Group 3 rugby league clubs have been put on notice with fines of up to $2000 to be dished out every week until the end of the season.
The hard-line stance could potentially cost a team a semi-final berth if a club's other grades didn't tow the line.
It comes after Group 3 rugby league directors reached the end of their tether following a swearing crackdown which started a month ago that chief executive Mal Drury claims has been ignored.
"Players and benches need to tow the line. They've been asked nicely and some clubs are conforming with our directive and some clubs aren't taking any notice at all," Drury said.
"At our meeting on Tuesday night's [the clubs] are going to be fined and they are heavy fines because we're sick to death of clubs and players ignoring our directives."
Each grade will be fined $500 every week if they are found guilty of audible swearing throughout any match which puts the onus back on the clubs to control their players.
There is the risk that any of a club's teams could be excluded from playing finals if the fines are not paid before the finals series kicks off in September.
"If it comes to semi-final time and your club is not financial, your club will not be playing in the semi-final series and that's always been the rule," Drury said.
"None of this is new, it's just something that hasn't been implemented for so long. You need to be financial to play finals."
Port Sharks coach James Kelly labelled the group's overall stance as 'ridiculous' although he said there were ways a club could recoup the fine money from a first grade player.
The under-18, reserve grade and ladies league tag players, however, were different.
"It's unfair that a club should have to fork out up to $2000 for players using a word. At the end of the day we're a rugby league team, not a debating team," he said.
"If a first grader swears too much, we can dock his match payments, but for an 18-year-old kid and the girls, they're not getting paid so I don't know how it's going to work."
He felt reverting back to the rule of referees awarding penalties against teams when in possession during a game was a better outcome for everyone than a hit to the hip pocket.
"A penalty is a sufficient enough penalty for someone swearing; it's more than enough. It's too much," he said.
Level of support
Drury had a level of support from Wauchope Blues coach Beau Kettle, although Kettle agreed the financial penalty was harsh.
"If that's what it takes and there are clubs that are playing up all the time and they aren't learning their lesson... maybe that's the way to go about it," he said.
"If [a club] is not financial [by the finals] they should have thought about it the first time they got the warning or the fine."
Macleay Valley Mustangs coach Ant Cowan admitted players did get frustrated in the heat of the battle, but a blanket rule and punishment wasn't going to work.
"You should understand that if we swear it's because we made a mistake on the field so it should be acceptable," he said.
"But if you're intentionally directing it at a player or an official then there are consequences."
He echoed Kelly and Kettle's sentiments that the harsh penalty was over-the-top.
"Say you have a four-team finals and they're financially struggling... you're not going to have any finals, so who loses out on money? The clubs don't, the Group does," he said.
"I don't know what they're trying to achieve; there's got to be other ways around it because we're grown men and there's going to be swearing involved."
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