The SODA Blog

The official blog of the Sportsplex Operators & Developers Association

Proposed bill would increase penalties for people who attack sports officials in New York !

Long Overdue in New York !
Thanks NY Senator Rich Funke !

Image may contain: 14 people, people standing

Rochester, NY – October 2019

Funke announces legislation to protect sports officials !

                             Assaults of officials to blame for national shortage

Senator Rich Funke (R-C-I, Fairport) was joined by District Attorney Sandra Doorley along with local and statewide advocates in announcing the introduction of legislation to create an enhanced penalty for individuals who assault a sports official. The Bill (S6747) would add officials to a list of professions who already receive protections under the law. Causing a physical injury to an official would become a Class D Felony (carrying a maximum sentence of 7 years in prison) and striking, kicking or shoving an official would become a Class B Misdemeanor (carrying a maximum sentence of 3 months in prison).  

Senator Rich Funke (R-C-I, Fairport) said, “A recent survey of sports officials shows that 13% have been assaulted and 47% have feared for their safety. As someone who spent decades covering sports, it saddens me that disrespect and violence toward officials is being tolerated in our state. Worse still, this bad behavior by a small group of players and fans has led to a shortage of qualified officials that could threaten the ability of our young people to learn the value of competition and good sportsmanship in the future. “

Monroe County District Attorney Sandra Doorley said, “I am honored to join Senator Rich Funke in announcing legislation targeted toward those who assault a sports official. Members of our community should not have to fear for their safety when going to work or their hobbies. Our hope is that the introduction of this legislation will decrease the likelihood of crime against sports officials. I urge the New York State Legislature to support this effort to help promote the safety of family and community sporting events”

Referee Peter McCabe in 2009 Rochester, NY

Dr. Robert Zayas, Executive Director of the New York State Public High School Athletic Association said, The New York State Public High School Athletic Association fully supports Senator Funke’s proposed legislation to protect officials. We want our officials to know they are working in a safe environment and fans will be held responsible for unacceptable behavior.  Without dedicated officials, interscholastic sports in New York would not exist.”

Pete McCabe, sports official and victim of a 2009 assault said, “This bill is a long time coming and needs to pass in New York State.  Many states have this in place and many thanks to Senator Funke for proposing this legislation. In 2009, I was attacked after a football game and almost died from my injuries. In the last few weeks alone, we have had several officials threatened in parking lots of schools and many ejections of participants in sub varsity and youth football games.  There has to be a law in place to stop the actions of people around sporting events. There are many examples nationwide of this and sooner than later an official in this area will be hurt again, or even killed.  This law has to pass and I thank Senator Funke for proposing it.”

Dale Trott, Rochester District Board of Approved Basketball Officials, Rochester said, “We applaud Senator Funke’s efforts to address one of the key issues facing every high school sports official in the state. Our officials work tirelessly to learn and apply the rules of the game appropriately while serving as ambassadors of the sport. Our support will always lie in working with our partners to encourage greater protection of our boys’ basketball officials and the growth of officiating.”

The Senate and Assembly are due to return to session on January 8th and could take up this legislation as soon as that week. Senator Funke is calling for immediate action. “I urge the Governor and the majorities in both houses to support this effort and help me pass this important legislation as soon as possible,” said Senator Rich Funke (R-C-I, Fairport). “Last session we saw swift but ill-conceived action in Albany to make things easier on criminals. This session we ought to begin with this common sense proposal to protect our officials and punish those who seek to assault or intimidate them.”

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

It’s Never To Late To Save Your Program Money !
Check Out Our Insurance Program Today !

* ( 16 Different Amateur Sports ) *

( Officials, Tournaments, & Facilities ) *

1-800-622-7370

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

www.sadlersports.com/soda

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 

“Proudly Serving The USA/Canada 

Since 1981”

www.sportsplexoperators.com

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

“Proudly Serving The USA/Canada 

Since 1981”

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*