2024 MGA Local Rules and Terms of Competition (Hard Card)

2024 MGA Local Rules and Terms of Competition (Hard Card)

Minnesota Golf Association tournament play is governed by the Rules of Golf and by the following Local Rules and Terms of Competition and Definitions.  Any changes or additions to these will be supplied on a Notice to Players and/or supplemental Local Rules sheet at the specific competition site.

Unless otherwise noted, the penalty for the breach of a Local Rule or Condition is: Match Play-Loss of Hole; Stroke Play-Two Strokes.

Click HERE to download a copy of the MGA Local Rules and Terms of Competition.

REPORTING RESULTS (Stroke Play Only) – "Digital" scoring will be the method by which scores are entered and returned to the Committee.  Upon completion of play, the player should check the hole scores entered by the marker and raise any issues with the Committee and must ensure the marker certifies the scores.  The player must not change a hole score without the marker’s agreement or Committee’s approval and must certify the hole scores promptly with the Committee.  

MISSING PLAYER OR MARKER CERTIFICATION – Model Local Rule L-1 as prescribed in Section 8 of the Committee Procedures is in effect.  "Rule 3.3b(2) is modified in this way: If a player returns a scorecard without the hole scores being certified either by the player, the marker or both, the player gets the general penalty (two penalty strokes).  The penalty applies to the last hole of the player's round."
PRACTICING BEFORE & BETWEEN ROUNDS (Stroke Play Only) – Model Local Rule I-1.1 as prescribed in Section 8 of the Committee Procedures is in effect.  Prior to and after a round in stroke play, a player may practice on the designated practice areas.  Rule 5.2b covering practice in stroke play is modified in this way.  “A player must not practice on the competition course before or between rounds.”  PENALTY: 1ST Breach – Two Penalty Strokes applied to the player’s first hole.  PENALTY: 2ND Breach – Disqualification.
PRACTICING BETWEEN HOLES (Stroke Play Only) – Model Local Rule I-2 as prescribed in Section 8 of the Committee Procedures is in effect.   “Rule 5.5b is modified in this way: Between the play of two holes, a player must not (1) make any practice stroke on or near the putting green of the hole last played, or (2) Test the surface of that putting green by rubbing the putting green or rolling a ball.”  This does not preclude a player from finishing out a hole where the score may not be used in team competition.  PENALTY: Two Penalty Strokes applied to the next hole.
PACE OF PLAY (Rule 5.6b; Stroke Play and Match Play) The pace of play is governed by the MGA Pace of Play Policy and will be posted on the webpage associated with each competition and at the starting hole(s) of all MGA competitions.  PENALTY: 1ST Breach – Warning; 2ND Breach – One Penalty Stroke; 3RD Breach – General Penalty; 4TH Breach – Disqualification.
LIST OF CONFORMING BALLS – Model Local Rule G-3 as prescribed in Section 8 of the Committee Procedures is in effect.  PENALTY: Disqualification.

INTEGRAL OBJECTS – Include cables, rods, wires and wrappings when closely attached to trees, and artificial walls and pilings when located in penalty areas or in or adjacent to bunkers, and bunker liners. An exposed bunker liner may be treated as ground under repair, but interference does not exist if the liner interferes only with the player's stance.

GATES IN BOUNDARY FENCES AND WALLS  Model Local Rule F-26 as prescribed in Section 8 of the Committee Procedures is in effect.  "All closed gates that are attached to boundary walls and fences are part of the boundary object.  Relief is not allowed from such a gate under Rule 15.2 or 16.1.  But an open gate is not treated as part of the boundary object and may be closed or moved to a different position."

WOOD CHIPS & MULCH – Are loose impediments.
GROUND UNDER REPAIR – Defined by white lines or otherwise listed on the Local Rules Sheet.  French drains and cultivated flower and shrubbery beds on the course are ground under repair even if not so marked.
RELIEF FROM SEAMS OF CUT TURF – Model Local Rule F-7 as prescribed in Section 8 of the Committee Procedures is in effect.  
WHITE-LINED AREAS TYING INTO ARTIFICALLY SURFACED ROADS AND PATHS – White-lined areas of ground under repair and the artificially surfaced roads, paths or other identified obstructions that are connected to are a single abnormal course condition when taking relief under Rule 16.1.

BALL DEFLECTED BY ELEVATED POWER LINE – Model Local Rule E-11 as prescribed in Section 8 of the Committee Procedures is in effect.  “If it is known or virtually certain that a player’s ball that is in bounds hits a power line during play, the stroke does not count.  The player must replay the stroke by playing the original ball or another ball from the spot that the stroke was made.”  However, a ball striking a tower, pole or support wire without striking the power line itself, or striking the power line when out of bounds, must be played as it lies.  There is no line of flight relief from these obstructions.
ANIMAL NEAR BALL Model Local Rule E-13 as prescribed in Section 8 of the Committee Procedures is in effect.

TEMPORARY IMMOVABLE OBSTRUCTIONS – Model Local Rule F-23 as prescribed in Section 8 of the Committee Procedures is in effect.  All tents, scoreboards and other temporary equipment on the course, provided it is not readily movable, are considered to be Temporary Immovable Obstructions.  

PENALTY AREAS – Penalty areas are marked as either red or yellow.
• When stakes or flags and lines are used to mark penalty areas, the stakes or flags identify penalty areas and lines define them. 
• When a penalty area is defined on only one side, it is deemed to extend to infinity.
• When a penalty area is connected to the out of bounds edge, the penalty area extends to and coincides with the out of bounds.
OUT OF BOUNDS – Defined by the line between the course-side points, at ground level, of white stakes, fence posts and white lines (if used to define the boundary).  If both stakes and lines are used to define the boundary, the stakes identify the boundary and the line defines the boundary.  When stakes are used to define or show the boundary, they are boundary objects.  
     Dangerous situations - One prolonged air horn note, repeated.
     Other types of suspension - Three consecutive air horn notes, repeated.
     Resumption of play - Two short air horn notes, repeated.

When play is suspended for a dangerous situation, play must discontinue immediately and must not make another stroke until the Committee resumes play.  All practice areas are closed during suspension for a dangerous situation until the Committee declares them open.  PENALTY: Disqualification.  NOTE: Players who practice on closed practice areas will be asked to stop practicing; failure to stop practicing might result in disqualification.
MOTORIZED TRANSPORTATION Unless otherwise permitted by the Terms of the Competition, Model Local Rule G-6 as prescribed in Section 8 of the Committee Procedures is in effect and includes the exception that always authorizes riding when a player is operating under penalty of stroke and distance.  “During a round, a player or caddie must not ride on any form of motorized transportation except as authorized or later approved by the Committee.”  PENALTY: General Penalty for each breach. If between holes, applies to the next hole.
PROHIBITING USE OF CERTAIN TYPE OF SHOES Model Local Rule G-7 as prescribed in Section 8 of the Committee Procedures is in effect.

WHEN COMPETITION IS FINAL – The competition is final when the trophy has been presented to the winner or, in the absence of a prize ceremony, when all scores have been approved by the Committee.  The result of a match is final when the Committee has approved the result and published the results on the public scoreboard (including a digital scoreboard).
The Minnesota Golf Association’s Rules and Competitions and Executive Committees authorize these Rules.
Amended – January 2024


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