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Calendar No. 567

105th Congress REPORT


2d Session 105–325

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ON S. 2119 SEPTEMBER 10, 1998.—Ordered to be printed



59–010 WASHINGTON 1998




JOHN MCCAIN, Arizona, Chairman TED STEVENS, Alaska ERNEST F. HOLLINGS, South Carolina CONRAD BURNS, Montana DANIEL K. INOUYE, Hawaii SLADE GORTON, Washington WENDELL H. FORD, Kentucky TRENT LOTT, Mississippi JOHN D. ROCKEFELLER IV, West Virginia KAY BAILEY HUTCHISON, Texas JOHN F. KERRY, Massachusetts OLYMPIA SNOWE, Maine JOHN B. BREAUX, Louisiana JOHN ASHCROFT, Missouri RICHARD H. BRYAN, Nevada BILL FRIST, Tennessee BYRON L. DORGAN, North Dakota SPENCER ABRAHAM, Michigan RON WYDEN, Oregon SAM BROWNBACK, Kansas JOHN RAIDT, Staff Director MARK BUSE, Policy Director MARTHA P. ALLBRIGHT, General Counsel IVAN A. SCHLAGER, Democratic Chief Counsel and Staff Director JAMES S. W. DREWRY, Democratic General Counsel ii Calendar No. 567 105TH CONGRESS REPORT


2d Session 105–325 " !


1998 SEPTEMBER 10, 1998.—Ordered to be printed Mr. MCCAIN, from the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, submitted the following


[To accompany S. 2119] The Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, to which was referred the bill (S. 2119), ‘‘A Bill to amend the Amateur Sports Act to strengthen provisions protecting the right of athletes to compete, recognize the Paralympics and growth of disabled sports, improve the

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The purpose of the Olympic and Amateur Sports Act Amendments of 1998 is to update the Amateur Sports Act of 1978. The United States Olympic Committee (USOC) was originally incorporated in 1950 under the ‘‘Act to incorporate the United States Olympic Association.’’ In 1964, the name was changed to the United States Olympic Committee. In 1978, the 1950 Act was substantially modified by the Amateur Sports Act. The Act has not been modified since 1978.

The 1978 Act was based on recommendations of President Ford’s Commission on Olympic Sports, which had worked from 1975 until 1977 to determine how to correct factional disputes, between sports organizations, which were depriving many athletes of the opportunity to compete. Senator Stevens served on that Commission.

When the Commission’s report was delivered to Congress, the Chairman of the Commerce Committee, Warren Magnuson, asked Senator Stevens to head up the Commerce Committee’s review of the report. Ultimately, that review led to the passage of the Amateur Sports Act of 1978.

Many believe the 1978 Act needs to be updated due to several significant changes which have occurred in Olympic and amateur

sports in the past 20 years. Those changes include the following:

(1) the schedule for the Olympics and Winter Olympics has been altered so that an Olympic event occurs every two years, instead of every four—significantly increasing the workload of the U.S.

Olympic Committee; (2) sports have begun to allow professional athletes to compete in some Olympic events; (3) even sports still considered ‘‘amateur’’ have athletes with greater financial opportunities and professional responsibilities than were ever considered in 1978; and (4) the Paralympics—the Olympics for disabled amateur athletes—have grown significantly in size and prestige.

The legislation would leave in place the existing structure created by the 1978 Act. The bill would make modifications in discrete areas to address defined concerns.

The bill would make the following primary changes to the 1978 Act.

(1) The title of the underlying law would be changed to the ‘‘Olympic and Amateur Sports Act’’ to reflect the participation of professional as well as amateur athletes in the Olympic games.

(2) A number of measures would be added to strengthen the provisions which protect athletes’ rights to compete.

(3) The ability of the USOC to resolve disputes—particularly disputes that arise close to the start of the Olympics, Paralympics, or Pan-American Games—would be improved. In addition, modifications are made to reduce the legal costs and administrative burdens of the USOC during dispute resolution.

(4) The legislation would fully incorporate the Paralympics into the Amateur Sports Act and update the existing provisions affecting disabled athletes.

(5) Improvements would be made to the notification requirements for when a National Governing Body (NGB) has been put on probation or is being challenged.

(6) The legislation would increase the reporting requirements of the USOC and the NGBs with respect to sports opportunities for women, minorities, and disabled individuals.

(7) The USOC would be required to report to Congress in five years with any additional changes that may be needed to the Act.


The Commerce Committee held three hearings to assess the need for modifications to the 1978 Act. At the first two hearings (held on August 11, 1994 and October 18, 1995) witnesses identified where the Amateur Sports Act was showing signs of strain. At the third hearing, held on April 21, 1997 at the Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, discussion focused on solutions to the problems which had been identified in the earlier hearings.

3 On January 26, 1998, Senator Stevens held an informal working session in the Commerce Committee hearing room to discuss with interested parties possible amendments to the 1978 Act.

Senators Stevens and Campbell introduced S. 2119, the Olympic and Amateur Sports Act Amendments of 1998, on May 22, 1998.

In open executive session on July 29, 1998, the Committee, by voice vote, ordered the bill reported with an amendment in the nature of a substitute.


In accordance with paragraph 11(a) of rule XXVI of the Standing Rules of the Senate and section 403 of the Congressional Budget Act of 1974, the Committee provides the following cost estimate,

prepared by the Congressional Budget Office:



Washington, DC, August 17, 1998.

Hon. JOHN MCCAIN, Chairman, Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, U.S. Senate, Washington, DC.

DEAR MR. CHAIRMAN: The Congressional Budget Office has prepared the enclosed cost estimate for S. 2119, Olympic and Amateur Sports Act Amendments of 1998.

If you wish further details on this estimate, we will be pleased to provide them. The CBO staff contacts are Mark Hadley (for federal costs); Pepper Santalucia (for the state and local impact); and Jean Wooster (for the private-sector impact).

Sincerely, JUNE E. O’NEILL, Director.



S. 2119—Olympic and Amateur Sports Act Amendments of 1998 Summary: S. 2119 would amend the federal law incorporating the U.S. Olympic Committee (USOC). The bill would strengthen the ability of the USOC to resolve disputes with and among athletes. It also would provide the Paralympics and Pan-American Games with the same recognition and trademark protection as the Olympics. CBO estimates that S. 2119 could increase federal costs, but any such costs would be subject to appropriation and would not be significant. S. 2119 would not affect direct spending or receipts;

therefore, pay-as-you-go procedures would not apply.

The bill contains an intergovernmental mandate as defined in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act (UMRA), but CBO estimates that states would not incur any costs to comply with the mandate.

S. 2119 would impose private-sector mandates, as defined by UMRA, on the United States Olympic Committee (USOC), a private-sector entity, and businesses that use the name Pan-American. CBO estimates that the total direct costs of the mandates would not exceed the annual threshold for private-sector mandates established in UMRA ($100 million in 1996, adjusted for inflation).

4 Estimated cost to the Federal Government: S. 2119 would allow the USOC the option of having civil action brought against the USOC in a state court adjudicated in U.S. District Court. Although this provision could increase the number of cases in federal courts, CBO estimates that the additional costs would not be significant and would be subject to appropriation.

Pay-as-you-go considerations: None.

Estimated impact on State, local, and tribal governments: Section 10 of the bill would prohibit state courts from granting injunctive relief against the U.S. Olympic Committee when adjudicating certain lawsuits. This prohibition would be an intergovernmental mandate as defined in UMRA. However, because the prohibition would not require state courts to devote more resources to these cases, CBO estimates that states would not incur any new costs to comply with the mandate.

Estimated impact on the private section: S. 2119 would impose private-sector mandates, as defined by UMRA, on the United States Olympic Committee and businesses that use the name PanAmerican. CBO estimates that the total direct costs of the mandates would not exceed the annual threshold for private-sector mandates established in UMRA ($100 million in 1996, adjusted for inflation).

This bill would impose several private-sector mandates on the USOC, with the most costly one requiring that the USOC hire an ombudsman for athletes. Other mandates include a report to the Congress on any further additional changes and increased reporting requirements on sports opportunities for women, minorities, and disabled individuals. According to a representative of the USOC, most of the mandates would impose minimal additional costs since those requirements are consistent with current USOC practice. USOC estimates that the cost to hire an ombudsman would be approximately $100,000 a year.

S. 2119 would not allow the use of the name Pan-American for the purpose of trade, to induce the sale of any goods or services, or to promote any theatrical exhibition, athletic performance, or competition without the consent of the USOC. Based on a search of such names through the Internet and a discussion with the U.S.

Patent and Trademark Office, CBO estimates that fewer than 1,000 businesses use the name Pan-American or a variant. According to a trademark attorney, the cost for a business to change its name would range from less than $500 to $20,000, with most businesses falling in the lower end of the range. Thus, CBO estimates that the total cost to businesses to comply with the private-sector mandate in the bill would be well below the statutory threshold established in UMRA.

Estimate prepared by: Federal Costs: Mark Hadley. Impact on State, Local, and Tribal Governments: Pepper Santalucia. Impact on the Private Sector: Jean Wooster.

Estimate approved by: Paul N. Van de Water, Assistant Director for Budget Analysis.


The bill, as reported, would update the Amateurs Sports Act of 1978 to reflect developments in Olympic Sports in the past 20 5 years. The legislation will have no effect on the number of individuals regulated or their personal privacy. The legislation should have no significant economic impact nor should it change existing paperwork requirements.


Section 1. Short title Section 1 provides that the bill may be referred to as the ‘‘Olympic and Amateur Sports Act Amendments of 1998’’.

Section 2. Olympic and Amateur Sports Act; amendment of act Section 2 changes the title of the underlying Act to the ‘‘Olympic and Amateur Sports Act.

’’ Section 3. Definitions Section 3 defines the term ‘‘paralympic sports organization’’.

Section 4. Objects and purposes Section 4 provides for full recognition of the Paralympic games by the Act.

The bill contains numerous other changes to achieve this recognition. In sum, these changes would give the USOC the same duties with respect to the Paralympic Games as it has with the Olympic Games. The USOC would ‘‘either directly or [by delegation to NGB]’’: select athletes for U.S. teams, represent the United States in relations with the International Paralympic Committee, organize and finance U.S. teams, and provide equitable and fair dispute resolution procedures for disabled athletes. In addition, the USOC would be required to allow paralympic sports organizations to join the USOC and to use and protect the trademarks of Paralympics.

Section 4(3) would eliminate references in the bill to ‘‘handicapped individuals’’ and insert instead the term ‘‘amateur athletes with disabilities.’’ The use of the new words would update terminology and, more importantly, make clear that disabled athletes are ‘‘amateur athletes’’ under the Act’s existing definition, provided that they meet the eligibility standards of their NGB as required by the existing definition of ‘‘amateur athlete’’.

Section 5. Powers of corporation Paragraphs (1) through (4) make various changes to provide for the complete recognition of the Paralympics.

Paragraph (5) would provide that the USOC may elect to remove to Federal court civil actions brought against the USOC in State court if those actions relate solely to the USOC’s responsibilities under the Act.

Section 6. Membership; representation Section 6(a) provides for the complete recognition of the Paralympics and paralympic sports organizations.

Section 6(b) of the bill would amend the Act to require an Athletes’ Advisory Council (AAC). Currently, the AAC exists but was created as part of the USOC constitution and bylaws and is not recognized in the Act.

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