SPL to vote on sanctions for clubs who fall foul financially

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Scottish Premier League clubs will vote this month on whether to introduce tougher sanctions for top-flight sides who go into administration or face liquidation.

The 12 clubs will consider a range of proposals to amend the SPL’s rules at a general meeting on April 30 and, if adopted, the amendments will come into effect from May 14. Liquidation is still a possibility for Rangers if a Company Voluntary Arrangement (CVA) cannot be agreed with creditors. The proposals include increasing the number of points docked from clubs who go into administration from ten points to at least 15 points. If Rangers are forced into liquidation, a ‘newco’ would be deducted ten points for two seasons if accepted straight back into the SPL. A statement from the SPL confirmed: “On April 30 2012 the SPL clubs will consider a range of proposals to amend the Articles and Rules of the SPL.

“Resolution 1 proposes an increase in the sporting sanction (points deduction) on any club which suffers or is subject to an insolvency event from ten points to the greater of 15 points and one third of the club’s SPL points in the preceding season.

“Resolution 2A proposes further sporting sanctions in the event that any club undergoes an insolvency transfer event (ie transfers its share in the SPL to a new company where this occurs because of the insolvency of the transferor) of ten points in each of two consecutive seasons from the insolvency transfer event.”

As well as being hit with a points deduction, a newco would also face financial penalties in the form of SPL payments being slashed by 75 per cent for three seasons. The statement added: “Resolution 2B proposes revisions to the fee payment arrangements, ie SPL fees to any club which has undergone an insolvency transfer event will be reduced by 75 per cent in each of three consecutive seasons from the insolvency transfer event.

“Resolution 3 proposes extending sporting sanctions where an insolvency event is suffered by a group undertaking of a member club of the SPL. Resolution 4 proposes updates and extensions to the definition of insolvency event in the SPL rules.

“Resolution 5 proposes updates and extensions to the definition of insolvency event in the SPL articles and clarifies the process in the event that a member which is the subject of an insolvency event is required to transfer its share in the company.”

A transfer embargo would be implemented on any club which fails to make PAYE and National Insurance Contributions to Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs, under resolution seven. Late wage payments are also an issue the SPL has sought to address. The statement read: “Resolution 6 proposes a specific requirement in the SPL Rules that clubs must pay their players in terms of their contracts of service on due dates and places a duty on any club to report any failure to pay its players in a timely manner to the SPL. Failure to pay players and/or to notify such failure to the SPL would be a breach of SPL Rules.”

The amendments will be considered at the end of this month, with the prospect of them coming into force the day after the 2011/12 season ends. The statement added: “Resolutions 2B and 5 require the support of a minimum of 11 clubs to be adopted; all other resolutions require the support of a minimum of eight clubs to be adopted.”