Ohio panel: College athletes aren't employees

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Associated Press

Posted on April 8, 2014 at 8:35 PM

Updated Tuesday, Apr 8 at 9:33 PM

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — An Ohio legislative panel has approved a budget proposal saying college athletes are not employees under state law.

The proposal comes after last month's landmark decision by a National Labor Relations Board official involving the Northwestern University football team.

The NLRB ruling says full scholarship players can be considered employees and thus can form a union. If the ruling holds up, it could have widespread repercussions in the multibillion-dollar college sports industry.

Supporters say the bill approved Tuesday clarifies Ohio law. House Finance and Appropriations Committee Chairman Ron Amstutz (AHM'-stuts) says the change could have little effect but if the employment issue comes up, it will be in state law.

The Ohio AFL-CIO accused majority Republicans of trying to "engineer punitive proposals."

The full House could vote Wednesday afternoon.

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