WARNING: Boring post ALERT…….and Democratic proposal.

There has been some grousing with regards to the KVKL Board and whether (or not) it equally represents ALL the teams in the league.  Let’s briefly look at the constitution of the board:  Adina Scanland, Mad Greek, John Brown Div.  Curtis McCoy, Rangelife, William S. Burroughs Div.  Deron Belt, Jayhawk Guttering, JB Div.  Josh Hunt, Sacred Sword, WSB Div.  Leslie Smith, Free State, JB Div.  Nick Lerner, Blue Collar, WSB Div. Phil Mitchell, Love Garden, WSB Div.

Quick count – WSB representatives 4, JB representatives 3, Langston Hughes Div. 0, and James Naismith Div. 0.  I certainly could see how the JN’s and LH’s feel inadequately represented.  Does this need to be an acutely democratic process?  Maybe, maybe not.  So far, many folks have been loathe to shower praise upon the Board for it’s perceived bumblings.  This is inescapable.  In any representative democracy, making everyone happy is by it’s inherent nature unlikely.

With 28 active teams and several waiting to get in, a project of this magnitude requires a modicum of preparation and organization.  Last year, we applied for and received a not-for-profit status.  We did this partly to absolve the Board from liability of an injury to any KVKL participant (while playing kickball).  More importantly, we wanted to use the KVKL as a vehicle for kickball, charitable giving, and promote community awareness.  The 2007 KVKL was unable to do much charitable work (other than what individual’s contributed) because of tight finances.  This year our outlook for charitable giving is more optimistic.  Further, we have developed a working relationship with the East Lawrence Neighborhood Association (concessions) and are currently working on a league-wide recycling program.

Back to the proposal.  Here is a possible, and hastily put together format (I can’t claim ownership to this entire proposal):  28 teams, each with a captain and an assistant captain gives us 56 delegates, or 56 votes.  Each division has 7 teams or 14 votes.    This makes each division more intimately involved with the league and directly a part of the process.  Or, a democratic nightmare.  It gives cpts and assistant cpts much more influence.  This also encourages, if desired, more communication between teams off field.  Further, a division (not just one team) can request a league wide vote (56) on a referendum* issue with a majority vote within their respective division.  I also propose that each division elect it’s own representative to the commission starting in 2009.  That’s only 4 you say?   The other 3 would come from the existing board.  It doesn’t make sense to do this at the end of 2008, because we will not know the 2009 teams until the spring of ’09.  It is messy, but doable with tons of work.

There are many potential problems (some of those I foresee).  How do we arrange the divisions to set up the voting blocks?  Ideally, all this year’s teams would return.  That would simplify this part of the process.  Doesn’t seem likely.  There has been team movement in every year of the league’s existence.  Also, getting 56, 14, or even 7 people together to vote on something is difficult at best (even via e-mail).  Let’s face it, people enjoy complaining more than contributing (though complaining could be construed as participation, I guess).

How would removing members of the current Board affect the league?  Some people on the Board have established personal relationships with folks at Lawrence Parks and Rec., neighborhood associations, venues for entertainment/fund-raising, and are otherwise well networked within the city.  Is this nepotism, elitism, and/or cronyism?  Perhaps.  But all these relationships help make this league go.  I do, however, feel the league could absorb these losses IF the next four Board member’s were equally committed.  Regardless, it is essential for the league to have active member participation.  That means you.

Again, a certain amount of vigilance is required to participate in a democracy.  Honestly, I don’t think most people care enough to actively participate.  They’d rather pay their tax-deductible fees and go play on Sundays.  I don’t blame them.  All the glory lies on the fields and not in the doldrums of legislation.  Actual democracy has given way to representative democracy throughout history.  This could give the KVKL a little of both.

Ugh.  My head hurts.  Must…….warn…..others…..

Suggestions?  Comments?  Smears?  Jokes?  Please.  I welcome them all.

*We’ll need to define what a referendum issue is, who runs meetings, removal protocols, what an appropriate protocol would be if not all were in attendance, what the tie-break protocol would be, and much, much more…….

Please rank your top 15 in the comments.