California Seeks to Level the Paying Field for Female Athletes

The new bill applies to prize money for surfing, cycling, open-water swimming, triathlons and other sports.

Eying a large gap between what male athletes and female athletes earn for their performance, a new bill was introduced to require California athletic contests to award equal prize money regardless of gender. The bill, authored by Assemblymember Tasha Boerner Horvath, would mandate that California’s State Lands Commission grants permits only for competitions that pay male and female athletes the same.

According to CNN, “Boerner Horvath got the idea for the bill from the State Lands Commission’s 2018 decision about the Mavericks surfing contest in Half Moon Bay. The commission wrote in its lease agreement that the contest must award equal prize money to women and men competitors. It was the first year that women were able to compete in the event.

“Cori Schumacher, a three-time women’s longboard champion, saw the State Lands Commission’s move and thought it should be codified into state law to impact sports beyond surfing. She spoke with Boerner Horvath, who agreed and introduced the bill in February after she took state office in 2018.”

You can read more here.