A commission that reviews bills drafted by a national organization that promotes uniform state laws on Wednesday agreed to move forward with legislative framework on college athletes earning compensation from the use of their name, image or likeness.
College athletes have traditionally not been allowed to be compensated for use of their name, image or likeness, despite what the legislative framework describes as the “rapid escalation of the commercialization of intercollegiate sports and the increased opportunities for monetization.”
After increasing pressure from lawmakers at the state and federal level, the National Collegiate Athletic Association in June announced an interim policy allowing student-athletes to engage in name, image and likeness activities as long as they follow laws in the state their university is located in.
According to the bill from the Uniform Law Commission, 19 states had enacted such laws as of June 18. Colorado was not one of them, but that could be set to change .
The Colorado Commission on Uniform State Laws agreed to move forward with the ULC's Uniform College Student Athlete Name, Image, or Likeness Act, a measure approved in July by the organization.
Sen. Bob Gardner, a Colorado Springs Republican who serves as the vice chair of the CCUSL and is one of two lawmakers on the panel, highlighted a sense of urgency to take up the proposal.
“My sense is that this is a topic that if we don't take some action to get the uniform act in front of the General Assembly, there's going to be three other acts out there dealing with this,” he said. “We need to let everyone know we’re interested in moving this.”
The ULC bill sets out ground rules for engaging in name, image and likeness activities that are intended to be consistent with intellectual property law. The proposal also sets limits on the ways universities can help their student-athletes and mandates registration and disclosures on compensation.
Commissioners indicated at the meeting the next steps would involve engaging the athletic departments at universities in the state to gather feedback on the bill.