRA), Arthur Konneke. Nick Beashel, Daniel Olford, Scott Todd, John Connor,



Minutes and Actions of this Meeting

Chris Ward in the Chair called for observance of one minutes silence in memory of Kathryn Oultram, wife of Drew Oultram from the Junior Representative Squad.

Congratulations extended by the Chairman to Shane and Danielle Charman on the birth of Harrison James.

Acceptance of Apologies. Moved, R.Garwood Seconded. M.Dunn Carried.

Business Arising from Previous Minutes .

  1. Women’s Development Committee to meet on 20th May .Jo Spagarino is forwarding an agenda.
  2. A CMO Level 1 Course was conducted on 9th, 10th and 11th March.
  3. Sub-Committee Meeting to further consider Association restructure held on April 3rd. To Chairman’s Report.
  4. Director of Finance has sought to recover fees owing by District Associations for Golf Days and Affiliation Fees payable to the NSWRLRA some going back seven years.
  5. Sample cut for women’s shorts has been secured and will be presented to the Women’s Development Committee at their next meeting on 20th May.
  6. Date for Presentation Evening and Ladies’ Night set as Saturday 3rd November at the NSW Leagues Club.
  7. Workers’ Compensation issues have been taken up with Nathan McGuirk and Selina Mucillo at the NRL by the Chairman. A satisfactory outcome was achieved for Luke Potter.
  8. Joint Training Session involving the NRL and Graded Squads was deemed very successful.
  9. The Class Room at League Central has been booked for the July meeting.

Confirmation of Previous Minutes. Moved, Brian Barry Seconded. Scott Shepherd. Carried.  

Board Minutes Summaries from 29.03.12 and , 26.04.2012 were tabled.


ADOPTION OF BOARD MINUTES. Moved B.Gately Seconded, Ian McCall . Carried.

Executive Officer: Mr Frank Leonard



Due Date

  • Correspondence In











  • Correspondence Out
  • Acceptance of Correspondence Moved,R.Garwood Seconded M.Ryan CARRIED


  • Auckland Referees’Association

















  • ARLRA Meetings































  • Restructure Sub-Committee Meeting


  • Illawarra Association Meeting


  • Darwin Visit
















  • Junior Reps. Final Training Night



  • H.Matthews and S.G Ball Finals



  • Referees’ Bowls Day



Items 4012 to 5012 were tabled.

3412 M.Dunn asked if a cheque had been returned for to Canberra DRLRA non attendance of Rod Cranston at the CMO Level 1 Course. Confirmed.

S.Betts asked for Items 2812, 2912, 3012 , 3212 and 4712 to be referred to General Business.

Items 1228 to 1237 were tabled.

S.Betts asked for Items 1225 and 1226 to be included with those from Correspondence In to General Business.



At the invitation of the Auckland Referees’ Association Executive Officer flew to New Zealand and presented two Courses to 15 candidates over the week-end of the 10th and 11th March. Day 1 was a Referees Coaches’ Course and Day 2 was for Referee Educators with a focus on recruitment and Course presentation for Beginning Referees. All attending have received Official Accreditation from the Auckland Rugby League Referees’ Association and it is hoped that the Courses and accreditations will lead to the establishment of a National Accreditation System similar to what we have in Australia.

Attended three meetings of the ARLRA on the 17th March….. A final Board meeting for 2011, the AGM   and the first Board meeting for 2012. Steve Betts , the CEO of the ARLRA was awarded Life Membership of the ARLRA and returned as CEO . It was unfortunate that when I was asked at the restructured Board meeting if I was the NSW delegate and I said I was that our Chairman spoke out and said he was despite him agreeing at two separate meetings he and I had had, that I would be the representative and the Board approving of this when I reported on the meetings I had with the Chairman at the February Board meeting. We were ordered by the Acting Chairman of the ARLRA, Graham Turnbull of the CRLRA to leave the meeting and sort it out. Following discussion I returned as the representative.

S.Betts spoke as CEO of the ARLRA re the behaviour of C.Ward at the meeting. He said the conflict between the Chairman and the Executive Officer was very disappointing and that, as a Life Member of the NSWRLRA he was disgusted by the behaviour of the Chairman..

Attended on 3rd April. Chairman to report.

Attended on 16th April and presented a Graded certificate to Ryan Jackson

On behalf of the ARLRA, travelled to Darwin with Dennis Spagarino on the 19th April where we met with the General Manager of the NTRL , John Mitchell and Board Member Mike Wright to discuss issues relating to refereeing in the Territory. On Saturday 20th April viewed eight games of Rugby League commencing at 9.30 a.m and concluding at 8.30p.m ranging from Under 13’s to A Grade. Reports on all referees officiating were written and post game debriefs were conducted. Returned to Sydney via Brisbane leaving Darwin at 1.20 a.m on Sunday morning.

Attended on the 2nd May. Thanks to D.Keen and D.Briscoe for organising post training refreshments.

Attended Preliminary Finals and Grand

Finals at Western Weekender Stadium on the 29th April and 5thMay.

Participated in the Bowls Day held on the 6th May at Leichardt Bowling Club. Great day, well organised and attended. Referees won both trophies against Asquith and Leichardt Bowling Clubs.


Acceptance of Report: Adoption B.Gately Moved, Seconded J.O’Sullivan.. Carried

Director of Referee Development : Mr Greg McCallum



Due Date

  • No Report

Chairman indicated that Expressions of Interest would be sought for a replacement.


Acceptance of Report: Moved Seconded. Carried

Director of Finance : Mr Jimmy Oliveira



Due Date

  • Administration and C & D Grants











































































  • Junior Representative Squad Coaches
  • Internal Audit



  • One Community Grant





  • Travel Allowance to Sydney Shield Games
  • Membership Fees

Now available. Responded to timing change as requested by Treasurers at NSWRLRA Conference. Administration Grant designed to assist rather than cover all Administration Costs.

C&D Grant also paid earlier in the season to allow for C&D programmes being in place earlier. Have done this without reducing spending or changing invoicing to follow second instalment of the Grant. Districts to submit C&D Grants for 2011 to assist with 2012 determination.

P.Kalina asked two questions, the first relating to the level of funding to be applied to the fees payable to an Industrial Relations professional. He referred to the Board Minutes Summary of the 29.4.12 where estimates of between $9,500 and $13,000 were cited with no cap to be applied.

J.Oliveira explained that the 2011 fees were being used to fund the I.R professional as there was a hold up in the fee collection and funding was not received until the 26.2.12. P.Kalina stated that he saw the NRL Squad Membership Fees as a reimbursement for 2011 expenditures and, because it is 2011 money, it is misleading. J.Oliveira referred to the “profit” made in 2011 that flows into 2012 expenditure under the accrual method of accounting.

P.Kalina asked that, in relation to the stringent financial controls in place, would J.Oliveira advise the meeting what has been deferred to permit the early payment of Grants. J.Oliveira said that financial controls are in place. All funds are invoiced and receipted and there is a significant change since 2011. He is making use of a Payment Requisition Form and the second Instalment from the League has yet to be received. P.Kalina stated that , as he saw it, normal accounting processes are in place. Chairman, C.Ward said that the controls in place had improved financial management.

D.Keen asked J.Oliveira if his relationship with G.Pollard, Finance Manager at the NSWRL had changed since 2011. J.Oliveira claimed it has strengthened in 2012 and that the change in the Workplace Relations Committee personnel had contributed to this.

F.Leonard spoke to the possibility of changing the Administration Grant for 2013 from a flat $1,500 which has been paid to all Associations since as far back as 2004 to a scaled payment that reflects Association membership. This had been raised with him by Phil Haines of Penrith Association and it had been discussed at the NSWRLRA Conference in the Treasurers’ Session . Moved D.Spagarino, seconded B.Gately that the discussion and a decision be left to a Board Meeting. Carried.

G.Tunks ( St George) suggested that a special meeting of Treasurers be called. J.Oliveira said he would convene a meeting some time in July.


Invoices sought on 7th May.

Meetings held with P.Kalina and P.Filmer who have assisted in improving performance.

G.Pollard advised that it was unsuccessful but forwarded to the Sports Commission. This Grant, if available, was to fund the activities of the Womens’ Development Committee.

Will be paid.

Non Active Member Fees now being collected.


Acceptance of Report: Moved B.Gately Seconded B.Ruttle. Carried

Director of Affiliate Liaison : Mr Doug Keen



Due Date

  • Combined Training Session


  • NRL Skills Sessions


  • North Sydney DRLRA
  • South Sydney DRLRA Launch
  • Central Coast Clinic
  • Holiday Level 1 Course
  • Ref For a Day


  • Drew Oultram Collection




Attended . Great night for Junior

Representative Squad especially.

Being taped and will be forwarded to


Attended 90 Year celebrations


Attended and thanked all involved.

Very successful.

Commenced programme and thanked

NRL Squad for their support.

More Associations, Clubs and

individuals now supporting. $6,183.75

collected to date.



Acceptance of Report: Moved B.Barry , Seconded P.Fitton . Carried.

Director of Member Services : Mr Jon Stone



Due Date

  • Thank You











  • Referees Lawn Bowls Day




  • Gear



  • Presentation Night




  • Drew Oultram

To J.Higgins, J.Farlow ,D.Ryan for barbecue following combined Training . To D.Keen and D.Briscoe for refreshments following last training session for Junior Representative Squad.

All involved in collection for D.Oultram. Sought to set up a Trust Fund but advice from the A.T.O was that it is not reasonable for what was being attempted.

Assisted with gear and bowls polisher. I McCall thanked Association and J.Stone for donation of prizes and support of Bowls Day.

Women’s Shorts designed and were displayed. To be taken to Women’s Committee meeting for approval.

November 3rd at NSW Leagues Club.

Newcastle Association delegate thanked the NSWRLRA for the support given to Drew Oultram. Chairman stated that special thanks go to T.Danks. D.Keen and J.Stone for their organisation. T.Danks singled out D.Keen as giving great support together with Jamie Anderson from the NSWRL. T.Danks requested a letter of thanks be forwarded to Jamie Anderson and NSWRL for permitting the collection to proceed.


Acceptance of Report : Moved, M.Ryan , Seconded. J.O’Sullivan Carried.

Director of Marketing & Communication: Mr George Jankowski



Due Date

  • Attendances


  • Web-Site

Attended a number of Association


A Milestones segment introduced.

There were 16,800 hits during March

and 14,900 during April.


Acceptance of Report: Moved M.Ryan , Seconded J.Stone .Carried.

Chairman : Mr Chris Ward



Due Date

  • Workplace Representation                                           Board approval gained to engage a

                                                                                                   Workplace Relations expert to advise the

                                                                                          Board and advocate for members. This

                                                                                           will address the long standing difficulty

                                                                                           for Active Referees to advocate for them-

                                                                                           selves .Details to be announced shortly.

                                                                                          The benefits of this more professional

                                                                                             approach will flow initially to the NRL

                                                                                            Squad but will benefit all Active members

                                                                                             who reach NRL level and can provide a

                                                                                            model to apply at the NSWRL level.

  • Welfare                                                                               Collection for Drew Oultram co-ordinated

                                                                                            by D.Keen and T.Danks could reach

                                                                                             $16,000. J.Oliveira exploring best type of

                                                                                            Account to   be established for Drew and his

                                                                                             son Oscar.

  • Workers’ Compensation                                                    Dialogue with N.McGuirk and S.Muccillo of

                                                                                             the NRL has resulted in the establishment

                                                                                            of more formal guidelines for referees to be

                                                                                             compensated for training or match related

                                                                                            injuries. Anomalies that existed previously

                                                                                             between the NSWRL and NRL arrangements

                                                                                           are now close to resolution.

  • Member Services                                                              Working closely with Director of Member

                                                                                            Services, Jon Stone, on the possibility of

                                                                                             obtaining direct discounts for members for

                                                                                            goods and servicespurchased. Initial

                                                                                             discussions have been encouraging with a

                                                                                           possibility of one such deal being announced

                                                                                             during 2012.

                                                                                            J.Stone has arranged for the issue of new

                                                                                             shoes to Active Members, Directors and

                                                                                           Coaches with D.Keen assisting in delivery of


  • Sponsorship                                                                      Met with Cameron Dearsley of the NRL to

                                                                                           discuss the possibility of attracting new

                                                                                            sponsors for NSWRL controlled competitions

                                                                                             Cameron was very impressed with the quality and

                                                                                             attractiveness of sponsorship documentation

                                                                                             prepared by J.Oliveira. Anticipating announc-

                                                                                             ement of a new sponsorship during 2012..


Acceptance of Report : Moved: M.Ryan  , Seconded J.Oliveira. Carried



General Business

  1. F.Leonard welcomed Robert Culkin, second oldest Non Active referee , to the meeting..
  2. T.Danks announced the grading of Brendan Lucas as a Touch Judge.He was presented with a metal badge and a copy of The Constitution by the Chairman and welcomed into the Association.
  3. J.Oliveira thanked A. Devcich and T.Archer for their assistance with an MOU document that will be used with the NRL and assist in revision of the NSWRLRA document for 2013. Reminded Associations re responsibilites regarding placing membership data on the National Data base.

Question raised by P. Parnaby of Balmain Association re search details for player/referees and was advised by J.Oliveira as to the process.

     4. S. Betts referred to Correspondence Items 2812,2912,3012 and 3212, (in) and Items 1225,

         1226 from Correspondence Out. He chronologically worked through excerpts from these items

         as they related to the perceptions created in the Chairman’s e-mail to selected members , in

         the first instance, and to all members , after editing, of a second version of “ A View from the

         Chair” which led to a threat of refusal by Presenters of a CMO Course to withdraw their

         services. Following assertions made by S.Betts the Chairman responded with his interpretation

         of events. He apologised for the confusion the errors in punctuation caused and stated that he

         was not casting aspersions. The CMO Course proceeded after intervention by Deputy

         Chairperson, G.McCallum who gave an assurance that the NSWRLRA supported the ARLRA.

         M.Dunn spoke re a question he had directed to C.Ward to which there was no response.

       C.Ward apologised to M.Dunn.

     5. T.Danks stated that he was disturbed over comments in ‘A View from The Chair” forwarded to

         selected members in March ,under the heading of “ What You Don’t Want”’ He was

         particularly incensed by a reference to “cosy relationships”, and perceptions gained from

         members the Chairman had spoken to. T.Danks addressed the issues of expenditure on

         travel, entertainment and Presentation Evenings under his Chairmanship challenging the

         perceptions that had been alluded to in conversations involving the Chairman and stated that

         these perceptions should have been fully investigated and clarified prior to anything being

         placed in print.

         S.Betts expressed grave concern re members perceptions not being checked prior to the

         release of a statement by the Chairman.

         L.Bugden asked where the perceptions were coming from to which the Chairman replied, “The


         B.Ruttle asked if perceptions had come from referees who had left the Association who

        consider themselves elite. G.Badger took exception to this comment and was supported by

         D.Keen who stated that , if the comment referred to members of the NRL Squad , they do a

         great deal of work for and on behalf of the Association outside their refereeing duties. S.Betts

         supported D.Keen saying he felt B.Ruttle didn’t intend derision. B.Ruttle apologised to

         G.Badger for his comment.

     6. B.Barry asked G.McCallum for the reasons for his resignation as Director of Referee

         Development. G.McCallum asked the Executive Officer to read his letter of resignation and he

         then spoke in support of it. The bottom line was that he could no longer work with Chairman,


         M.Ryan spoke of the need to air conflicting views and that it was difficult to draw conclusions.

         He urged the members to respect the decision of the Annual General Meeting which was to

         install C.Ward as Chairman and that he supported the objectives the Chairman had elected to


     7. P.Kalina addressed five issues where he believed the Chairman had acted inappropriately as

           Chairman  and/or had acted out of self-interest :- (i) Failed to follow the procedure for

           despatch of Association Correspondence.(ii) Statements made in “A View from the Chair” (8th

           March) re “gender specific issues and concerns” in relation to CMO courses and the reaction

           to this from the Course Presenters and the CEO of the ARLRA (iii) Conduct at the ARLRA

           Annual General Meeting where he publicly debated with the Executive Officer as to who was

           to be the NSWRLRA delegate to the ARLRA after agreeing on two occasions prior to the

           meeting that it would be the Executive Officer and this was approved by the Board of the

           NSWRLRA (iv) Calling an Association member a “liar” at the General Meeting of the 5th March

           2012 ( v) Attempting to have Sections of Board Meeting minutes deleted.

           P.Kalina moved a motion of no confidence in the Chairman , seconded by M.Dunn. The

           Chairman stated that there was nothing in the Constitution regarding a No Confidence motion

           and that only a Special Resolution could remove a Director .S.Betts moved dissention from the

           Chairman’s ruling. D.Spagarino supported this motion stating that if a motion is moved and

           seconded, , regardless as to what it refers to , it has to be put to the meeting otherwise it is

           pointless conducting a meeting. After consulting with the Executive Officer the Chairman

           asked S.Betts if he would withdraw his motion of dissent and allow the motion

           moved by P.Kalina to be debated. S.Betts agreed to this request and the motion was then


           The motion was put to a secret ballot on a motion moved by D.Spagarino ,seconded by

           B.Gately and carried. The result of the ballot was that the motion was carried . It was

           moved by B.Barry, seconded P.Fitton that the ballot papers be destroyed. Carried.

           The Chairman then informed the meeting that he would not step down from the position of

           Chairman. J.O’Sullivan and M.Dunn then offered the Chairman some advice as to the conduct

           they believed the members expected from him in the future.

     8. Executive Officer, F.Leonard, congratulated referees appointed to the Anzac Test match, the

           City v Country Fixture and to the Finals of the H.Matthews and S.G Ball competitions. This

           was carried by acclamation.

           Meeting closed at 9.20 p.m

         Next Meeting: Monday July, 2nd 2012



Read More Like This

Vale Jack Danzey

It is with great sadness to report that one of our Association’s greats Jack Danzey #634 has passed away. Jack…


What are you looking for?