White River Bass Masters: Chapter By Laws 2016

White River Bass Masters

Chapter By-Laws

Amended January 2016

1) Name

a) The name of this organization shall be White River Bass Masters (“WRBM”).

2) Purpose and Objective

a) Unite anglers with common interests and causes.

b) To promote, organize and conduct local bass tournaments in a manner consistent with the format and rules of the national bass organization(s) to which the WRBM is affiliated.

c) To provide, assist and facilitate bass club members with access to a national bass organization(s) including their respective tournaments.

d) To preserve and further the sport of bass angling by actively becoming engaged in the areas of environment, pollution and youth participation.

3) Membership

a) The chapter shall begin with and maintain at least six (6) members

b) Members must be at least 16 years of age.

c) Members must be in and maintain a membership of The Bass Federation (“TBF”) and the Indiana Bass Federation (“IBF”) throughout the calendar year. Any Member that qualifies for and wants to participate in Indiana Bass Federation Nation (“IBFN”) Top 8 must also maintain an active membership in B.A.S.S.

d) Top 8 team members and the two (2) alternates are responsible for purchasing 10 Raffle tickets each.

e) Membership dues shall be collected annually and are broken down as such: State Fee: $10; TBF/FLW: $50; WRBM: $35. Your FLW membership is then paid by the club.

f) New Members are always welcome provided the WRBM maintains a healthy ratio of boaters to non-boaters.

g) There could be additional requirements for membership as dictated by TBF, IBF and/or IBFN. Updates will be posted on the WRBM website (, on the message board or you may request information from the Officers.

h) Your membership may be revoked at any time for club violations.

i) If a Member elects to leave the club or is removed from the club for any reason and at any time, any currently paid dues are non-refundable.

4) Officers

a) The Officers of the Chapter (“Officers”) shall consist of:

i) President – one-year term

ii) Vice President – one-year term

iii) Secretary/Treasurer – one-year term

iv) Tournament Director – one-year term

b) Ad-hoc positions may be filled on a case-by-case basis and serve a one-year term as deemed necessary by the Officers. Ad-hoc positions may include, but are not limited to:

i) Assistant Tournament Director(s)

ii) Tournament Administrator

iii) Website Administrator

iv) Photographer

v) Fundraiser(s)

c) At each Term’s end, if nominations are not made for a replacement, the Incumbent Officer will have the option of serving another one-year term.

d) The Officers will ensure that a complete membership roster will be submitted to the TBF, IBF and IBFN on a yearly basis.

e) The Officers will ensure that the WRBM will belong to, support, stay compliant and relay all pertinent information from the TBF, IBF and IBFN in the interest of WRBM Members.

f) The Tournament Director is responsible for all tournament permits and correspondence with DNR and property managers.

5) General

a) All rules of the WRBM, including By-Laws, “Tournament Reminder” and “Tournament Rules” are superseded by all state, federal, DNR and/or local laws, restrictions or guidelines.

b) No alcoholic beverages or illegal substances will be permitted before or during any club sponsored activities.

6) Tournament Overview

a) The WRBM schedule will comprise of seven (7) regular season tournaments and a classic tournament. All Members in good standing will be eligible to fish the Classic (see 3c).

b) Entry for each tournament will be $40 (“Classic and End of the Year Fund”: $7 for the Classic Fund, $1 for the Big Bass of the year trophy, $1 for the Angler of the Year Travel Trophy and $1 for Biggest Stringer of the year trophy) with an optional $10 Big Bass Pot.

i) Any monetary year-end prize fund left from the Big Bass, AOY Travel Trophy or Biggest Stringer trophy will be paid to the respective winner.

ii) If a Member misses a regular season tournament and wishes to fish the Classic, the Member will be required to pay $10 per tournament missed to compensate the “Classic and End of the Year Fund”. This will be in addition to normal Classic entry fees.

c) Officers may fish the entire tournament schedule including the Classic. However, Tournament Directors will always weigh-in last and have another Member weigh their catch.

d) Anglers are expected to exhibit high sportsmanship and boating safety standards and be courteous to people on and off the water at all times. Remember, you represent WRBM and all its members.


i) If you enter a tournament as a non-boater, you are expected to pay the boater $20.00 for cost of operating the boat for the day for any tournaments within 50 miles of 465 loop. This will be documented on the Tournament Reminder.

ii) If you enter a tournament as a non-boater, you are expected to pay the boater $30.00 for cost of operating the boat for the day with the owner for any tournaments outside 50 miles of 465 loop. This will be documented on the Tournament Reminder.

iii) If there are any boat ramp and/or park fees, these should be split in half between boater and non-boater.

iv) Any additional monies will be a “gentleman’s agreement” between the boater and non-boater.


i) If you enter a tournament as a boater, you will fish out of your boat and have the right to man the trolling motor the entire tournament. However, respectful and sporting treatment to your non-boaters by allowing fair fishing opportunities is mandatory and subject to protest procedures.

ii) In the event that you do not draw a partner, you may fish out of your boat alone.

g) No two (2) anglers shall fish a tournament together more than once in a season until everybody has fished with each other once.

h) Any member that qualifies for an affiliated tournament (State, Regional, National, etc.) that conflicts with a White River Bass Masters regular season tournament will be awarded last place points in the tournament the club is fishing regardless of their performance in the affiliated tournament.  There will be no bonus points awarded in this scenario, only last place points.  Members in this situation are not required to pay the entry fee for the club tournament, but must pay $10 for the Classic Fund and AOY Awards.  If multiple members are subjected to this scenario then they will each receive last place points.

7) Tournament Rules

a) Eligibility

i) Boaters will be paired with available non-boater club members by a blind draw for each tournament until all non-boater club members have been paired with boaters. Excess boaters will then be paired together or fish alone. Changing partners will be on a case-by-case basis designated by the Tournament Director.

ii) Each Boater will be assigned a number at the beginning of the season. At the culmination of each tournament, the non-Boaters numbers will be drawn out of a hat establishing the boater they will be paired with for the next tournament. The morning of each tournament Boaters will draw their starting position. Those boaters who had a partner for the present tournament will be removed from the draw for the next tournament.

iii) Boaters must have at all times proof of insurance and sign any required waiver form prior to launch time. Current requirements are liability insurance in the amount of $300,000 for each boat. Each boater must have in their possession a copy of their watercraft liability insurance policy, or a certificate of insurance showing the name of the insurance company, insured’s name, liability amount, description of watercraft, and policy effective dates.

iv) It will be each member’s responsibility to notify the drawn partner and the tournament director if they are not going to attend a tournament.

v) If an angler shows up at the tournament to fish and he/she has not been put into the draw, they will be released last and may be asked to be the starter boat.

b) Time of Tournament

i) Tournaments shall start at safe daylight time and run for approximately eight (8) hours, exceptions may be made for night tournaments and multi-day tournaments.

ii) No contestants may fish until their specific start number has been called out by the Starter Boat.

iii) If you are not launched and ready when your start number is called by the Starter Boat, you will be skipped and you must wait until the full field is released before you may leave the launch area.

iv) The Tournament Director is required to announce the official time and designated start / return area(s) prior to start of the tournament. The Tournament Director is the official time keeper. If an official time is not announced, it is the responsibility of each contestant to know what time it is and be back on time.

v) Penalty for late start: None. If you launch after the field has been released, you will be able to fish if you find another club member on the lake, have your live well checked and declare if you are in the big bass pot.

vi) A penalty of one (1) pound per minute will be assessed for being late at the end of the tournament. If you are more than ten (10) minutes late, your catch will not be eligible to be weighed for that day, but you will still receive any “Show Points”. The only exceptions to this rule are:

(1) A Boater and/or co-angler assisting another member in the tournament with a disabled boat. They are required to make an effort to contact the Tournament Director or any other member of the club to let them know that they are going to be late and the circumstances.

(2) If there is a co-angler present in the disabled boat they will be granted the exemption from the rule. The Boater and that experienced the mechanical problem will not be granted the exception.

(3) The co-angler gas requirement states that anything less than 50 miles from Monument Circle will cost the co-angler $20 in gas money plus half the ramp/entrance fee. Anything 50 miles and beyond from Monument Circle will cost the co-angler $30 plus half the ramp/entrance fee.

c) Fishing Rules

i) You must stay 50 yards away from a tied or anchored tournament angler. Anchored is considered to be anchored to the bottom and/or tied to an object with the trolling motor up.

ii) Only artificial baits may be used to catch bass, with the exception of pork rind. Fish must be caught in a sporting manner.

iii) No trolling for fish allowed and only one (1) rod can be used at a time per Member.

iv) In the case of sight fishing, fish must be caught in the mouth and not snagged.

v) The Tournament Director and/or the Tournament Reminder will announce any off limit areas, designated start/return areas and whether the creel will be trailored or weighed from the water prior to the tournament.

vi) Anglers are required to stay in their boat for the entire duration of a tournament except in the case of an emergency. Fishing from the bank is not permitted.

vii) There is to be no passing in a marked idle zone at the beginning (release) of a tournament.

viii) Penalty for violation of Fishing Rules is subject to protest procedures up to disqualification.

d) Weigh In

i) Limit shall be five (5) bass (largemouth, smallmouth or Kentucky spotted bass) measuring 14” unless the state has deemed limits higher or lower for that particular body of water. It is your responsibility to be familiar with the creel limits and size limits of the body of water where the tournament is being held. At no time are you allowed to carry more than five (5) bass per Member. Failure to comply will result in disqualification. Members are expected to be on the “Honor System”.

ii) No fish will be weighed in until the Tournament Director has announced that the scales are open.

iii) Weight and length determined by club equipment will be deemed as official. Members have the option of using the official tournament rule for a “Courtesy Bump”. Once fish is handed over to Tournament Director, the member has left the decision up to the Tournament Director to determine whether or not the fish will count. The Tournament Director has final approval or disapproval of measured fish size and their word is final.

iv) All bass must measure at least the minimum size of bass for that lake/river. Where there is a question on minimum size limits for each lake/river, the Tournament Director will make every attempt to clarify before the start of the tournament. Ultimately, it is your responsibility to be familiar with the creel limits and size limits of the body of water where the tournament is being held.

v) Length of a fish is measured with mouth closed and the tail compressed to determine total length. If tail touches line it counts.

vi) Short fish will not be weighed. There is a one (1) pound penalty per short fish. Members CANNOT have in their possession substitute fish that would put them above the five (5) bass limit in cooperation with Section d Rule i (above).

vii) Dead fish will be weighed but a 1/2 pound penalty will be subtracted per dead fish. No fish will be weighed if the fish appears mangled, mashed or stringer kept.

viii) If you submit a fish for the Big Bass Pot and you incur a penalty for that fish the penalty applies to both your total weight and your Big Bass weight.

e) Scoring

ii) The clubs scoring system is as follows: Tournaments are worth a maximum of 100 points. Points will be awarded in one (1) point decreasing increments depending on place of finish (1st place = 100 pts., 2nd place = 99 pts., etc.). Additional Bonus points are added per pound of fish weighed rounded up or down to the nearest pound. For example, if an angler wins a tournament with a tournament weight of 14.50 pounds, then they’ll score 115 points for that tournament (100 pts. for 1st place plus 15 pts. for 14.50 pounds rounded up).

iii) All anglers participating in a tournament but failing to weigh in a fish will receive 50 “Show Points”.

iv) The Classic and/or any WRBM sponsored or co-sponsored OPEN tournament does NOT count towards season point totals thus no points are awarded for participation in these events.

v) Combining positions and splitting awards will split all ties.

vi) Point standings will be posted on the WRBM website ( following the tournaments in a timely manner.

vii) If only one (1) Member weighs in, they will receive 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and Big Bass Prize Money. However, if no member weighs in, everyone will receive their entry fee back minus the Classic and End of Year Fund portion.

f) Boating Rules

i) All boats must have a working “kill switch” for the combustion engine; aerated and fully operating live wells with enough capacity to fully sustain two limits of healthy bass. All participants must wear lifejackets and have a properly functioning “kill switch” attached anytime the combustion engine is running.

ii) All boats must meet safety regulations in force on the lake being fished and must be operated in accordance with the boating regulations on the water being fished.

iii) Any Member observed by another Member breaking a law, restriction or rule may be subject to protest procedures.

g) Sportsmanship

i) Anglers are expected to exhibit high sportsmanship and boating safety standards and be courteous to people on and off the water at all times. Remember, you represent WRBM and all its members.

h) Protest Procedures

i) In the event there is a protest, all protests must be made to the Tournament Director as soon as possible and no later than 10 minutes after the close of the scales. A committee made up of the Officers of the club will rule on the protest. Both parties of the protest will be given ample opportunity to speak on their behalf and state their case. The decision of the committee is final.

ii) Members wishing to protest must be present at the time the protest is filed and remain until a decision is final.

iii) In the event an Officer is part of the protest, they will be replaced at that time by another club member appointed by the Tournament Director so that the committee may remain impartial to the protest.

iv) Decisions of the Committee may include, but not limited to: dismissal of protest, verbal warning, and /or disqualification.

(1) Dismissal of Protest: Committee finds that protest is unfounded.

(2) Verbal Warning: Committee finds that protest is legit, gave competitive advantage but was not malicious or intentional.

(3) Disqualification: Committee finds that protest is legit, gave competitive advantage and was malicious or intentional.

(4) Multiple Verbal Warnings: Members receiving three (3) Verbal Warnings for the same infraction at multiple tournaments will be viewed as malicious or intentional. Member would then be subject to Disqualification.

i) Disqualification

i) Any Member disqualified for a tournament will not be eligible to weigh in their fish to obtain points. The disqualified Member will not be eligible for any applicable “Show Points”.

8: Tournament Schedule

a) The tournament schedule will be comprised of lakes chosen by each member. All members will pick seven (7) lakes to fish for that season. Members will be permitted one (1) vote per lake. A majority vote will determine the seven (7) lakes fished based on the lakes chosen by all members. A hand vote will break all ties at the Winter Meeting. Once the seven (7) lakes are chosen, the months and dates will be voted on by the membership at the Winter Meeting. Exemptions will be made if permit issues affect the tournament schedule.

b) The classic lake will be chosen by a separate, majority vote. This will take place at the annual winter meeting.

c) To be eligible to fish the classic, you must fish at least three regular season tournaments or pay your dues prior to the first regular season tournament

9) Restrictions

a) The WRBM By-Laws may only be amended with majority of the present Membership vote at a “Regularly Scheduled Meeting” that is attended by all the Officers. “Regularly Scheduled Meetings” must be posted by an Officer on the WRBM website ( for all members to have the opportunity to attend.

10) Additional Information

a) Sections of the above WRBM By-Laws that relate to tournament rules may be copied into a separated document to be used as “Tournament Rules”.

b) “By-Laws”, “Tournament Rules” and “Tournament Reminders” will be posted on the WRBM website ( to assist Members with day-of-tournament reminders, including local laws and costs. It is every Members responsibility to be familiar with all applicable rules and regulations.

c) Additional information can be found at:


The Bass Federation (TBF – FLW):

Indiana Bass Federation (IBF – FLW):

The Indiana Bass Federation Nation (IBFN – B.A.S.S.) –