Hume league to introduce “soft” salary cap next season

From the Border Mail

SIX Hume Football Netball League clubs are presently paying above a $100,000 “soft” salary cap to be introduced next season.

In a recent survey conducted by AFL NSW-ACT, 50 per cent of the competition’s clubs said they were spending more than the recently agreed ceiling.

One club estimated it would spend in excess of $131,000 this season.

At the other end of the scale, another said it would fall between $71,000 and $80,000.

In other results from the survey:

  • 75 per cent of clubs believed the present level of payments were unsustainable;
  • 58 per cent believed a salary cap policy could be adequately regulated;
  • 41 per cent believed AFL NSW/ACT should be responsible for determining the level of player payments; and,
  • 91 per cent believed the workload on volunteers had increased due to the requirement to raise revenue to pay players

Hume league general manager Dalton Wegener said the $100,000 soft salary cap had been ticked off at a recent meeting following talks with AFL NSW/ACT officials.

“It cam about after the clubs came to the board and asked us to investigate it,” Wegener said.

“They thought it was a good way to reduce the costs.

“Next season will be a soft salary cap which means there are no penalties, but it’s about getting into the practice of doing it and educating our clubs on a range of practices for the future.”

It is highly likely a more stringent salary cap with penalties will be introduced for 2019.

The Tallangatta and District league presently has an $80,000 salary cap while the Ovens and Murray has a cap of $160,000.

Playing coaches in the Ovens and Murray receive a 50 per cent discount of up to $20,000, meaning clubs can spend up to $180,000 a season.

Eleven of 18 Riverina and Farrer clubs voted in favour of a salary cap in the survey.

The majority of Riverina league clubs believe the cap should be somewhere between $70,000 and $90,000.

Most Farrer league clubs voted for a cap of between $70,000 and $80,000.

“It needs to be a regional model approach,” AFL Southern NSW community football manager Paul Habel said.