Hands Off My Booster Club

It’s hard to think of a better example of federal overreach in the area of Title IX than the regulation of athletic booster clubs. Over the past few years, we’ve seen plenty of examples of parents being forced to leap through legal hoops to satisfy the folks in Washington. Just this morning, I read a story from Pennsylvania that made my head hurt:

In its first draft, the proposed policy raised ire from various booster club members who said policy mandates – such as annual audits of club finances by a certified public accountant – would be too costly for the fundraising clubs to bear.

To satisfy Title IX requirements, the school board and the clubs that support extracurricular events and athletics, the board asked Athletic Director Fred Barletta to meet with representatives of every district-associated booster club to craft a mutually acceptable policy.

That document, however, did not meet board desires or Title IX requirements because it lacked financial disclosures and a provision to provide the board with club bylaws and membership, Yenkevich said.

At the conclusion of Thursday’s board meeting, Yenkevich moved to approve the original version of the policy, amended to replace the professional audit with an annual financial disclosure. The policy would also require club members to be familiar with applicable state laws and to provide the district with information on club bylaws, officers and planned fundraisers.

This is just the sort of nonsense that ought to be stopped right now. Say you’re a parent who just wants to help raise money for your kid’s athletic team. Now, instead of spending your time raising money through bake sales and such, you have to worry about hiring accountants and drawing up bylaws for your organization. While garbage like this might make sense in Washington, it doesn’t make a heck of a lot of sense once you get out into the real world.

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