FAQ’s


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Frequently Asked Questions…

…about Joining the Hamilton Board and becoming a basketball referee.


How much money will I make?
  • Game rates vary depending on the level of play.  As of 2016-16, single game rates for 32 minute non post-secondary games (levels below College) range from $35 to $55.  Travel may be added depending on the location of the games.  A portion of games fees are withheld by the Board to cover operating costs – see the Constitution & By-Laws for full details,
When / how will I get paid?
  • Cheques are handed out at our monthly meetings based on game fees that have been collected to date by the Hamilton Board. Pay dates normally occur at the first meeting of the year in September, then at the monthly meetings in November, December, January, February & March, and at the AGM in May.
How often can I / will I referee?
  • One of the biggest advantages of being a referee is that your schedule is flexible and dependent on your availability.  Assignments will vary depending on your level of experience but can be as little as a few games a month or as busy as refereeing every day based on your ability and availability.
Is there any cost to join?
  • Annual registration fees (as of 2015-16) are $150.00.  This fee includes a Rule Book, all educational materials, membership in IAABO (International Association of Approved Basketball Officials), membership in OABO (Ontario Association of Basketball Officials) and most importantly insurance coverage.
Do I have to buy a uniform / how much is a uniform?
  • All referees with our Board are required to conform to the standard uniform – black trousers, all black shoes, black laces, black socks, black and white striped shirt with black trim, black lanyard and a black Fox40 whistle. If a belt is worn, it shall be black.  The warm-up jacket shall be a black basketball jacket designated by the Hamilton Board Executive and embroidered with the Hamilton Board crest.
  • Newer officials often start with “just the basics” and can be equipped to officiate for very low cost (especially if you attend our Summer Camp where we provide a free black & white striped shirt, whistle and lanyard).  Other items (pants, socks, shoes etc.) do not have to be basketball specific and can be purchased at any local store.  The warm-up jacket can be purchased at a later date as you progress in the level of game assignments.
  • If you do not attend the Summer Camp, a Black-and-White striped shirt, whistle and lanyard from Honig’s Canada will cost about $48
  • A full starter package including all items except shoes is available from Honig’s Canada for $164 (as of Sept 2014).
When does the season start & end / when should I join?
  • High school basketball generally starts in the 2nd week of September.  New(er) officials may not start refereeing until mid-October when the house leagues and younger rep basketball begins.  The season generally wraps up by the end of May.  New(er) officials should strongly consider attending the free Summer Camp to get a jump start on training for the upcoming season.  Brand new officials need to register as early as possible in September (preferably the first meeting) and attend as many training sessions in September & October as possible in order to be ready to start officiating in mid-October.  New officials normally will not be permitted to join after October 1 unless transferring from another local Board.
How do you train referees?
  • Our training starts with our free Summer Camp and continues in September with classes on Monday & Wednesday nights throughout September & October.
  • Training includes both classroom educational / rules sessions and on-court practice sessions.
Do I have to write an exam?
  • All officials will write an exam in November of each year.
Is there a minimum age?
  • Officials must be 16 years old as of September 1 of the current year in order to officiate.
Can I transfer from another Board / become a Dual member?
  • We welcome both transfers from other local Boards (does not have to be within Ontario) and Dual members from other Boards to join us.  Please complete the form found on the “Join the Hamilton Board” page and indicate you are a transfer / dual member.
  • New officials to our Board, including transfers & dual members, should be committed to attending our Summer Camp and / or training sessions in September & October in order to be evaluated on the court by our assignors.  Games will not be assigned to new members, including transfers & dual members until the Hamilton Board assignors have evaluated your abilities.