Message from the District Director
By Carlos Muñoz
The ACBL Board just concluded its spring meetings looking forward to a probable return to FTF bridge beginning in the third quarter. As of now, Regionals are projected for the fourth quarter, but state and local authorities appear to be loosening restrictions and adult vaccinations may be completed by June, allowing clubs and sectionals to resume during the summer, and possibly creating demand for Regionals as early as September.
2020 financials show a gain of about $2.7 million, more than double the total for 2019, thanks to the rapid adjustment to the COVID–19 pandemic and enthusiasm for online bridge. A "clean" audit was completed last week.
The meetings were focused on:
1. Organizational issues (principally By–Law and Codification revisions) resulting from the reorganization approved last year;
2. Review of the substantially increased volume of Appeals and Charges activity due to online ethical charges; and
3. Focus on the post–pandemic future of online and FTF bridge.
As you will have observed from the latest ACBL Bulletin, a great deal of effort was expended in orchestrating the joint ACBL and BBO response to the pandemic, and the ACBL Strategic Committee picked up the ball to lead vigorous discussion on the issues that the Board and management will need to address in the months ahead, including:
How to motivate FTF participation;
A likely decline in the number of clubs; and
The need to mitigate risk for NABCs and Regionals over at least the year ahead.
Management is working on development of criteria governing the earliest FTF tournaments, which will need to be handled on a case–to–case basis.
Your District Board will be meeting in April to address our share of the same issues, and hopefully to plan to work with the ACBL for a successful return to tournament bridge in Danbury in October. We hope to see you there!
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