One of the main supporters of a bill in the California senate that would let college athletes in the state get revenue-sharing payments from their schools said Monday night that the bill will be put off until 2024.
Ramogi Huma, who is the executive director of the California-based National College Players Association, said that the bill’s sponsor, Assemblymember Chris Holden, has chosen to make the bill last for two years.
This is good news for the NCAA and schools across the country, at least in the short term. They are afraid that if California makes this bill a law, other states will follow suit, which would completely change college sports.
The tweet below verifies the news:
A California bill that would allow college athletes in the state to receive revenue-sharing payments from their schools will be delayed until 2024. https://t.co/i1kHzwXxv8
— USA TODAY Sports (@usatodaysports) July 4, 2023
The California government works in sessions that last for two years and start on odd-numbered years. State law says that if a bill is brought up in the first year of a session, a member can choose to keep talking about it in the second year.
The Assembly passed Holden’s bill on June 1. The Senate Education Committee is going to talk about it and vote on it on Wednesday. The Senate Judiciary Committee had put the bill on its agenda for July 11 meetings, but only if it passed.
On Monday night, though, the bill was crossed off of the Education Committee’s Wednesday list. The date for policy committees to pass bills is July 14, 2023. If the bill had passed the Education and Judiciary committees, it would have still needed to pass the Senate Appropriations Committee after the summer break.
Huma said, “The bill is still good.” “But this is a very large bill… I think Assemblymember Holden is just listening to those who disagree and thinking about how to change the bill.”
Holden could not be reached right away to get his opinion. Because each house of the legislature usually spends the first half of each year looking at bills that were brought up by their own members, it is possible that the Senate won’t take up this bill again until June 2024.
The NCAA and California schools have made it clear that they don’t like the bill. In April, the group spoke out in a strong and extremely early way.
The Women’s Sports Foundation and several state sports governing bodies in the U.S., such as USA Swimming and USA Track and Field, have also spoken out against the idea.
They are worried about how the bill will affect schools’ budgets and if it will cause schools to cut funding for some low-revenue sports or even try to get rid of them.
They have also said that the bill could lead to lawmakers micromanaging college sports because it sets up a complex system of rules, regulations, and enforcement. The staff report on the bill from the education committee is 41 pages long.
The bill easily passed through two Assembly committees, including the one that Holden chairs, the Appropriations Committee. But on the Assembly floor, 42 people voted for the bill, which was one more than the minimum needed for it to pass. Only 15 people voted against it, and 23 members didn’t vote.
More than half of the members who didn’t vote are women who are Democrats, the same party as Holden. Holden said during debate on the floor that he had talked with the California Legislative Women’s Caucus the day before and changed the bill in response to their concerns about how it might affect women’s sports.
On the day of the vote, the actual legislative text of the changes wasn’t released right away, and it wasn’t made public until June 19.
Huma said, “I think the fact that the (Senate Education Committee) hearing date is coming up so quickly” was one reason Holden chose to put off taking any more action on the measure.
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