New York state senator proposes bill to allow college athletes to be compensated

A bill proposed by a New York state senator says that athletes should get 15 percent of their school's ticket sales revenue. (Photo by Michael Berg/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
A bill proposed by a New York state senator says that athletes should get 15 percent of their school's ticket sales revenue. (Photo by Michael Berg/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Add New York to the list of states with politicians advocating for the rights of college athletes.

Sen. Kevin Parker of Brooklyn has introduced the “New York collegiate athletic participation compensation act.” The bill is intended to allow college athletes in the state to be able to make money off their name, image, and likeness through outside endorsements and other endeavors. That’s similar to the bill that’s been passed in California and could become law if signed by Gov. Gavin Newsom.

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But Parker’s bill goes further than the California bill. In addition to allowing athletes to take outside money while in college, the bill says “at the conclusion of each school year, each college shall take fifteen percent of the revenue earned from ticket sales to all athletic events and divide and pay such amount to all student-athletes.”

It also asks for each school to have a fund to pay players who suffer long-term or career-ending injuries while in college.

The New York state legislature is not in regular session again until January, so don’t expect any action on Parker’s bill in the near future. He told ESPN that the bill was about “equity.”

"It's about equity," Parker said. "These young people are adding their skill, talent and labor to these universities. ... You don't need the shortcuts and the end-arounds because now we're providing some real support for these student-athletes."

South Carolina legislators want to act too

Two legislators in South Carolina are aiming to introduce legislation in their state in early 2020 to allow college athletes to get paid off their image and likeness. The South Carolina bill would also propose that every college athlete in the state gets a $5,000 stipend from his or her school.

The California bill is obviously the closest bill to becoming law since it’s passed through both the state’s assembly and senate. If it’s signed into law by Gov. Gavin Newsom it would go into effect in January of 2023.

The NCAA is adamantly opposed to California’s bill and has even gone so far as to call it unconstitutional for reasons that aren’t exactly clear. It’s undoubtedly opposed to what would be proposed in both South Carolina and New York as well.

But the increasing number of legislators across the country introducing these types of bills makes it clearer and clearer that the NCAA needs to adjust its rules that prevent players from making money off their image rights while in school. The NCAA has a working group that’s currently examining the image rights issue and it could do the governing body a big favor if it recommended sweeping changes for the NCAA to make itself without any state governments having to get involved.

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Nick Bromberg is a writer for Yahoo Sports.

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