Is Amateur BJJ and Submission Grappling Tournaments Leaving Illinois?
On Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn’s desk is a bill that could cripple Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and submission grappling tournaments in the state.
Illinois House Bill 1490 would put all full contact martial arts, pro and amateur, under one banner, and all fighters and promoters must be licenses by the Illinois State Athletic Commission; as well as officials.
This bill wants to make sure all martial arts, including Brazilian jiu-jitsu, will be under their regulation. (Olympic boxing, Tai Kwon Do, and judo events plus collegiate and high school wrestling is exempt from the bill.) Amateur kickboxing would also be included in the bill.
What this means for Promoters:
- They must register for a promoter’s license from the state:
- They must hire security for events
- They must have an ISAC approved physician on hand at events to clear fighters
- They must pay 5% of revenues to the State
What this means for amateur fighters:
- They must register with the state as an amateur athlete
- They must take a physical
- They may need to pay a registration fee to the state
Several promoters are already trying to find other options for events they planned in theChicagoare during this summer. NAGA has changed their venue to East Chicago,Indianato avoid the new law, while the International BBJ Federation is looking to relocate their event in August.
In the long run, the state may have shot itself in the foot, having scared off a growing revenue stream. The bill, however, is yet to be signed by the Governor Quinn.