Handicap Changes Affecting Your Club

To: Golf Association of Florida Member Golf Clubs and Facilities

From: Judy Comella - Executive Director, Golf Association of Florida (GAF)
Jim Demick - Executive Director, Florida State Golf Association (FSGA)
Kathy Gordon – Director, Regional Affairs – Southeast Region

Date: October 11, 2017

Re: 2018 USGA Handicap System Revisions

You are receiving this communication because you are a valued member of the Golf Association of Florida (GAF) and have participated in the USGA Handicap System as a part of that membership. The USGA has announced significant changes to the oversight of the USGA Handicap System beginning in 2018 which will have an impact on all golf clubs and facilities in Florida, including GAF clubs. This memo outlines your options for authorization to administer and use the USGA Handicap System going forward.

In January 2018, the USGA will begin a new working collaboration with select state and regional golf associations throughout the United States which will be known as Allied Golf Associations (AGAs). Each AGA will operate within a discrete geographic area and will support the administration and oversight of the USGA Handicap System, USGA Course Rating System, Rules of Golf and Rules of Amateur Status, among their many responsibilities to the game.

The Florida State Golf Association (FSGA) will be the AGA throughout the state of Florida. As such, GAF will continue to serve GAF clubs through the end of the year and will transition its USGA related responsibilities to the FSGA as of January 1, 2018.

If your club would like to be authorized to use the USGA Handicap System in 2018, it has the following options:

1) Become a member of FSGA. You may contact Aaron Skoviera, Director of Handicapping at the FSGA at aaron@fsga.org 813.868.5802 to learn the details of the FSGA’s membership program.

2) Current GAF Type 1 Golf Clubs (golf clubs that are located at a golf course) may apply to the USGA for direct authorization to administer the USGA Handicap System for a single term that will go through December 31, 2018. A GAF club that is approved to become a directly authorized club will have no further right to renew or extend such authorization. Thereafter, each such club will be required to become a member of the FSGA in order to provide a USGA Handicap Index to its members. This transition period is intended to provide time to enable operating adjustments and for each club to establish a mutually agreeable working arrangement with FSGA, as the authorized AGA going forward. GAF clubs that choose to become directly authorized clubs for 2018 will,
when approved, become affiliated with the FSGA for the limited purpose of administrative oversight of the USGA Handicap System.

3) Golfers may consult the definitions of Golf Club Types set forth in the USGA Handicap System for all Golf Club membership options.
Applications for Golf Club direct authorization will be available from the USGA on November 1, 2017. All approved directly authorized Golf Clubs may choose a third-party technology provider to provide handicap computation services, subject to such provider’s compliance with the governance standards of the USGA Handicap System.

On behalf of GAF, it has been a sincere pleasure to serve many of you for years. GAF looks forward to a smooth working transition with the FSGA. On behalf of the FSGA, we look forward to beginning a new relationship with you. Both of us stand prepared to answer your questions and meet your needs during this transition. Please do not hesitate to contact either of us as we move into 2018.

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