NTC and Facilities Strategy Update: RCA Board of Directors response to SLSG Final Report and RFP

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Tuesday May 1, 2018

The RCA Board of Directors and High Performance Leadership team reviewed the Sport Law and Strategy Group (SLSG) final report issued on April 4th, 2018 and discussed strategies to address the long-term NTC Plan on April 20-21st in Victoria, BC. The RCA Board of Directors approved the SLSG recommendation to develop a formal Request for Proposal (RFP) process to establish the primary National Training Centre effective October 2020. SLSG will work with RCA and the NTC Project Committee to facilitate this process.

SLSG Recommendation #1:

Establish a primary NTC in Canada that is considered to be the “home base” for RCA’s High Performance Program, opening as early as October 2020: In the lead-up to the Olympic and Paralympic Games in 2020, select a primary NTC home base in Canada that scores highly on the NTC Criteria Scorecard tool which has been provided to RCA. The intent would be to begin the next quadrennial (October 2020) with a functional primary NTC in place.

RCA Response: RCA accepts the above recommendation and will undertake a comprehensive process in selecting and implementing a functional primary NTC in Canada by October 2020.

SLSG Recommendation #2:

Develop a Request for Proposal (RFP) to determine potential sites for the primary NTC: RCA develops a formal Request for Proposal (RFP) document that is distributed across Canada and allows for any ‘site group’ in Canada to submit its proposal to RCA as the potential site for the primary NTC. The RFP will highlight the NTC Criteria Scorecard and the value that will be placed upon a site’s ability to meet the key criteria within the scorecard. 

RCA Response: RCA accepts the above recommendation and will develop and commence a formal Request for Proposals process in May 2018, that provides the opportunity for all Canadian communities (both established and yet to be established rowing locations) to submit proposals.

SLSG Recommendation #3:

In addition to the primary NTC, consider a secondary ‘Regional Performance Centre’, at one of RCA’s existing NextGen Hubs: This is a longer-term goal that would follow the establishment of the primary NTC. The Regional Performance Centre would be utilized on a seasonal basis for designated rowing programs and would be co-located at one of RCA’s NextGen Hubs that are geographically opposite to RCA’s primary NTC. 

RCA Response: While RCA acknowledges the above recommendation, it is committed to RCA’s NextGen program and the designated HUB locations. RCA’s High Performance Program will utilize the five (5) NextGen HUBs as regional performance HUBs for Carded Athletes to receive services in support of their approved Individual Athlete Performance Plans, if training seasonally outside of the primary NTC, in years one and two of the quadrennial.

SLSG Recommendation #4:

Develop a transitional plan for athletes to relocate to the primary NTC once it is established, giving careful consideration to the needs of senior athletes and the support that can be provided by RCA: RCA has a responsibility to support the transition of athletes impacted by NTC decisions and a transitional plan for 2020 would serve to outline and guide this support as well some key considerations. 

RCA Response: RCA accepts the above recommendation and will undertake a communications plan to disseminate transitional planning to high performance athletes following the selection of a primary NTC location. Carded Athletes impacted through this process will have their transitional plans assessed by the High Performance Director on a case-by-case basis.

SLSG Recommendation #5:

Decision-Making Process: Sport Law & Strategy Group has provided a decision-making framework for RCA’s National Training Centre Strategy. 

RCA Response: RCA accepts the above recommendation and has adopted the decision-making process provided through the NTC & Facilities Strategy Review.

RCA has committed to developing and launching a Request for Proposal process by May 8, 2018. The RFP process will be distributed across the country, enabling any site group in Canada to submit its proposal to RCA as the potential site for the primary NTC. The process will take place in two stages: Expressions of Interest (due June 2018) followed by formal proposals (due Fall 2018).

The NTC Project Committee will oversee the distribution of the RFP, review submissions, conduct site visits and manage the preliminary selection of the future site for RCA’s primary NTC. The committee will make a recommendation to RCA’s Board of Directors as to the selected site and the RCA Board will approve the selected site.

The NTC Project Committee will include representation by the following individuals:

- Jennifer Walinga, Committee Chair and Board of Director

- Peter McClelland, Board Athlete Director

- Terry Dillon, CEO

- Iain Brambell, High Performance Director

- Adam Parfitt, Director, Athlete and Coach Pathways

- Two additional committee members with high performance and/or NTC facilities background – selection underway

Explicit details will be outlined regarding the NTC Request for Proposal process next week. For further information on the NTC Request for Proposal plan, please email ntcproposals@rowingcanada.org.