COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — The Republican-controlled Ohio House has approved a proposal that says college athletes are not employees under state law.
The measure was approved as part of a broader bill Wednesday that heads next to the Ohio Senate.
It comes after a landmark National Labor Relations Board decision last month involving Northwestern University’s football team. That ruling says full scholarship players can be considered employees and thus are eligible to form a union.
If it holds, the ruling could have widespread repercussions in the multibillion-dollar college sports industry.
Ohio lawmakers are among the first in the nation to react legislatively to the ruling. The provision’s supporters say it clarifies state law and could have little effect.
The Ohio AFL-CIO accuses majority Republicans of trying to “engineer punitive proposals.”