Prepared by the GreenpowerUSA Rules Committee
The GPUSA Rules Committee, made up of nine to eleven volunteers appointed annually by the Board of Directors, is responsible for establishing, modifying, updating and clarifying rules and standards for the construction, inspection, scheduling, organization, operation, and conduct of GPUSA events. To assist in the rules making process, the GPUSA Rules Committee can appoint specialized Advisory Committees to make recommendations to the GPUSA RC based on their research and knowledge of the items. Integral to this rule process is the membership. Rules development and changes in vehicle specifications are often a result of requests made by you, the member. Let’s take a look at how this process works.
STEP 1 - MEMBER INPUT
A member, be they a competitor or an official, has a concern (e.g. "My car is not fast enough" or "his/her car is too fast" or "Is this safe to use as bodywork" or "Why are the rules set like this," etc.). Thus, a request is made to the GPUSA RC by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
STEP 2 – COMMITTEE REVIEW
The GPUSA RC members individually review each member's input and recommend a course of action to the committee. The committee then reviews the request via STEP 3.
consolidates the responses and in turn makes a response to the requestor, posts to the GreenpowerUSA website, and includes the update bulletin into the next GPUSA newsletter, (ONLY if appropriate to do so).
STEP 3 - CONFERENCE CALLS
The GPUSA RC convenes each month via conference call and considers the recommendations to date. The GPUSA RC then prepares a response, and in turn makes a response to the requestor, posts to the GreenpowerUSA website, and includes the update bulletin into the next GPUSA newsletter, (ONLY if appropriate to do so).
Typically, the responses fall into four categories:
Rule Changes—A rule change typically affects an entire class, a method of car construction, or the manner in which a competitive event is conducted. The GPUSA RC is not authorized to unilaterally implement rule changes; they can only recommend that the Board of Directors approves them. They are then published as rule update bulletins. This process could take 30-180 days depending upon the nature of the rule change.
Tabled Items—These are subjects which require further research by the rules committee or have been returned to committee for further consideration. In some cases, the letter writer may not have provided enough details for a decision to be reached. In this case, a representative from the committee may contact the originator or another source for additional information.
Errors and Omissions—An E&O is just that, a correction of a typo, misplaced decimal points (95" brake rotors on a Goblin!), or recently received information from a manufacturer providing missing or incorrect information in current publications.
Clarifications— Sometimes a few competitors will interpret a rule in a completely different manner. Thus, a clarification is born. A clarification cannot result in a substantive alteration of a rule, merely an expression of its original intent. If it appears that a clarification will result in a totally new meaning, then it becomes in effect a rule change.
STEP 4 - BOARD OF DIRECTORS
The GPUSA Board of Directors (BoD) meets quarterly. Items recommended by the GPUSA RC are considered as necessary. When considering the items, the BoD takes into account the comments of the RC as well as the original request. The BoD may also establish when a particular recommendation is to become effective. Normally, this would be immediately, or June 1st of the following year.
The GPUSA RC comprises nine to eleven members, one of whom is selected chairman. They are invariably avid supports of GPUSA with a strong technical knowledge and, in addition, a sense of where the class should be headed in the future.
Members serve for approximately three years so as to ensure a continuing influx of new ideas, but there is no set term for being on a committee. If you feel you have something to contribute in this arena, send a brief resume to the GPUSA Board at info@GreenpowerUSA.net for future consideration.
Unlike an advisory committee, the GPUSA RC does not necessarily strive for geographic representation, although this is certainly a consideration. Of primary importance is the specialized knowledge each member must possess with respect to a specific class of vehicles, education, vehicle construction. And, of course, a vision of the future.
For issues relating to these technical forms, please contact Andy Bernard at Andy.Bernard@GreenpowerUSA.net or 256-520-9890.