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This article is the second in a special six-part series commemorating the 50th anniversary

of the National Club Association. Over the years, NCA has kept the private club industry informed, engaged and protected from legislative, regulatory and legal issues that threatened the rights and privileges of private clubs. This article from October 1997 covers the efforts of NCA and its members to protect the ability to

classify caddies as independent contractors. An integral part of golf’s rich history, caddie programs were endangered when a routine Internal Revenue Service (IRS) audit in 1995 at the Westchester Country Club in Rye, New York, ruled that caddies should be classified as employees and not independent contractors. While the club appealed the initial IRS determination, the National Club Association began a multi-year program to rally members, including establishment of the Coalition to Preserve Caddie Programs, and to lobby for legislation to preserve independent contractor status for caddies. Legislation introduced in 1997 by Rep. Dan Burton (R-Ind.), H.R. 2321: The Caddie Relief Act, failed to advance because there was no tax legislation to which it could be attached. However, though the act never became law, it established a grassroots movement to support caddie programs and created greater awareness of the issue in Congress and the media of the many benefits caddie programs provide to young men and women. NCA’s lobbying activities for the Caddy Relief Act of 1997 was just one of many instances over the

years in which private club issues—regulatory, legislative and legal—have been defended and supported for the benefit of the industry. This visit back in time illustrates that whether an issue affects a single club or the entire industry, NCA will be vigilant in its mission to defend, protect and advance the interests and well-being of private, social and recreational clubs.



FALL 2010


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