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League Bulletin Board: News & Notes for the Quorum

Player registration is concluding and preparations are likely under way to organize player evaluations (tryouts). As your league moves toward the annual selection meeting (player draft) and the 2017 preseason continues, here is some information and other items to keep be aware of.

Access to League Status Information:

As Little League® International continues to develop digital solutions to service its leagues, a status information dashboard has been launched to provide access to background checks, ASAP Plan submission, player/coach data, and charter updates. This dashboard simply asks you to identify the state and district you wish to search, and information is provided in spreadsheet form. Be sure to access the current information by logging into the Little League Data Center and clicking on the 2017 status information dashboard at the top of the page.

Chartering and Insurance Coverage:

Submission of a 2017 charter application ensures that your league has insurance coverage for the coming season. It is important to note that without proper insurance coverage, your league and its officials are not properly covered for any league activities. Liability and Accident Insurance will not be in force for the 2017 season until the league has chartered and paid the premiums in full.

• Be sure that your Board of Directors considers purchasing crime insurance for the piece of minding that comes with knowing you are protecting your league, its players, and volunteers in the event that the unimaginable happens and your league becomes a victim of embezzlement.

Updates and New Information for the Little League® Rules, Regulations, and Policies:

Please review the 2017 changes and revisions to the Little League® Rules, Regulations, and Polices. Note that these updates will be in place and effective for the coming season. Also, 2017 Rulebooks are now available to purchase, with print versions available through LittleLeagueStore.net, and eBook versions available on the Amazon and Apple bookstores.

2017 ASAP Information:

Information and materials to facilitate the 2017 A Safety Awareness Program (ASAP) are currently available online at the Little League website.

As Safety Officers complete the 2017 ASAP plan for their leagues, they are reminded that all safety plans MUST be submitted to Little League International electronically through the Little League Data Center; or mailed to Little League International. No email submissions will be accepted. The deadline for local league ASAP Plan submission is March 31, 2017. Mailed plans are to be send to: Little League® International (539 U.S. Route 15 Highway, Williamsport, Pa., 17701-0485) along with the 2017 Qualified Safety Program Registration form. The deadline for Districts to complete the process regarding the District monetary incentive for early local league participation is Friday, March 10.

Annual Background Checks:

Starting in 2017, a local league within the United States must conduct a nationwide background check utilizing First Advantage or another provider that is comparable to First Advantage in accessing background check records for sex offender registry data and other criminal records. Visit the First Advantage League Registration page to change or update the authorization of the Board member responsible for using First Advantage to conduct the league’s required background checks. In order to make the change/update, the following information is required: league identification number, league name, User ID, user name and email address.

Tee Ball Tuesdays:

Little League® continues to encourage the participation at the program’s youngest division. Leagues are asked to consider chartering Tee Ball, and Little League has continued to enhance its training and educational offerings, including the introduction of Tee Ball Tuesdays.

Little League® to Adopt New USA Baseball Bat Standard in 2018:

Little League Baseball® will have a new bat standard effective on January 1, 2018. All national members of USA Baseball, including Little League®, are being encouraged to adopt this new standard, which was developed by a USA Baseball committee of scientific experts. Little League-approved bats can be used through December 31, 2017, but will not be permitted for any Little League practices or games beginning January 1, 2018, and the current bat regulations will be in effect until then. That includes the moratorium prohibiting the use of all 2 ¼ inch barrel baseball bats constructed with composite material in the barrel, unless approved. Effort to inform your league members that this change will be in effect next season, and that any baseball bat purchased for the 2017 season will not be approved for Little League play in 2018.

Local League Resource Guide:

Please take advantage of the information and direction provided in the 2017 Local League Resource Guide. The Little League® University website also has this information available on the League Officials tab, which you can be found at: Little League Resource Guide. Several pages in the current resource guide have been updated. See the latest information, but visiting LittleLeagueU.org.

League Supply Delivery:

League Supplies will be delivered to each local league that has chartered with Little League for 2017. Inside the League Supplies will be important local league resources such as rulebooks, tee ball information, marketing materials and more. These materials will be delivered to the local League President, and if you have any questions be sure to contact your District Administrator.

Technology Applications Update:

The GameChanger scoring application is now available on the Android operating system, joining the current version available for use on Apple products. The weatherbug.com mobile application will be discontinued at the end of February 2017. Little League® encourages its leagues to use other meteorological websites or apps for weather forecasting and updates.

Tax Exempt Status Reminder:

It is the local league’s responsibility to submit a federal tax return to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). Any non-profit organization that does not file the proper 990 Form with the IRS for three consecutive years automatically loses its federal tax exemption resulting in the organization's income becoming taxable and contributors being unable to report their contributions as tax deductions. This year's filing deadline is February 15, 2017. Please include the League I.D. Number and Employer Identification Number (E.I.N.) on the tax return along with the correct name and address of the current League President. Each separately chartered league, even if operated by the same board, is required to have its own E.I.N. and file a separate return. Forms and instructions are available on the IRS website at www.IRS.gov. The address where the tax return should be filed is: Internal Revenue Service Center -- Ogden, Utah 84201-0027.

It is also the responsibility of each league to furnish Little League Baseball® Incorporated with a copy of your league's annual financial report. This is a requirement of any league enrolled under the Little League Federal Group Tax Exemption and 501(c)(3) organizational status. There is a sample financial statement in the Little League resource guide and on the Little League website. Please be sure your League I.D. Number is noted on the financial statement. If you haven't already done so, please forward a copy of your league's financial statement via email (bbassett@LittleLeague.org) or mail to:

Little League Baseball, Incorporated
539 U.S. Highway 15
P. O. Box 3485
Williamsport, PA 17701-0485