BMGA Local Rules

Wednesday Night League Only

Lost Ball

  • If a ball is lost and it is certain that it is not out of bounds or in a hazard, for example left of the 10th tee, the player may drop a ball near the agreed upon most likely location that should be. The player continues play on that hole and takes a one stroke penalty.
  • This is NOT in place during weekend tournaments. For weekend events and during match play, proceed under USGA Rule 18.2.

Maximum Strokes

  • If you have not holed out after 8 strokes, pick up and record a 9 for the hole.  Apply ESC maximum when posting.

Ready Golf / No Match Play Recall

  • During WNL, players may not recall shots for playing out of turn. All players are expected to play ready golf through the green.

One Page Rules Sheet

  • Common USGA rules, processes and local rules on a single page.

Hole-By-Hole Rule & FAQ

The following is a list of hole-by-hole rulings that have occurred over the course of several years. These are examples. Much like the USGA Rules and FAQ Documents.

All League Play

Accidental Movement of a ball on the putting green

  • When a player’s ball lies on the putting green, there is no penalty if the ball or ball marker is accidentally moved by the player, his partner, his opponent, or any of their caddies or equipment. The moved ball or ball marker must be replaced as provided in USGA Rules 14.2. This Local Rule applies only when the player’s ball or ball marker lies on the putting green and any movement is accidental. NOTE: If it is determined that a player’s ball on the putting green was moved as a result of wind, water or some other natural cause such as the effects of gravity, the ball must be played as it lies from its new location. A ball-marker moved in such circumstances is replaced.

Music on course

  • The BMGA voted the following policy in for all Wednesday night league play and tournament play:
    • Each foursome is asked to make their own policy
    • If a player wishes to play music, they must gain approval from all the players in the foursome

Stones in bunkers

  • Any stone roughly pea-size and larger in the bunkers shall be deemed a movable obstruction and may be removed under USGA Rule 15.2.

Embedded Ball

  • Relief for an embedded ball under USGA Rule 16.3 is expanded to include a ball embedded any place on the course except for in a hazard (which includes bunkers).

French Drains (aka Drain Tile)

  • There are several of these on the course. This rule only applies to drains that have pea gravel showing.  Many drains are older and have sod covering them, and those are excluded from this rule.  If a French drain that has pea gravel on top of it interferes with your stance or swing it is deemed to be an immovable obstruction, rule USGA 16.1.

Ball in water (Penalty Area)

  • The standard for declaring a ball struck towards the penalty area as being lost in the penalty area will be “more likely than not” as opposed to “virtually certain” as defined in the rules. This is intended to speed up pace of play.

Patio area

  • All portions of the patio are deemed to be out of bounds, whether or not marked as such and all railings thereof are deemed to be a boundary fence, meaning that no relief is to be granted from interference.

Measuring Devices

  • In accordance to USGA Rule 4.3 Permitting Use of Distance-Measuring Device of the USGA, the BMGA allows the use of devices to measure distance, but it may ONLY measure distance.
  • Asking a playing partner for distance between two objects is public information and therefore not seeking advice.

Relief from flower beds

  • Flower beds are considered No Play Zones. Relief allowed from flower beds if they interfere with a players swing or stance. Proceed with the rule for immovable obstruction. See USGA Rule 16.

Relief from staked trees

  • Brookview local rules allow a player to take relief from a young tree that is banded or staked.

Relief from bridges

  • Penalty Area lines as marked by stakes, painted lines or the mow edge and extend vertically, so there is no relief from the portion of a bridge that is within a hazard. If a portion of the bridge that is outside the boundary of a hazard causes interference with your stance or swing; proceed with the rule for immovable obstruction. See USGA Rule 16.

Relief from signs

  • There are several signs on Brookview, including those between holes 3 & 16 and between holes 7 & 16 as well on hole 15 and 16 in the fairway. Even if these signs can be removed, they are considered by the course and the league as immovable obstructions.   Proceed with the rule for immovable obstruction.

Abnormal Course Conditions not marked

  • If a ball comes to rest in or on an area that appears to be Abnormal Course Condition (formally known as Ground under Repair), but is not clearly marked as such, relief may be taken provided the player and his competitor agree that the area is warranted for relief. 
  • The ball may be lifted, without penalty, cleaned and dropped as near as possible to the spot where it lay but not nearer the hole.  A ball in the fairway may be dropped in the fairway, a ball outside the fairway must stay outside the fairway.  This rule is not applicable to balls inside a penalty area.
  • This rule is intended for areas of the course that are currently under maintenance by grounds crew, drainage, or irrigation work. This local rule is not designed for areas of the course with poor surfaces, poor grass, etc.

Gold Tees (Revised February 2023)

To create a more competitive league that is open to all, a rule was established that allows members, 60 and older, to play from the Gold tees if they choose.

In addition, all other BMGA members will be afforded the opportunity to play from the Gold tees when opposing a “Gold Tee” eligible member who elects to play from the Gold tees vs. the Member tees. If the players opt to play the Gold tees, both players’ handicaps must be calculated using the Gold tees (not Member tees) for the entire match being played.  Once the players have teed off from the Gold tees, neither player may revert back to the Member tees or vice versa.

Moving up to the Gold tees will be allowed during the following:

  1. Wednesday Night League
  2. Individual Match Play Tournament
  3. Two Man Match Play Tournament (Note: If one or both partners on a two man team are Gold Tee eligible, and elect to play the Gold tees, an equal number of players from the opposing two man team may also elect to play the Gold tees.)

BMGA Members, who are not Gold tee eligible, are not permitted to play from the Gold tees in any other BMGA sponsored weekend event.

Local Model Rules

Rule B-3: The BMGA has adopted Rule B-3 to play a provision ball for ball in penalty area. By USGA rules, a provision ball may ONLY be played when the ball is believed to be lost or out of bounds. A provision MAY NOT be played when the ball may be in the penalty area.

Local Model Rule B-3 allows players to play a provision when a ball might be in the penalty area. For example:

You are playing Hole #9 and you attempted to reach the green, but you are unsure if the ball has cleared the pond. Under B-3, a player may drop a ball behind the penalty area, play the ball as a provisional and then search for their ball on the other side of the penalty area. This is designed to speed pace of play.

Rule I-1.2

Rule 5.2b is modified in this way: A player may practice on the competition course before or between rounds for all Wednesday Night League events.