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Hearings and Appeals

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Article 10 - Other Protest Procedures, Hearings and Appeals 
Make-up and procedures for District/Division Disciplinary Board Committees and Youth Division Hearings and Appeals Committee. 

A. In order to best comply with the requirements of the PA West Constitution, the following rules of competition shall reflect the procedures to be followed for Hearings and Appeals;
B. All decisions rendered by the Youth Board Hearings and Appeals Committee shall be confirmed by a simple majority vote at the next regularly scheduled Youth Board meeting. All decisions rendered by said Committee become effective upon notification of all parties involved except in cases involving disciplinary action; in these instances the decision does not become effective until after the Youth Board confirmation of such decisions. The Youth Board simple majority confirmation vote for non-disciplinary decisions can take place after said decision has become effective.
C. Each geographic District and each playing Division (e.g., Division I, Girls, Classic League, and others which may be established) shall have a Disciplinary Board Committee Chairperson who shall be responsible for receiving the periodic reports of red and yellow card infractions for players in their District/Division, convening a committee to provide a hearing for any discipline invoked under Article 5 or further review the probationary status of any player, coach or team earlier determined. The Disciplinary Committee is further authorized to otherwise review the conduct of any player, coach, team, or club in said District/Division to ensure compliance with applicable rules and regulations and acceptable sportsmanship and gentlemanly conduct standards. Said Disciplinary Board Committees are empowered to render appropriate penalties or sanctions. While a hearing should occur within 30 days of the triggering reason for the discipline, reasonable efforts shall be undertaken to provide a hearing within 15 days of the invoking of any suspension unless said District/Division wishes to use a scheduled monthly Disciplinary Committee meeting for purposes of said hearing. The Disciplinary Board shall attempt to hold a hearing and render a ruling before the expiration of a suspension so invoked, but unless as otherwise provided (e.g., Section 5.2 G, supra), the failure to render a ruling before the expiration of the suspension does not abrogate the suspension. Hearings held at PA West sponsored Tournaments may be held with verbal notice 
D. If a player or coach wishes to appeal a District/Division Disciplinary Board disposition or if they are dissatisfied with an action or inaction of PA West as it affects their playing status or being sanctioned /approved for play or travel and wish to protest this, they may do so by maintaining an Appeal to the Youth Division Hearings and Appeals Committee pursuant to the PA West Bylaws (see Youth Division Organizational Rules, Chapter 27, and Chapter 7, "Appeals"). The following process is to be followed: 

1. If an appeal from a disciplinary action, the Appeal must occur in writing within ten (10) days of receipt of the District/Division Disciplinary Board findings. The Appeal must be sent certified mail to the PA West State Office (with a $150.00 check from the club) and by certified and regular mail to the Youth Board Hearings and Appeals Chairperson (with copy of check sent to PA West State Office); the sender shall also obtain a date-stamped "Proof of Mailing" from the U.S. Post Office and maintain the same for review. A detailed statement as to the basis for the Appeal shall be submitted, signed by an appropriate official of the appellant club. The Hearings and Appeals Chairperson shall review the Appeal, be authorized to conduct fact-finding by reviewing the matter with any of the parties, District, Division, or otherwise, and upon confirming a legitimate Appeal exists and has been properly filed, the Hearings and Appeals Committee will be convened to review the Appeal being taken from the action of the District/Division.
2. If a protest or appeal is being made on a matter not involving action of a District/Division Disciplinary Board, the appellant is first to contact the Youth Board President to determine if this is a matter properly reviewable by the Youth Division. If so, the President may refer the matter to the Hearings and Appeals Committee Chairperson for appropriate fact-finding (including, if necessary, the convening of the  Hearings and Appeals Committee to include the District/Division Director for the  team(s) in question) and ruling, or the President may refer the matter to the Youth  Board of Directors for review, or the President may take such action as may be  appropriate. If the matter is to be reviewed by the Youth Board Hearings and Appeals Committee or the Youth Board of Directors the same procedures must be followed in the taking of the Appeal as set forth above in subparagraph "1" with the addition that the Youth Board President is to be copied on the Appeal (by regular mail) and 12 copies of all statements, facts and arguments for consideration shall be submitted to the State Office with the Appeal for distribution.
3. If an Appeal is taken from the Hearings and Appeals Committee to the Youth Board of Directors, this must occur in writing within ten (10) days of receipt of hearing findings. No further appeal fee must be paid, but the Board of Directors may overturn the decision of the Hearings and Appeals Committee only by a three-quarters vote of the total voting members present of the Board of Directors.
4. The next level of appeal shall be to the USSF by completing a Notice of Appeal in accordance to USSF procedures (currently USSF Bylaw 705) providing for the party to complete a USSF Notice of Appeal with appeal fee to be submitted within ten (10) days of receipt of the decision rendered by the Amateur or Youth Divisions or Referee Committee or other PA West final decision. The Federation's Appeals Committee has the jurisdiction to approve, modify or reverse decisions.
5. The Youth Division procedures for the taking, hearing and disposition of Appeals are implemented to provide the most convenient forum in which to convene a disciplinary hearing and shall serve to satisfy the Youth Division Organizational Rules embodied in the PA West Constitution,  particularly Chapter 27, "Hearings and Appeals Committee," especially insofar as they set forth provisions of the Youth Division (allowed under PA West Bylaws, Chapter 7, "Appeals, Grievances and Disputes") as  to how the Hearings and Appeals Committee/Board shall be composed and allowing periodic disciplinary hearings in each District/Division/League.
6. In the event any District/Division/League is believed by a player, coach, team or club not to be providing a proper and timely disciplinary hearing, the aggrieved shall contact the District /Division/League Director and/or the Youth Division Hearings and Appeals Chairman, who shall  rectify the situation by expeditiously convening a proper District/Division/League Disciplinary Board hearing or referring the matter directly to the Youth Division Hearings and Appeals Committee (in which event no $150.00 appeal fee need be paid for this stage of review).
The composition of a District/Division Disciplinary Board shall be determined by the Disciplinary Board Chairperson in each District/Division with the advice of the District/Division Director; the members of the Disciplinary Board shall serve either by special appointment for a given case or date of hearing, or may be generally appointed until replaced. The composition of a Youth Division Hearings and Appeals Committee may include any members appointed by the Hearings  and Appeals Committee Chairman, who shall seek the advice of the District/Division/League Director involved, but the final selection of Committee members shall be that of the Hearings and Appeals Committee Chairman. The Hearings and Appeals Committee review/hearing need not be chaired by the Hearings and Appeals Committee Chairperson but shall report to the Hearings and Appeals Committee chairperson.