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Milwaukee Rules 2024


1.    Triple Bogey Max Rule
The maximum score that a player in A, B, C and D flights can score on a hole is triple bogey. If you are sitting at double bogey, and are not in the hole, pick up your ball and score a triple bogey. Do not continue to play the hole as the whole reason for this rule is to speed up pace of play. If you continue to play past double bogey, you are defeating the purpose.

2.    All Heavily Wooded Areas, Heather or Extreme Long Grass will be considered a Red Penalty Area (Lateral Hazard)
All Heavily Wooded areas, Prairie or Extreme Long Grass areas may be considered a Red Penalty Area (only if known, or virtually certain that the ball has entered one of these areas, otherwise is considered a LOST BALL) and take relief from these areas according to the Red Penalty Area rules. The proper drop location is determined just as it would be had the ball gone into a marked Red Penalty Area (think of the whole area of trees or Prairie grass as if it were a Penalty Area). The drop is where the ball first crossed into this area and is subject to the same regulations as a Red Penalty Area. The drop location is NOT perpendicular to where the ball lies or expected to be. This rule can be used for all flights, including Champ Flight.

If one in your group can’t find their ball, other players need to hit their balls before helping them look but their time starts when that golfer starts looking for his ball.   If there is a minute or 2 remaining once you hit, then of course you can help.  


3.    Out of Bounds Rule
If you hit your ball Out of Bounds (MARKED BY WHITE STAKES as defined by the COURSE), and did not hit a provisional ball, you must drop within 2 club lengths of where you crossed into out of bounds under penalty of 2 STROKES and not just 1 stroke. You cannot take the fairway drop option. This eliminates the going back and re-tee or hitting from original spot.

This rule can apply to all flights, including Champ Flight.

4.    One Ball Rule in Effect
For the Nationals rule, each player must play the same make AND model ball for the duration of the round, not just the same make. For The Milwaukee Local Rule, all players who are not using the same make and model, the player must uniquely mark each ball so that it can be certain of ownership with #1, #2, #3 etc., marked also. This includes that they must play the same color ball as well even if it is the same make and model. The USGA Approved Ball List lists each color as a separate line item in the list which means it is technically a different ball.

If a player does not mark the ball, then there is no way to know if a lost ball is found. If a ball is lost, and presumed found, said player must triple bogey the hole (if a provisional was not played - and marked), as there is no way to be certain that a found ball belongs to the player in question.

5.    Embedded Ball Rule Anywhere in General Area
A ball embedded in its own pitch mark, anywhere in the General Area (this is the whole area of the course except: the teeing ground, putting green of the hole being played, out of bounds and all penalty areas), may be lifted, cleaned, and dropped as close to the original spot, no nearer the hole, without penalty. This is a USGA rule.



6.    Milwaukee Modified Local Rules

Rules for the tournament will be POSTED AT THE CHECK IN DESK. For example, if we are playing preferred lies (lift, clean, and place) it will be posted or any other condition that may affect play. We will be playing “RAKE and PLACE” (within a scorecard length of original location) in all bunkers. This is an option, if you want to play the ball down in a bunker, you may do so.

YOU MUST CHECK IN NO LATER THAN 30 MINUTES AHEAD OF YOUR ASSIGNED TEE TIME, and at the FIRST TEE NO LATER THAN 10 MINTUES BEFORE YOUR ASSIGNED TEE TIME. The best rule of thumb is to get to the course early and CHECK IN RIGHT AWAY! Should there be an issue with cutting the time close to check in, CALL OR TEXT THE TOUR DIRECTOR and we can decide on whether you will be allowed to play.  We post the tee times at least 48 hours in advance of a tournament, so there is ample time to plan arrangements to play in an event. Entry fees will NOT be refunded if there is a violation.

7.    New Member Probation Period of 2 Calculated Rounds
We do our very best to try to make sure that all new members are placed in the proper flight to begin with. This is not an exact science especially if the new member does not have an established USGA/GHIN or WSGA Index
To make sure that we protect the field from New Members not being placed in the proper flight, we are implementing the following rule.

All new members without an established GHIN/USGA or WSGA index and are borderline within 1 or 2 strokes of the higher flight, they will go to the higher flight to start and play their way into the proper flight.   Give it a few rounds and it all works out. 

The likelihood that a new member that is in the proper flight would win their flight within the first 2 events is extremely low due to being new to tournament play. If a new member were to card a score and win in a particular flight, it is subject to the battlefield rule where they do not win that tournament and are automatically moved to the higher flight. This is why we are implementing this rule in order to handle this situation should it happen and there is now a clear-cut rule to handle this.

This is not meant to punish New Members but to protect the integrity of the flights and our tournaments from improper flight placement. MAKE SURE TO READ THE NATIONAL RULE BOOK FOR FLIGHT PLACEMENT INFORMATION!

8.    No Drop Zones Used for Any Event
No Drop Zones will be used by Any Player during any Milwaukee Amateur Tour Event except for Champ flight may use drop zones where available.

Because No Drop Zones are allowed at Nationals and because the Triple Bogey Max Rule is in Effect then we will not use any Drop Zones during our Events as well. Champ Flight does not have triple bogey max therefore can utilize drop zones for Milwaukee events.

9.    Guest Policies for Placing in Tournaments
To be sure that we keep the full integrity of our flights in all our tournaments, we are implementing a set of policies revolving around guests playing in our tournaments. Due to the high demand of tournaments, with many selling out, guests are not allowed to join an event until the Monday deadline of the event.  If there are still open spots, guests may join an event on the Monday deadline.

As a guest, they will have the option to register and pay for a membership prior to their round.  They can experience the stroke play format and compete for the cash games
Also, any prize money awarded to any guest for placing must be used towards the purchase of a membership or future event. Cash games are not included in this, and cash games will be paid to the guest.

10.    Play Ready Golf!

Ready Golf will be played at all our events, and always, tee to green and on the green as well! If you are waiting on the group in front of you, then you may observe turn etiquette, otherwise there should be NO ONE waiting to hit - not on the tee, fairway, rough, hazards or greens. If you are ready, and it's clear, then go ahead and hit! Keep the play moving forward. Play should never be at a standstill. Even if waiting for the group ahead, there are things you can be doing to ensure you will be ready to hit when it is clear such as getting yardage, making club selection, etc...

Honors is exactly that, an honor and there is no rule about hitting rotation in Stroke Play. If the player with honors is not ready, and you are, please announce to that player that you are ready and you are going to hit. If you have the honors and are not ready, you must not get upset if someone wants to hit first if they are ready. If you are not ready, announce that you are not ready and invite anyone that is ready to hit to go ahead and hit. Do NOT use this rule as an excuse to make yourself 'not ready' so that you don't have to go first!

11.  Pace of Play System in Live Score
In the Live Scoring System, there is a Pace of Play monitoring system. Your status is displayed on the top of the Main Scoring Page after you enter each score in. The time that you enter each score in is logged and compared to the group in front of you and is what is the determining factor on if you are on pace or behind pace. The system will understand how far behind the group in front of you that your group is and if you are an entire hole behind or more then you will be given warnings and possibly even penalty strokes if you do not catch up after a hole or 2. The system will display this very clearly.

Your job is to always keep up with the group in front of you. We understand that there are holes that you will fall behind, but your job is to then catch up if you do fall behind.

This system is designed to be as fair as possible for everyone. There is no possibility of favoritism or excuses. Everyone will follow the exact same rules and time restrictions. We understand that there are always situations where your group can fall behind, but that is what the warning is for.

In total, a group can be assessed 2 Penalty Strokes for a round that the group was continuously behind without any attempt to catch up. This may seem like a lot, but that means that said group was behind for the entire round, which means that every group behind them ended up playing a longer round than they should have. Slow play affects EVERYONE and event PGA players are put on the clock if they are too far behind the group in front of them and assessed penalties if they do not catch up.

If you are worried that you may be unfairly penalized due to a particularly slow player in your group then make sure that player knows they are slow (believe it or not, some players are just that oblivious and some also know very well they are slow.) Keep everyone moving, including yourself. We will be tracking every single player that receives penalty strokes. We will be able to track trends of individuals. If a particular individual is tagged as a problem, then that person can be addressed and asked to leave the tour if it needs to come to that. This is an AMATEUR tour. There isn't thousands or millions of dollars on the line.

Please let us know if you have any questions on this system or pace of play expectations.

12.  GPS and Range Finders Permitted
Only USGA approved GPS and Range Finder devices are permitted for play. Use of illegal devices, such that measure slope, etc..., will result in disqualification from the event.

Smartphone GPS apps that are used only to measure distance will be allowed during play, provided user is not also using a compass, weather app, club suggestions, or any other app/info that can be used as a benefit/advantage to the game. Any person caught using any of the additional functions other than distance measurements will be disqualified from that event. The app may be used to keep score and stats as well.

13.  Putt Out Instead of Marking
If you have a ball that is only a few feet away from the hole, do not mark the ball but rather continue to putt out, provided this will not cause you to step in someone's line.

We have seen numerous players mark their balls when only a couple a foot away from the hole that could have been tapped in. This adds a significant amount of time to the round. On average, if marking and then coming back to finish were to add 30 seconds each time, and is done by 2 people on each green, this would add 18 extra minutes to the round for no good reason. Most of the time the return putt is not missed due to having to have to putt out, but rather using the time to think too much about it. Usually having more time to think about it causes more misses than putting out at the time. If you watch, the PGA will usually finish the putt instead of marking.

14.  Play 2 balls in event of a rules dispute
If there is ever any dispute amongst the group about a ruling, the player should play 2 balls from the point of the dispute. The player MUST announce to the other players which ball / rule they would prefer providing the ruling is made prior to taking a stroke at either of the 2 balls. Take note of both scores for that hole and move on with the round. After the round is done, and before signing the scorecard, seek out the Tour Directors (Rules Committee) for a final ruling. The proper score will be circled on the card and used for the official score.

DO NOT sit and get mad at someone because they see the rule different than you!

  • Each group is required to have one person completing the paper scorecard and one person completing the online scorecard. Players are expected to fulfill both duties when asked during a tournament. Please come prepared.
  • Every player is responsible for verifying his/her hole-by-hole score on both the paper scorecard and the online scorecard. 
  • Every player is responsible for the pace of play for their group and should be aware of their position on the course.
  • I will NOT let one or two golfers continue to break this rule, golf courses will NOT allow us back. By all means do your routine but there is a 40-second time limit for a reason, and we would have 20 minute holes if the whole group did the same. It's just not acceptable and EVERY player is responsible for this.   
  • The 3-minute time begins when anyone starts looking for the lost ball. This means that if anyone assists you with looking for your ball, your time begins when the looking started. If more than 1 player ball is lost, players MUST look for their own ball first! If more than 1 ball is being looked for, the 3 minutes is not for each ball, but 3 minutes total.
  • Each player should identify his ball with a distinctive marking and show it to his playing partners.
    • You must be able to positively identify that the ball you found is not one of the same brand and number that was lost by another player.
    • If you cannot positively identify the ball as yours, then USGA rules deem your ball to be lost. 
    • When putting a new ball in play after a ball is lost or when a ball is used as a provisional, the new ball must be clearly distinguishable from the original ball.


15.  Score Card
There will only be 1 official score card per group. 1 player needs to keep score on the official scorecard provided and another player keep score in the live scoring system throughout the round. Compare the live score system and the scorecard to ensure the two match and then all players must sign and turn in the card. The group may keep score on more than 1 card, but only the official scorecard should be signed and turned in. If there is a discrepancy between the official scorecard and the Live Score, then the higher of the 2 scores will be used and cannot be contested. Please make sure when the group is confirming the scorecard and Live Score that all players in the group follow along to verify all scores are accurate before signing the paper scorecard.

16.  Optional Cash games
At each event, players can enter the optional CASH games. Games MUST be entered with cash as the money gets paid to the winners in cash the same day.

Players can pay $10 to get into the Closest to The Pin Contest: We will have a tape measure at four designated (for courses with more than 4) par 3 holes. If you are the closest to the pin on that hole you will win ¼ of the total CTP payout and be entered for the chance to win 75% of the HOLE IN CONTEST PURSE (should no Hole in Ones be made) for the season, if you have entered the contest (SEE THE HOLE IN ONE RULES SHEET).

Players can also pay $15 for their respective flight skins. Outright low score on a hole, amongst the players in the skins game, will win their share of the flight skins pot. Flights may be combined based on the number of flight players for each event. For instance, Champ and A could be 1 group, B have enough players to be in its own group and then C and D are the 3rd group.

Additionally, players can enter the super skins game for $10. These players compete against all the flights and players that entered super skins. Outright low score on a hole, amongst the players in the super skins game, will win their share of the super skins pot.

Any player can enter in as many, as few, or none of these events as they wish. In the case of a 2-day event, players must take care of both days when they register on day 1.

The Hole in One Contest is a ONE TIME $25 buy in before the start of a tournament and can be done at any time during the season as long as you do not have a Hole in One before you buy in (SEE THE HOLE IN ONE RULES SHEET)


Conduct Expected of All Players: Rule 1.2a

  • It declares that players are expected to play in the spirit of the game by:
    • Acting with integrity: For example, by following the Rules, applying all penalties, and being honest in all aspects of play.
    • Showing consideration to others: For example, by playing at a prompt pace, looking out for the safety of others, and not distracting the play of another player.
    • Taking good care of the course: For example, by replacing divots, smoothing bunkers, repairing ball-marks, and not causing unnecessary damage to the course. This includes carts, rakes, flags and any other items deemed part of the course by the Director.


    • Rules 1-24 and the Definitions in these Rules of Golf, and
    • Any “Local Rules” the Committee adopts for the competition or the course.


    • Player Responsibility for Applying the Rules. Players are responsible for applying the Rules to themselves:
    • Players are expected to recognize when they have breached a Rule and to be honest in applying their own penalties.
    • If a player knows that he or she has breached a Rule that involves a penalty and deliberately fails to apply the penalty, the player is disqualified.
    • If two or more players deliberately agree to ignore any Rule or penalty they know applies and any of those players have started the round, they are disqualified (even if they have not yet acted on the agreement).

Cheating during the stipulated tournament round and/or while competing for the Optional Skins and Pins games WILL NOT BE TOLERATED and could lead to EXPULSION from the Tour.




Posted: 5/1/2024 10:56:55 AM