Membership Rules & Regulations
SECTION I: MEMBERSHIP & REGISTRATION
1. Membership in the GFAB is open to all interested persons (except those persons who are suspended by the National Federation (United States Equestrian Federation) by completing an application form with the club. When the application form and membership fees are received, the Membership Secretary will send a membership confirmation card for the current year.
2. The GFAB membership year commences on January 1st of each year. Dues become payable on that date and memberships expire the following December 31st. All members must pay the entire annual dues no matter when they submit their application.
For anyone unable to show a horse due to injury (horse or rider) but still retains the ability to vote
and be engaged in club activities. $20.00
Adult or Junior; includes one (1) horse $35.00
3 individuals (Adult or Junior) -OR- three (3) horse/rider combo $60.00
Additional Horse & Rider Combo (per horse) $ 10.00
Change of Horse Show Name $5.00
Change/Loss of Rider’s Designated Number $10.0
3. A member in good standing (hereafter referred to as member) shall be identified as:
A. A person who is not indebted to GFAB and/or GFAB sponsored event.
B. A person who is not in violation of GFAB Rules and Specifications.
C. A person who is not under suspension by any national show/breed affiliation.
D. A person who has not perpetrated a fraud in the name of GFAB or against GFAB.
4. An Individual membership has one (1) vote. A family membership has one (1) vote. All Board members must be current, active, members of GFAB.
5. Membership of the horse:
A. Registration forms must list the horse’s show name or registered show name.
B. No two horses may carry the same registered name. In case of duplication, the Membership Secretary will notify the owner of the second horse and this owner may pick a new name, or, failing to do so, will be assigned a name by the Membership Secretary. This new name will have to be used on all the GFAB entry forms for the horse's points to count toward any awards. There will be no fee charged for this change.
C. Stallions to be shown by any rider/handler require prior approval by GFAB.
6. Youth are riders who have not reached their 18th birthday as of 01 January of the show year. The age of an individual on 01 January will be maintained throughout the entire year.
7. Points will be accrued by registered Horse & Rider combos, only. For points to accrue where multiple riders are competing with 1 horse, each combination must be registered to accrue points. Points are not based solely on horse.
8. Rider will be able to choose their competition number for the season for $10.00, If no number is chosen, one will be assigned. If Rider loses show number (chosen or assigned), a $10.00 reinstatement fee will be assessed.
9. All registration fees are non-refundable.
10. The GFAB official show season will be from 01 January through 31 December. Only approved shows held within this period will provide riders with points toward year-end awards.
11. Members of GFAB are eligible for discounts (when applicable) on GFAB sponsored events. Not all events will be eligible and no discounts will be applied to past events after membership is received.
SECTION 2: FEES
1. Horse show arena fees are not controlled by GFAB.
2. If a person sends a non-negotiable check to the GFAB that person and his/her horse will not receive points until proper settlement is made and the GFAB is refunded for any fees or service charges. This same ruling applies to non-negotiable checks written to GFAB at sponsored events.
3. There will be a $35.00 service charge for each returned (non-negotiable) check submitted to GFAB.
4. GFAB non-member fees for horse show entries will be $20.
SECTION 3: REFUND POLICY
1. Refunds are given via same method of payment.
2. All credit card processing fees are non-refundable.
3. Post Entry Fees are non-refundable.
4. All-Day fees for Members will not be refunded if you have started showing for the day.
5. Members or non-members are eligible to receive a full refund via same method of payment, if conditions 3a-c are satisfied:
a. Unable to attend show for any reason (non-start)
b. You have prepaid your entry via cash or check
c. Horse has not stepped hooves on show grounds
6. Members or non-members are eligible to receive a partial refund via same method of payment, if you are on show grounds and if the following condition is satisfied:
a. You have paid for individual classes and not an all-day fee.
i. ONLY Registration fees for classes not entered will be refunded.
SECTION 4: POINT ACCUMULATION
1. Riders wishing to receive points at an GFAB show must submit an application for GFAB membership on or prior to the show date. Riders who have not joined GFAB by the date of a show in which they wish to participate must pay a nonmember fee. However, riders may receive points for that show if their membership application, including membership dues, is received by the GFAB Membership Secretary no later than the close of current show. It is the rider's responsibility, not the show manager's responsibility, to submit his or her application and applicable payment to GFAB. The nonmember fee will not be credited toward membership dues.
2. No horse or rider will be credited points until the membership form is completely filled out, signed by the member or guardian, and all dues have been paid. No points will be retroactively applied, even if rider has shown at GFAB sponsored shows prior to membership activation date. It is the responsibility of the owner or leaseholder to make sure GFAB membership requirements have been satisfied.
A. The following rules must be followed for year-end point accumulations:
A. Points may only be earned by GFAB members in good standing.
B. Points will not begin to be accrued until the horse/rider combo is officially registered.
C. A member may ride a non-registered horse. No points will be accrued.
D. A non-member must pay a non-member fee to show. This applies to non-members riding GFAB member and non-member horses.
B. Members are required to register for all shows with the name listed on their GFAB membership card. This rule applies to both the horse's name and the rider's name. For rules on name changes, please See Section I. 6.
C. The point updates will be considered accurate and final thirty (30) days after a recognized show. Following each of the official update time period, all points will be considered accurate and final and no changes may be made.
3. The Membership Secretary will be the point keeper, will maintain the point records of the association and will compute the results of the show year. The Membership Secretary will keep the point book current. Current standings will be available to the members during the show season on the official web- site of GFAB. Current standings are updated within two weeks of previous show, except for Final results, will be announced at the awards banquet.
4. Computation of points:
A. The computation of points mirrors the USHJA point system as follows:
1. 1st place = 10 points
2. 2nd place = 6 points
3. 3rd place = 4 points
4. 4th place = 2 points
5. 5th place = 1 point
6. 6th place = .5 points
B. In addition to these points, each placing will receive 1 point per entry in the class, including those entries that are disqualified. If there is only one entry in the class, 1st place will receive 5 points.
C. All ties will be resolved in favor of the greater number of first place awards.
D. The Membership Secretary will notify all annual award winners prior to the date of the awards banquet.
E. Any GFAB board member may inspect/concur the point book prior to the awards banquet at a convenient time for the point keeper.
F. Consecutive days of a show shall constitute only one show, regardless of how many sections or classes of a division are offered. Multiple championships may be awarded, but for year-end award purposes, this will count as only one show.
G. You must have accumulated a minimum of one (1) point for, and shown and placed at a minimum of three (3) of the five horse shows, in the same class, with the same horse/rider combo, during the year to be eligible for a year-end award.
SECTION 5: YEAR END MEETING & AWARDS
1. Each year following the last GFAB approved show; the Board will schedule an annual meeting/awards dinner. Notification of this event will be e-mailed to each member.
A. Annual awards will be presented to six (6) places in GFAB approved divisions.
B. Special awards as may be defined and directed by the GFAB Board.
C. The Annual Meeting shall be held to discuss and vote on issues pertinent to the operation and direction of the GFAB. (This may include but is not limited to rule changes, director elections, committee reports, fees, horse show standards, penalty assessment, etc.)
D. Voting may be accomplished by e-mailing considerations to all members in good standing prior, during, or after the annual meeting. Members will have two weeks to return their ballot.
E. The banquet will be held sometime before the third Sunday of November and after all shows have been completed.
F. It is the responsibility of the recipient or designated person to pick up his / her award.
SECTION 6: RULES & RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE RIDER
1. Rider conduct, attire & equipment:
A. Cruelty or abuse to a horse by any person at any GFAB show is forbidden. The show management may bar the violator from further participation at the show, and/or cancel that person's membership in the GFAB. The organization considers it cruel to exhaust a horse as demonstrated by a horse exhibiting sourness, tail switching, profuse sweating, soring, refusing to jump, and other signs of exhaustion. The Association shall consider the weather conditions and the horse's physical fitness in its decision. Action and penalties are at the full discretion of the GFAB Board of Directors.
B. After the gate person has called a rider to the ring, a rider has one (1) minute to enter the ring before elimination. Management may permit a rider to compete out of order to minimize delays and in case of class conflicts.
C. All English over fence class riders are required to wear: (1) ASTM-SEI-approved protective headgear with attached harness; and (2) riding boots containing a hard sole and rider’s heel (i.e. knee length English-style boots, jodhpur boots or paddock boots). Tall boots, riding boots with half-chaps are permitted. (3) Breeches (Tan/Natural or Black) or full chaps. (4) Show shirt or collared shirt. No T-shirts or Sweatshirts. (5) Coats are required, but may be waived by the Judge on show day. Clothing should be neat and conservative. A judge may penalize for non-traditional attire.
D. Hair should be neat and worn so the competitor's number shows at all times.
E. No mounted exhibitor may wear or carry an electronic communication device (i.e., cell phone, pager, walkie talkie, etc.) while in the competition ring. T The penalty for violating this rule if observed by the judge may be elimination from the class during which the device was worn or carried. (Exception: a handicapped participant may use electronic devices subject to prior approval by show management.)
F. A judge may disqualify for non-conventional types of bits or nosebands.
G. Martingales are not permitted in Equitation on the flat or under saddle classes according to the USEF rules. Martingales are permitted in classes over obstacles and in the jumping phase of classes requiring both jumping and flat work (i.e.: Hunter Hack). Running martingales are only allowed in ‘Jumper’ classes.
I. Horses should be clean and neat. Braiding is optional. Poorly groomed horse may be penalized by judge.
J. Spurs, crops, or bats are optional, but should be used humanely.
K. Boots or conservative colored bandages on horses are permitted.
SECTION 7: RULES & RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE GFAB
1. Show Responsibilities
A. Qualified medical personnel and suitable medical equipment must be present during all scheduled horse show performances. "Qualified medical personnel" is defined as a person who is currently certified or licensed in their profession. An ambulance must be on the grounds or on call.
B. A Veterinarian must be on call.
C. All horses coming into the state of Montana must have Coggins test and a Health Certificate. GFAB reserves the right to request a copy of the health papers and Coggins.
D. Shows will offer six (6) ribbons in each class.
E. GFAB Board Member will officiate in the capacity of a Steward in the event of a dispute at a local horse show.
A. GFAB will hire knowledgeable horsepersons as judges. (Management must provide the judges with GFAB rules and class descriptions.) GFAB will vary their judges during the show year.
B. Judges must be furnished with cards, which have GFAB Class Specifications and course diagram.
A. All of the fences must be the height stated in the program.
B. The course must be posted one (1) hour before the start of the class.
C. Except in case of bad weather, broken equipment or similar emergency, a course may not be altered except by judge’s ruling. If one or more fences are rendered unusable during a class and no duplicate exists, management may substitute fences that approximate as nearly as possible the originals.
D. No over fences class shall be started one half-hour after sunset unless the area has adequate lighting.
4. Employees & Compensation
A. The officers and directors of this organization shall receive no compensation for their services in those capacities. No person who is an officer or director of this corporation shall be reimbursed for expenses incurred on behalf of this association unless such expenditures are authorized by the Board of Directors.
B. No part of the net earnings of this association shall inure to the benefit of or be distributable to its members, directors, officers, or other person, except that the association shall be authorized and empowered to pay reasonable compensation for services rendered to make payments and distributions in furtherance of the purposes set forth.
C. No Substantial part of the activities of the association shall be the carrying on of propaganda, or otherwise attempting, to influence legislation, and the association shall not participate in, or intervene in (including the publishing or distribution of statement) any political campaign on behalf of any candidates for public office. Not-withstanding any other provision of these bylaws, the association shall not carry on any other activities which are prescribed for associations exempt for federal income taxes under section 501 (c) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1954 (or the corresponding provision of any future Internal Revenue Code) or which are proscribed for associations to which contributions are deductible under section 170sc (2) of the Internal Revenue Code.
Section 8: PROTEST
1. A protest may be made to the Board of GFAB. It must be:
A. In writing.
B. Signed by the protestor.
C. Addressed to the Secretary of GFAB, describing the violation and at which show it occurred.
D. Received by an official of GFAB within a timely manner of the alleged violation.
E. The protest will be addressed by an appointed Ethics Committee.
F. $20 deposit must accompany the complaint. Your deposit will be returned if the protest is upheld.
SECTION 9: UPDATING OF RULES
1. This rulebook may be updated by the Membership during the Annual Meeting. All suggested changes must be presented in writing to a member of the Board. The members present may vote on changes at the Annual Meeting. Rule changes may be made on an annual basis.
A. Any possible rule changes must be discussed in a Board of Directors meeting.
B. The minutes from all Board of Directors meetings will be published on the website within five (5) working days of the meeting. Members can read the minutes and have thirty (30) days from the point of publishing to submit any comments or suggestions. These suggestions will be sent to the appropriate Board members via email. The Board will review any suggestions received at the next scheduled Board meeting and will take these suggestions into consideration before voting on the Proposed Rule Change or new rules.
C. When a subject is not addressed in these rules, it must be addressed by the GFAB Board of Directors and their interpretation will stand as the rule until the next year when an appropriate Rule Change will be submitted, or if amendments are added the effective date of such amendments will be published for all GFAB membership to review.
D. All GFAB members are encouraged to bring questions or concerns to a GFAB Board member. These questions will be discussed and handled in a timely manner and the results will be posted on the GFAB web page in the News section.
SECTION 10: MEETINGS OF THE MEMBERS
1. The annual meeting of the members of this association shall be held in November of each year in the state of Montana at such time and place as may be determined by the board of directors. Ten percent of the membership of the association shall constitute a quorum.
2. Membership meetings, regular and special, stating the time and place for meetings are called, shall be given by the Membership Secretary or by the President of GFAB at least 7 days prior to the date of the meeting via social media, web-site or e-mail.
3. The president may call for special meeting of the members. It shall be the responsibility of the Membership Secretary to send notice of special meetings.
SECTION 11: IN-PERSON & ELECTRONIC VOTING
1. Members may vote at any membership meeting in person. Each card holding member is entitled to one vote, i.e., if you have a family membership, the family has one vote.
2. Members may vote electronically on matters being considered by the membership. The Membership Secretary will provide an e-mail with directions and a link for members to vote.