Contrary to reports, CBA does not contradict itself with regards to contract investigations

Probably my favorite picture from all of 2009-2010.

Ed. Note: Sorry for all the legal, CBA-related stuff the last two days. It's August and there's nothing else going on. Plus, this stuff is still important, as far from the hockey rink as it may seem.

A Tim Panaccio report on CSNPhilly.com -- which we cited yesterday -- was updated at some point since to include a bit of news on the collective bargaining agreement. The claim it makes is that Article 11.5 (d) of the CBA, the section on the "Filing and Approval Process" when it comes to contracts, contradicts Article 26.10 (d), the section on "Investigations" of the "No Circumvention" rule.

It is true that 26.10 (d) does contradict 11.5 (d), but that's only if you ignore 26.10 (b), which is truly the relevant portion here. Let's take a look at all three of these sections after the jump.

Here's the CSN claim. Article 11.5 (d) ...

(d) From the date which is seven (7) days prior to the commencement of the Regular Season, through the end of the League Year, the League shall approve and register, or reject, an SPC by no later than 5:00 p.m. New York time on the day following Central Registry's receipt of such SPC (provided it was received by Central Registry by 5:00 p.m. New York time; SPCs received by Central Registry after 5:00 p.m. New York time will be deemed to have been received on the following day for purposes of this provision); at all other times the League shall have five (5) days from the day following Central Registry's receipt of an SPC (provided it was received by Central Registry by 5:00 p.m. New York time; SPCs received by Central Registry after 5:00 p.m. New York time will be deemed to have been received on the following day for purposes of this provision) to take such action. If no action is taken by the League, either to approve and register, or to reject, an SPC during the applicable time period set forth in the prior sentence, such SPC shall be deemed to be approved and registered.

.. contradicts Article 26.10 (d) ...

(d) There shall be no limitation of time barring the investigation of a Circumvention by the Commissioner.

Again, at first glance, this seems true. But that's only if you're ignoring section 26.10 (b), which states the following ...

(b) The Investigator's authority to investigate (i) a possible Circumvention relating to an SPC shall in no way be limited by the fact that such SPC was approved and registered by Central Registry pursuant to Article 11 of this Agreement; or (ii) a possible Circumvention relating to financial reporting by a Club, Clubs or the League shall in no way be limited by the fact that the Initial, Interim or Final HRR Report has been issued by the Independent Accountants.

It's a lot of confusing legal jargon, but 26.10 (b) basically says that despite Article 11, if the reasoning for an investigation has to do with circumvention, it doesn't matter if the contract has been registered last week or four years ago. Investigations can still be carried out, and that's where 26.10 (d) comes in. That investigation can drag on for a month, a year, three years, or however long the Commissioner decides.

There's no contradiction here -- just a lot of different spare parts that, believe it or not, do make sense when they are put together.

The full CBA as a PDF can be viewed here. Thanks to DragonGirl0583 for pointing this little portion out.

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