NEBRA Officials Policies

Overview of Policies for NEBRA Officials

USA Cycling Officials have been a great asset in managing the sporting aspects of New England Cycling for many year. Thank you.

As we strive to lessen the gap between information, expectations and requirements that always exist, NEBRA wants to create an overview document that helps guide you as officials, and equally our many race directors in working with each other and what we expect from each other.

USA Cycling Officials are governed by USA Cycling Policy V, the Officials Code of Conduct (https://www.usacycling.org/about-us/governance/policy-v) and USA Cycling Officials Social Media Guidelines (https://www.usacycling.org/about-us/governance/officials-social-media-guidelines)

You are likely very familiar with these, but please take the time to review and see if there are items that you want to reinforce in your practice in being great professionals to our cycling community. For those that are Chief Referees, it is good to be solid on how you lead your crew as well as how you convey those expectation to the rest of your crew as a good leader does.

Additionally this document will outline a few key norms NEBRA has established for Officials practices for working in the New England Region. Following the general guidelines are specific policies for the New England Region as well as explanations of why those policies are in effect.

General NEBRA Officials Expectations

Officials lead by example and create confidence in their roles by mastering the rules regulations and policies of cycling as well as the mechanics necessary to enforce the rules. Officials that exercise authority in an impartial, firm and controlled manner display control and courtesy at all times to all involved with the sport. NEBRA respects the rights and worth of every person regardless of their race, creed, color, religion, age, sexual orientation, physical handicap, or national origin. As great officials, you are our representatives with this message.

Officials work with each other, the Local Association and USA Cycling in a constructive and cooperative manner. In order to reinforce that process, Officials assigned to an event respect the “chain of command” for the officiating positions of that event, supporting their colleagues as they would expect to be supported.

Officials are punctual and professional in the fulfillment of all obligations, before during and after the event. This includes the acknowledgment of assignments and prompt replies to event related emails in order to support those that manage the assignments. For Chief Referees the Post-Event paperwork is completed as quickly as possible, ideally within 72 hours of the end of the event. Doing so provides great customer service and assures any issues are dealt with promptly and allows Race Directors to manage their final paperwork.

Officiating takes special skills and preparation which are often under-appreciated. Officials prepare themselves for work both physically and mentally, dress neatly and appropriately, and they can comport themselves in a manner consistent with the high standards of the profession. In order to reinforce their neutrality, Officials are conscious of clothing and gear that may have team, club or event logos/sponsor logos visible and try to minimize the use of such clothing or equipment.

Officials shall maintain an ethical approach while participating in all forms of social media, forums, chat rooms etc. As officials, we experience a higher level of scrutiny and regardless of being private individuals, we are recognized and often confused for being the spokespersons of NEBRA and USA Cycling. USA Cycling’s Social Media Policy is designed to give guidance and avoid creation of problems that are so easily avoidable. As officials are mindful that their conduct influences the attitudes and perceptions that the participants and public hold for their profession, they uphold the dignity of their profession in all their interactions.

NEBRA Specific Policies for Officials Working in New England

Overnight Housing for Officials Policy.

What the Policy is:

Since events in NE are reasonably close to our Officials in terms of travel our single day Event Directors don’t provide pre or post event housing for race officials. When submitting race assignment requests officials should take into consideration the event schedule, potential travel time etc.

In unusual circumstances (such as a lack of available local officials) exceptions to this policy may be made in consultation with the Event Director, NEBRA Administrator and/or NEBRA Officials Assignors.

For multi day events, when housing is needed, Event Directors are responsible for providing accommodations. We ask they provide double occupancy accommodation between event days. Again, discussing and coming to an agreement about housing needs should be done as soon as possible as discussed above. Post event housing should be considered an exception, needed only in rare circumstances and again, arranged and agreed upon well in advance.

Why we have the Policy:

Event directors should have as much advance notice of fees as possible. Communicating and agreeing on the proper needs for housing as quickly as possible creates confidence in the management of fees and increases the appreciation for a well managed event. A hotel demand at the last minute is unprofessional and it creates unnecessary stress for all involved. For excess fee outside of the standard officials daily fee and mileage (such as a hotel room) *must* be accompanied with the receipt(s) as would be required for reimbursement of any business expense.

Officials Communication with Event Director Policy

What the Policy is:

To create a strong relationship of trust between the Event Director and the assigned officials, the point of contact between an Event Director and the officiating crew is always the assigned Chief Referee. In order for the Chief Referee to communicate clearly and effectively, other officials on the event crew that need to communicate with the Event Director it should go through the events Chief Referee. Communicating in this manner demonstrates the required chain of command in the assigned officiating crew.

Why we have the Policy:

Communication between USA Cycling officials on an event crew and the Event Director always funnels through the Chief Referee. Individual officials never initiate direct contact with an Event Director- the Event Director is then always clear on who to talk to and only has two points of contact necessary- the Chief Referee and NEBRA. This chain of command in communication also clearly allows the Chief Referee to hear and understand the needs of her/his crew, such as motorcycle or vehicle insurance. Creating a miscommunication by leaving the Chief Referee out of the loop, sets that person up to fail. Remember our first comments on professionalism.

Officials Arrival Time Policy

What the Policy is:

Officials Assigned to an event should arrive no later than one hour prior to the first race start of the day, a standard observed around the country. Any problems or unforeseen delays should be communicated as quickly as possible to the Chief Referee. Things happen and people can adapt, but communication is key. More than an occasional problem simply means it is becoming a habit.

Why we have the Policy:

Officials know that their best work is done because everything has been checked and adequate time to prepare has been ensured. Therefore, being on site with adequate time to check in with the Chief Referee regarding specific assignments and duties, and becoming familiar with the event. This assures they are prepared for the start of the work day.

Club/Volunteer Officials Policy

What the Policy is:

Since great officials demonstrate clear impartiality, Club Officials / Volunteer officials may request assignments at events as either Assistant Judges or Assistant Referees. To demonstrate this to the race participants, the Chief Referee and Chief Judge for any event will always be assigned by NEBRA.

Why we have the Policy:

In an effort to reduce costs to event directors NEBRA encourages the use of club/volunteer officials for certain roles. In keeping with USA Cycling Policy V, only subordinate roles such as Assistant Judges or Assistant Referees are eligible so that the impartiality of the officiating crew is not impacted.

Officials Assignment Change Policy

What the Policy is:

If an Official assigned to an event is unable to honor that assignment, it is their responsibility to contact both the Chief Referee and the Officials Coordinators (assignments@nebra.us) as soon as possible. Individual officials should not to attempt to find their own replacement.

Why we have the Policy:

There are many factors that go into making an assignment and individual Officials may or may not be aware of everything under consideration. For a fair and consistent assignment process for both Officials and Event Directors changes or replacements should go through NEBRA’s assignors.