VICTORIA - Government has approved a regulation setting May 30, 2013 as the effective date for the Athletic Commissioner Act to come into force and for the BC Athletic Commissioner to begin operations, fulfilling a commitment made by Premier Christy Clark.
This new provincial regulatory regime will enhance the safety of participants in professional boxing and mixed martial arts (MMA) through consistent regulation. The BC Athletic Commissioner will be responsible for administering a provincial standard of qualifications and safety protocols for all participants and officials through a uniform licensing and permitting framework, and ensuring compliance with the act and its regulation.
The provincial commissioner will replace local commissions (authorized under the Community Charter and the Vancouver Charter) that currently regulate these sports in their communities, thereby providing a more consistent regulatory approach.
Community, Sport and Cultural Development Minister Bill Bennett -
"There is no question mixed martial arts has rapidly grown into a tremendously popular sport here in British Columbia and across North America. A key priority for this government is to ensure that these activities take place in the safest possible environment. Regulation at the provincial level will also mean that MMA is regulated in a consistent way in all areas of the province. This benefits both participants and the MMA industry."
- The act comes into force effective May 30, 2013. Local athletic commissions will retain responsibility for boxing and MMA events authorized before May 30, 2013.
- A process for hiring a commissioner is underway.
- BC will join Manitoba, Ontario, Quebec and Nova Scotia in the regulation of MMA and boxing at the provincial level.
- Professional kickboxing and Muay Thai kickboxing will not be regulated under the Athletic Commissioner Act. They may be added at a later date.
Ministry of Community, Sport and Cultural Development