USOC have released a position paper on anti-doping reform today ©USOC

A radical plan to exclude anybody involved in sporting governance from a World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) Board position has been included among a set of United States Olympic Committee (USOC) reform proposals.

The proposals, included in a "position paper on anti-doping reform" published today, were announced following discussions with the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) Quarterly Board meeting in Colorado Springs.

Producing a "clearly independent anti-doping body with overriding global authority" is the prevailing theme of the paper.

Greater funding and improved support for whistleblowers are other key ideas.

But the section on independence is the most eyecatching element and is something that puts them on a possible collision course with the International Olympic Committee (IOC).

"WADA should be governed independently of the sports organisations it watches and works with, and needs to have clear, transparent policies on governance," the proposals state.

"No person serving in a governance role in the IOC, any NOC (National Olympic Committee), any IF (International Federation), or ANOC (Association of National Olympic Committees) should also serve in a governance role for WADA."

If implemented, every current sporting representative in WADA would be ineligible to stand. 

It is thought that the central element of the idea is to avoid a conflict of interests wherein WADA officials also hold influential sporting positions.

For instance, WADA President Sir Craig Reedie was himself a member of the IOC Executive Board and a vice-president for the first three years of his tenure until last year.

USADA, whose head is Travis Tygart, have praised USOC for their anti-doping proposals ©USOC
USADA, whose head is Travis Tygart, have praised USOC for their anti-doping proposals ©USOC

No USOC or National Federation member has any sort of governance role within USADA.

But, while accepting of this problem and adamant to separate sporting interests from testing or sanctioning, the IOC are thought to believe that a complete absence of sporting officials from WADA's Foundation Board and Executive Committee is a step too far. 

However, USADA - which receives approximately 33 per cent of its funding from USOC - and other National Anti-Doping Organisations have welcomed today's paper.

“The positions are sensible, clear and very much in line with the Copenhagen Declaration," a spokesperson told insidethegames.

"It’s especially encouraging to see a National Olympic Committee publicly reiterate the need for a truly independent WADA - that’s an important step in the right direction.”

International National Anti-Doping Organisations (iNADO) chief executive Joseph De Pencier added: "We've said for a long time that true and lasting anti-doping reform has to start with independence.

"For the NADOs out there fighting for a fair and level playing field, it is really encouraging to see such an influential body, with is both the NOC and the National Paralympic Committee, step up and reiterate many of the NADO reform principles - including a truly independent WADA - that we laid out in the Copenhagen Declaration last August."

Reforms suggested in the USOC paper would radically altar the nature of WADA governance ©Getty Images
Reforms suggested in the USOC paper would radically altar the nature of WADA governance ©Getty Images

Other ideas proposed by USOC include "robust support" for investigative work to uncover systematic doping.

"Whistleblowers must be encouraged to share what they know and protected against retribution," the paper adds.

"This enhanced fight against doping requires increased investment. 

"The IOC, the NOCs and the IFs should all contribute on a fair and equitable basis, complementing Governmental support."

It comes as USOC continue to play a balancing act between supporting radical American calls for anti-doping reform and avoiding upsetting sporting stakeholders as Los Angeles bids against Paris for the 2024 Summer Olympic and Paralympic Games.

WADA are due to discuss reforms at a Governance Group meeting tomorrow in Lausanne.