Info for new or prospective officials
You've got questions and we've got answers.
This page is designed to answer the most frequent questions we get from our new or potential umpires. It is our goal to be the best organization in the state and the country and we pride ourselves on training and preparing our umpires. If you don't see your question answered here, contact us for more info.
How do I get started?
Obviously you need to join our organization. See the Upcoming Events page or Calendar for upcoming Clinics - we typically have recruiting drives in early spring and also in summer. You may also use the Contact option to contact us for more info.
What is this going to cost me to get started?
NGAUA has fees for our organization and USA Softball fees ($140 combined; $65 for NGAUA Association Fees and $75 for USA Softball Registration. You will also need a uniform and equipment for the respective sport.
Our goal is to encourage new officials and we're aware of the upfront out of pocket costs - if you want to minimize some of your uniform costs check the entry for SAVE YOURSELF SOME MONEY!
EXPECT to pay out in total $200-$300 for registration, uniforms & equipment.
** We generally have uniforms (or reduced uniform requirements) & equipment to get you started! Please don't let the startup costs hold you back - REACH OUT AND WE WILL SEE WHAT WE CAN DO.
SAVE YOURSELF SOME MONEY
We understand the out of pocket costs for uniforms for new officials.
You can search for new and used equipment [and apparel] via Ebay, Craigslist, Play It Again Sports -and- fellow umpires.
You get what you pay for in most cases - better quality items are typically going to cost more. If you are on a budget initially you can opt for used items to keep your initial costs down.
How and when do I get paid?
We pay our officials 15-30 days AFTER the month closes. We contract with multiple county governments and in effect you get paid when NGAUA gets paid.
For new officials understand that this can mean you have an outlay as detailed above and it might be two months before you receive your first paycheck.
We are -NOT- a cash officiating group - we pay our officials via check and IRS 1099 officials at the end of the year.
How do I get assignments?
We use the Arbiter system and our assigner assigns games based upon your availability. We will detail this in our clinics and meetings but YOU dictate your schedule and availability to be assigned. Understand that you are new to our organization so we schedule you initially with veterans to determine your level of expertise, comfort level, etc.
What do I do on my first assignments?
In the Arbiter system you will see your field/park and partner assignment. In regards to the park, get park directions and give yourself plenty of time to find the park (print directions if needed) and prep for your first assignment. Call your partner (they are listed in Arbiter) a day before your assignment or at worst several hours before your assignment. Keep their contact info - call them if you expect to be delayed in getting to the assignment.
How do I get MORE assignments?
Attend EVERY training that you can so that you are prepared.
Do GOOD WORK - the reward for GOOD WORK is MORE WORK!
LISTEN, LEARN, GROW - Every umpire should strive to improve every time you take the field. As your skills progress so do the opportunites!
Be AVAILABLE - keep your gear in the car. Emergencies happen and we routinely have to backfill slots so being prepared for a same day assignment is crucial.
ATTITUDE - we provide a service - be professional and treat everyone with respect.
COMMITMENT - You get out what you put in - NGAUA prides itself on training -but- every official needs to be a student of the game. This requires a commitment on your part to read and know the rules.