The bill would let college athletes hire agents and be paid for the use of their name, image or likeness. And it would stop universities and the NCAA from banning athletes who take the money.
The Assembly passed the bill 66-0 on Monday, a few days after the bill got an endorsement from NBA superstar Lebron James, who did not go to college.
Everyone is California- call your politicians and tell them to support SB 206! This law is a GAME CHANGER. College athletes can responsibly get paid for what they do and the billions they create.— LeBron James (@KingJames) September 5, 2019
Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders also weighed in on the debate, backing up James' comment.
College athletes are workers. Pay them. https://t.co/PNEefTbS2O— Bernie Sanders (@BernieSanders) September 6, 2019
Universities oppose the bill, and the NCAA has warned the bill could mean California universities would be ineligible for national championships.
The California Senate must take a final vote on the bill by Friday.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.