OPINION: Bowls NSW threatens own future with unpopular hike

THE landslide of discontent over a near 13% rise in NSW capitation fees continues to gather momentum.

The Northern Rivers district and Tweed-Byron now have joined individual clubs that have sent their own protests to state headquarters.

When 11 clubs attending the NRDBA delegates' meeting are unanimous in their protest, it's a clear indication this is not an isolated whinge and Bowls NSW can ignore the protesters at its peril.

MORE: Northern Rivers bowls clubs protest against fee increase

Why has the state body departed from its usual annual $3 rise in fees to $14? That's the question bowlers are asking. 

They are concerned, too, that taking such a large lump out of club membership fees will result in more financially struggling clubs folding and people on limited incomes giving the game away.

Clubs, to find out how many of their bowlers will become social bowlers without affiliation with the state, have discovered how strong the rejection of the increased fee is.

One club alone has a third of its members indicating they will not be affiliating with Bowls NSW but will play social bowls.

Bowls NSW devoting two full pages of its compulsory-buy magazine to tell us what it is doing for us is an attempt to stop the protests. It's not working.

The state body has to consider what will happen to its pennants and championships - and indeed to its own existence and even that of the game - if bowlers continue to reject what is an unexplained money grab.

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