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BLL COVID-19 FAQ

How Benicia Little League is Responding to the Pandemic
 

Updated 4/2/2021

The Benicia Little League Board is actively monitoring guidance around the coronavirus from the state, Solano County, City of Benicia, Little League International, and the CDC. The following frequently asked questions details our current response to the COVID-19 situation and will be updated with new information as it becomes available.

City of Benicia-Approved Health & Safety Plan


WHAT IS THE CURRENT STATE OF THE 2021 SPRING SEASON?
Based on the current health guidance from the State of California, the 2021 spring season is being planned as if we will play with a delayed start. Registration will be open, however we are not charging any fees and will be waitlisting all players. This will allow us to organize volunteers, coaches and teams while we wait. If/when the fields do become available, we will remove all players from waitlist and charge families the registration fee. 

WHAT STEPS IS THE LEAGUE TAKING TO ENSURE THE SAFETY OF ITS PLAYERS AND VOLUNTEERS?
Benicia Little League is developing a COVID-19 Return to Play Protocol which will soon be available on our website once reviewed and approved by the Board, County and City. It will include guidance around the use of shared equipment, sanitization, face coverings and modified practices to adhere to social distancing requirements. All participants must review and be familiar with and adhere to the protocols. In addition, training sessions will be held for all volunteers and participants. This protocol will outline policies for practices and games.

MASKS MUST BE WORN AT ALL TIMES
     - BY ALL PLAYERS WHEN APPROACHING/EXITING THE FIELD, WAITING FOR INSTRUCTION OR IN SOCIALLY-DISTANCED DUGOUT AREAS.
     - VOLUNTEERS (MANAGERS, COACHES, SCOREKEEPERS, FIELD MAINTENANCE, UMPIRES, ETC.)
     - PARENTS/GUARDIANS WHEN DROPPING OFF/PICKING UP THEIR PLAYER

Mask-wearing is optional ONLY when the player is on the field and distanced from other players and coaches.


WHEN WILL GAMES BE ALLOWED?
The State considers baseball to be an outdoor moderate contact sport and has assigned it the second lowest risk level for youth recreational activities. As a result, recently released guidance indicates baseball games can be played in Solano County when the county returns to the RED TIER according to the state’s tiered system of COVID test positivity and case rate. It is possible that the county does not return to the red tier before the end of the 2021 spring season. The link to the current state guidance can be found here.

WHAT ABOUT THE CHALLENGER DIVISION?
Our Challenger division typically requires more people on the field (i.e. buddies, parents) than are allowed under current guidance. The status of the Challenger division is still to be determined.

WILL THERE BE EVALUATIONS AND A DRAFT?
The league is examining all alternatives to traditional player evaluations. We are planning as if games will be played, so our competitive divisions need to have balanced teams through a draft process.The draft for 2021 Minors, Majors, Intermediate and Juniors Divisions have taken place and teams have been formed.

WHEN WILL THE SEASON START?
Practice for all divisions will start the week of April 5, 2021. Games for Tee Ball and Farms will begin April 17 and Minor/Major Games will begin April 24.

IF I WANT TO VOLUNTEER, DO I NEED TO FILL OUT A VOLUNTEER FORM?
Yes, however, this will be the first year the entire volunteer application and background check process is 100% online. Make sure anyone who is volunteering has an up-to-date profile within your account AND you have selected the volunteer role during the registration process. Our Safety Officer will process your application and you will be emailed a link from J.D. Palatine (JDP). You will have a short period of time to fill out the background check info and submit for clearance.


WILL GAMES OR PRACTICES BE PLAYED OVER SPRING BREAK AND MEMORIAL DAY?
Yes. Given the shortened season, we will have games and practices during BUSD spring break and the weekend of Memorial Day.

WHEN WILL THE SEASON END?
For the 2021 season, the last day of the regular season will take place June 5. The week of June 7 will be the playoff tournament for the Minor and Major Divisions.

WILL WE GET A REFUND IF GAMES ARE NOT PLAYED?
We will not be charging fees until we know, to the best of our knowledge, the season will start. We will not be offering a partial refund in the unfortunate case that no games are able to be played. Most of the seasonal costs are allocated and spent well before teams are formed and these costs are non-refundable to the league. The league must also receive enough revenue this spring to offset its ongoing costs.

WILL WE GET A REFUND IF THE SEASON IS CANCELED?
We aim to maintain as much flexibility as possible with regards to the start date of the season. In the event the season is canceled due to State, County, and City health guidelines, wildfires, unhealthy air quality or other factors out of the control of Benicia Little League, a refund will not be provided.

HOW DO YOU DETERMINE THE REGISTRATION FEES?
Spring is baseball’s primary season, and thus the fees need to cover both the league’s seasonal costs as well as the ongoing costs of running the league. Your registration fees can be broken down as:

Seasonal Expenses
• Uniform (jersey or t-shirt, socks, hat, pants, coach hats)
• All Star Uniforms (jersey or t-shirt, socks, hat, pants, coach shirt and hats)
• Pictures
• Trophies/medals
• Equipment and balls
• Little League International fees
• District 53 fees
• Insurance
• Cost of background checks
• Field access from the City of Benicia and BUSD
• Umpire service
• Opening and Closing ceremonies

Ongoing Expenses
• Website maintenance
• Email list maintenance
• Accounting costs
• Tax filing costs

WHAT IS THE REFUND POLICY?
A formal request must be sent to [email protected] in the event a player cancellation is required.

- If the player withdraws or quits during the waitlist period, no fees will be charged
- If the player withdraws or quits AFTER the registration fee has been charged but BEFORE uniforms are distributed and/or the start of the first game, 75% of the registration fee will be refunded
- If the player withdraws or quits AFTER their uniform was distributed and/or the first game take place, NO refund will be provided.


WHAT WILL HAPPEN TO PICTURE DAY?
We will not have team picture day for the Spring 2021 season.

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