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Kemp signs bill to compensate student athletes

Governor Brian Kemp signed HB 617 on Thursday. That bill allows college athletes to be compensated for the use of their name and likeness.
Georgia Governor's Office

Governor Brian Kemp visited Athens this morning to sign a bill that could put extra money in the pockets of college athletes.

Although many college athletes are almost as well known as their professional counterparts, they can’t actually make money off their name the same way a pro athlete could.

That can be especially galling for some student athletes, who see other entities selling jerseys and other memorabilia with their name and number. House Bill 617 - signed by Kemp this morning at UGA’s Sanford Stadium - changes that. The state’s first name, image and likeness bill, House Bill 617 enables college athletes throughout the state to profit off the use of their name and likeness while still being considered a student and amateur-level athlete.

"It is well past time for college athletes to be fairly compensated for all that they do for our universities and our state," Kemp said. "It is our hope that this bill will encourage more student athletes to come to Georgia."

Alexia Ridley joined WUGA as Television and Radio News Anchor and Reporter in 2013. When WUGA TV concluded operations, she became the primary Reporter for WUGA Radio. Alexia came to Athens from Macon where she served as the News Director and show host for WGXA TV. She's a career journalist and Savannah native hailing from the University of Michigan. However, Alexia considers herself an honorary UGA DAWG!