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Published: Tuesday, 4/8/2014

Ohio labor group blasts college-athlete amendment

Labor group questions Ohio proposal that makes clear college athletes are not employees

ASSOCIATED PRESS

COLUMBUS — A labor organization in Ohio is questioning a change made to a state budget bill that clarifies that college athletes are not employees under state law.

The move by a House committee comes after last month’s landmark decision by a National Labor Relations Board official involving the Northwestern University football team. The 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.

Ohio AFL-CIO President Tim Burga accuses Republicans who control Ohio’s House of trying to “engineer punitive proposals.”

Committee Chairman Ron Amstutz has said the change could have little effect. But he says if it comes up, it will be in the law.

The bill is on track for a committee vote today.



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