Courtesy of Dave Teixeira of Dave.ca
Today the British Columbia Government is introducing Legislation (Bill 50) to form an Athletic Commission to regulate combat sports Mixed Martial Arts (MMA), Boxing, Kickboxing, etc. – in the Province.
After years of working with various stakeholders including Athletic Commissions, all levels of Governments, media, fans, combat sports companies, etc this is a welcomed move.
In October 2010 I said in a 24 Hours interview: “I think it’s [the formation of a Provincial Athletic Commission] going to happen within two years. Promoters want to be professional, and to do it they have to pay the taxes, fees and have protection from the government.”
This Legislation replaces local commissions with a single Provincial body; ensures participant safety is paramount; codifies and unifies the rules of the sports; and has consistency with fees, taxes, etc.
A Provincial Athletic Commission under the Ministry of Community, Sport and Cultural Development will allow large scale MMA organizations like Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) to work with a professionally run Commission who are not held to the moral whims of unelected staffers (*cough* City of Vancouver *cough*).
STORY CONTINUES TO DEVELOP – UPDATES THROUGHOUT THE DAY
Athletic Commissioner Act introduced in the House
VICTORIA – The Province is taking steps to establish a Provincial Athletic Commissioner, who would regulate and supervise professional contests such as boxing, kick-boxing and mixed martial arts.
Community, Sport and Cultural Development Minister Ida Chong introduced Bill 50 – Athletic Commissioner Act – in the legislature today
The proposed act would establish a consistent framework to oversee the conduct of these professional events throughout the province. This legislation would not apply to amateur contests.
The commissioner’s primary focus would be to ensure the safety of competitors and officials.
If local governments do not want such contests to take place in their communities, they would be able to prohibit these events by passing a bylaw.
Ida Chong, Minister of Community, Sport and Cultural Development –
“The benefit of having a provincial athletic commissioner would be that every professional contest would be subject to the same rules and regulations, whether it was being held in Vancouver, Nanaimo or Vernon.”
“Since sports such as kick-boxing and mixed martial arts are very popular and are taking place without a consistent regulatory framework, it makes sense to be proactive about creating this position to increase the safety of athletes and officials, as well as to provide certainty for communities and the industry.”
- The role of the commissioner would be to oversee the conduct of professional contests such as boxing, kick-boxing and mixed martial arts throughout the province, with a key focus on the safety of competitors and officials.
- The key duties of the commissioner would be to:
- Ensure a consistent standard of qualifications and safety protocols for all participants and officials through a uniform licensing and permitting framework.
- Ensure compliance with the proposed act and its regulations, through the use of suspension or cancellation of licences and event permits, as well as administrative penalties.
- The Community Charter and the Vancouver Charter now provide for the establishment of local athletic commissions to authorize public events. Such athletic commissions may regulate professional boxing and similar activities, contests and exhibitions.
- At least nine B.C. municipalities currently have athletic commissions. If the Province establishes an athletic commissioner, both the Community Charter and Vancouver Charter will be amended to remove the authority to create local commissions.
|Contact:||Jeff Rud Communications DirectorMinistry of Community, Sport and Cultural Development250 208-4028|
Keep it locked on MMASucka.com as more news comes out about this proposed bill.