(a) The Legislature finds and declares all of the following:
(1) That professional athletes licensed under this chapter, as a group, for many reasons, do not retain their earnings, and are often injured or destitute, or both, and unable to take proper care of themselves, whether financially or otherwise, and that the enactment of this article is to serve a public purpose by making provisions for a needy group to insure a modicum of financial security for professional athletes.
(2) Athletes licensed under this chapter may suffer extraordinary disabilities in the normal course of their trade. These may include acute and chronic traumatic brain injuries, resulting from multiple concussions as well as from repeated exposure to a large number of subconcussive punches, eye injuries, including retinal tears, holes, and detachments, and other neurological impairments.
(3) The pension plan of the commission is part of the state’s health and safety regulatory scheme, designed to protect boxers licensed under this chapter from the health-related hazards of their trade. The pension plan addresses those health and safety needs, recognizing the disability and health maintenance expenses those needs may require.
(4) The regulatory system of California is interrelated with the conduct of the trade in every jurisdiction. Athletes licensed under this chapter participate in contests in other states and many athletes who are based in those other jurisdictions may participate in California on a single-event basis.
(5) The outcomes and natures of fights in other jurisdictions are relevant to California regulatory jurisdiction and are routinely monitored for health and safety reasons, so that, for example, a knockout of an athlete licensed under this chapter in another jurisdiction is paid appropriate heed with respect to establishing a waiting period before that athlete may commence fighting in California.
(6) The monitoring of other jurisdictions is an integral part of the health and safety of California athletes licensed under this chapter due to the interstate nature of the trade, and therefore the regulatory scheme for contests and athletes under this chapter should reflect this accordingly.
(b) The provisions of this article pertain only to professional boxers licensed under this chapter.
(Amended by Stats. 2006, Ch. 465, Sec. 13. Effective January 1, 2007.)
(a) The commission shall, consistent with the purposes of this article, establish a pension plan for professional boxers who engage in boxing contests in this state.
(b) The commission shall, consistent with the purposes of this article, establish the method by which the pension plan will be financed, including those who shall contribute to the financing of the pension plan. The method of financing the pension plan may include, but is not limited to, assessments on tickets and contributions by boxers, managers, promoters, or any one or more of these persons, in an amount sufficient to finance the pension plan. For purposes of this section, the term “sufficient” means that the annual contributions shall be calculated to achieve no less than the average level of annual aggregate pension plan contributions from all sources for the period from July 1, 1981, through December 31, 1994, and adjusted thereafter to reflect changes in the Consumer Price Index for California as set forth by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
(c) Any pension plan established by the commission shall be actuarially sound.
(Amended by Stats. 1996, Ch. 377, Sec. 4. Effective January 1, 1997.)
(a) At the time of payment of the fee required by Section 18824, a promoter shall pay to the commission all amounts scheduled for contribution to the pension plan. If the commission, in its discretion, requires pursuant to Section 18881, that contributions to the pension plan be made by the boxer and his or her manager, those contributions shall be made at the time and in the manner prescribed by the commission.
(b) All contributions to finance the pension plan shall be deposited in the State Treasury and credited to the Boxers’ Pension Fund, which is hereby created. Notwithstanding the provisions of Section 13340 of the Government Code, all moneys in the Boxers’ Pension Fund are hereby continuously appropriated to be used exclusively for the purposes and administration of the pension plan.
(c) The Boxers’ Pension Fund is a retirement fund, and no moneys within it shall be deposited or transferred to the General Fund.
(d) The commission has exclusive control of all funds in the Boxers’ Pension Fund. No transfer or disbursement in any amount from this fund shall be made except upon the authorization of the commission and for the purpose and administration of the pension plan.
(e) Except as otherwise provided in this subdivision, the commission or its designee shall invest the money contained in the Boxers’ Pension Fund according to the same standard of care as provided in Section 16040 of the Probate Code. The commission has exclusive control over the investment of all moneys in the Boxers’ Pension Fund. Except as otherwise prohibited or restricted by law, the commission may invest the moneys in the fund through the purchase, holding, or sale of any investment, financial instrument, or financial transaction that the commission in its informed opinion determines is prudent.
(f) The administrative costs associated with investing, managing, and distributing the Boxers’ Pension Fund shall be limited to no more than 2 percent of the corpus of the fund. Diligence shall be exercised by administrators in order to lower the fund’s expense ratio as far below 2 percent as feasible and appropriate. The commission shall report to the Legislature on the impact of this provision during the next regularly scheduled sunset review.
(Amended by Stats. 2013, Ch. 370, Sec. 19. Effective January 1, 2014.)
(a) A promoter may, but is not required to, add to the price of each ticket sold for a professional boxing contest, an amount specifically designated on the ticket for contribution as a donation, either or both, to the pension plan established pursuant to Section 18881. The additional amount shall not be subject to the admissions tax required by Section 18824 or any other deductions. Nothing in this section shall authorize the addition of such amounts to less than all the tickets sold for the professional boxing contest involved. The promoter shall pay additional contributions collected in accordance with Section 18881.
(b) Any additional contributions received pursuant to this section shall not be considered to offset any of the contributions required by the commission under Section 18881.
(Added by Stats. 1985, Ch. 1092, Sec. 2.)
In addition to any other form in which retirement benefits may be distributed under the pension plan, the commission may, in its discretion, award to a covered boxer a medical early retirement benefit in the amount contained in the covered boxers’ pension plan account at the time the commission makes this award and in the manner provided in the regulations governing the boxers’ pension plan. This benefit shall be in lieu of a pension.
(Repealed and added by Stats. 1996, Ch. 377, Sec. 8. Effective January 1, 1997.)