OLR Bill Analysis
AN ACT CONCERNING OPERATORS OF ATHLETIC ACTIVITIES, COACHES AND REFEREES AND THE EMPLOYER-EMPLOYEE RELATIONSHIP.
This bill exempts coaches and referees who work for private or public athletic programs, other than public school districts, from employer-employee rules for purposes of unemployment taxes and compensation. Under the bill, as of October 1, 2016 no employer-employee relationship is deemed to exist between certain operators of organized athletic activities and certain individuals employed as coaches or referees of those organized athletic activities, except such operators and individuals can mutually agree, in writing, to enter into an employer-employee relationship.
This means the employer will not be required to pay unemployment taxes and the employee will not be eligible for unemployment compensation from the employer in the event of the employee's loss of employment. In general, private sector employers pay unemployment taxes on the first $15,000 in annual wages paid to each of their employees.
Under current law, the employer-employee relationship is determined by a multi-step test that includes whether the employee is under the direct supervision and control of the employer.
EFFECTIVE DATE: Upon passage
DEFINITIONS AND EXEMPTIONS
“Organized athletic activity” means an activity involving participants who either pay a participation fee or whose cost is sponsored by the operator and: (1) engage in an organized athletic game or competition against another team, club, or entity or in a practice for such game or competition or (2) attend an organized athletic camp or clinic to train or prepare for a game or competition.
The bill exempts any (1) college or university athletic activity, (2) public school intramural or interscholastic athletics, or (3) athletic activity that is incidental to a nonathletic program or an academic lesson.
The bill defines “operator” as any municipality or business or nonprofit organization that conducts, coordinates, organizes or otherwise oversees an organized athletic activity.
The definitions for “coach” and “referee” include volunteers or someone who is paid. “Coach” also includes a head coach, assistant coach, clinician, manager, instructor, or anyone in a similarly supervisory position. “Referee” includes a referee, official, umpire, or judge, or anyone in a similarly supervisory position.
Labor and Public Employees Committee
Joint Favorable Substitute