California Governor Gavin Newsom signed SB206 also known as the Fair Play to Pay Act. This makes California the first state that allows collegiate athletes to profit for their image and likeness. The bill will go into affect in January of 2023. Governor Newsom, signed the bill on LeBron James’ HBO show The Shop, seen below.
Colleges reap billions from student athletes but block them from earning a single dollar. That’s a bankrupt model.— Gavin Newsom (@GavinNewsom) September 30, 2019
I just signed the Fair Play to Pay Act with @KingJames -- making CA the first state to allow student athletes to profit off their name, image, and likeness. pic.twitter.com/aWE9OL9r1v
The new law will not force schools to pay the athletes like employees, but simply makes it legal for said athletes to earn money by selling their name, image and likeness beyond the campus. Another caveat of the law it allows athletes to hire a licensed agent. There are still limitations though, such as the signing of endorsement deals that directly conflicts with those of the University.
The NCAA responded to the signing of the bill as followed, to ESPN:
The NCAA, in response to Newsom’s signing of the bill, said it would continue its effort to make “adjustments” to its rules “that are both realistic in modern society and tied to higher education.”
”We will consider next steps in California while our members move forward with ongoing efforts to make adjustments to NCAA name, image and likeness rules that are both realistic in modern society and tied to higher education,” the NCAA said in a statement. “As more states consider their own specific legislation related to this topic, it is clear that a patchwork of different laws from different states will make unattainable the goal of providing a fair and level playing field for 1,100 campuses and nearly half a million student-athletes nationwide.”
There is still a few years before the law goes into effect and it will be interesting to monitor the direction other states and NCAA decide to go.