Racing industry officials in Kentucky met for a few hours the evening of Feb. 18 to wrap up loose ends on legislation that would authorize video lottery terminals at racetracks in the state. Officials are tentatively scheduled to meet with leaders in the House of Representatives Feb. 20.
Legislation that would remove impediments to horse racing in Virginia passed the state Senate Jan. 29. The bill, sponsored by Sen. Kenneth Stolle, was approved by a 27-12 vote. It now goes to General Laws Subcommittee in the House of Delegates.
The Pennsylvania Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association, the statewide organization representing owners and trainers at Philadelphia Park, has endorsed legislation sponsored by Rep. John Taylor to allow slot machines at Pennsylvania's four licensed racetracks.
Democrats forced a new farm bill through a Senate committee Thursday after giving Southern senators more money for big farms and adding a dairy program that could raise retail milk prices. Provisions for loans that would aid farmers impacted by mare reproductive loss syndrome are included in the bill that cleared the Senate Agriculture Committee.
Congressman Robert Goodlatte on Thursday introduced the Combating Illegal Gambling Reform and Modernization Act, which he said is designed to crack down on the problem of illegal off-shore gambling. A release from Goodlatte's office said illegal off-shore gambling "sucks billions of dollars per year out of the U.S. economy, serves as a vehicle for money-laundering, undermines families, and threatens the ability of states to enact and enforce their own laws."
Officials in New York gave final approval early this morning to a historic gambling package giving most racetracks video lottery terminals, allowing up to six Indian-owned casinos in Western New York and the Catskills and expanding the state's lottery offerings.
Officials in New York are closing in on a historic gambling package that would give some racetracks video lottery terminals, permit up to six Indian-owned casinos in western New York and the Catskill Mountains, and expand the state's lottery offerings.
California Gov. Gray Davis signed legislation authorizing the California Horse Racing Board to enter into an interstate compact for owners license but vetoed a bill that would have permitted racetracks and owners to lower takeout on betting handle.
The House of Representatives Wednesday night passed money-laundering legislation that didn't include provisions to limit Internet gambling. The provisions offered by the House Financial Services Committee were opposed by the credit-card industry.
The following testimony was scheduled to be presented Thursday, July 12, by Gregory C. Avioli, deputy commissioner and chief operating officer of the National Thoroughbred Racing Association, to the Oversight and Investigations Subcommittee of the U.S. House of Representatives Financial Services Committee.
The future of horse racing in Massachusetts is brighter after the State House of Representatives on Monday approved a bill that extends simulcasting rights to racetracks and earmarks additional revenue for purses. The state Senate is scheduled to tackle the legislation Thursday.
A Pennsylvania legislator said he plans to call this fall for county referendums on the issue of slot machines at the state's four racetracks. Meanwhile, a resolution that seeks an economic impact study to develop ways the state "can help maintain fiscal soundness" of the horse racing and breeding industry has been introduced.
Equine industry officials met with United States Agriculture Secretary Ann Veneman Wednesday in Washington, D.C., to discuss, among other issues, mare reproductive loss syndrome and its impact on breeders and owners.
The state Senate unanimously approved a bill sponsored by Senate Racing Committee chairman William Larkin that would, at the request of the New York Racing Association, change state law to lower the number of mandatory racing days at Aqueduct from 107 to 95.
Legislation that would legalize off-track and account wagering in New Jersey stalled in a Senate committee Thursday when lawmakers decided to hold the bill up until they can come to a resolution on municipal issues.
Drive-through windows at simulcasting facilities and wagering from home are just some of the ideas on the table of the California Thoroughbred Breeders Association. In addition, the CTBA hopes racing-related legislation passes this year.
Efforts by Indiana riverboat casino interests to get approval of dockside gambling fell short when the Senate Rules Committee voted 5-3 against the legislation. According to published reports, one factor in the bill's failure was an amendment that deleted authorization for pull-tab gaming at Churchill Downs-managed Hoosier Park and off-track betting sites in the state. The amendment also did away with a proposed OTB site in the resort area of French Lick.
Legislation that would grant Oaklawn Park a reduction in its pari-mutuel excise tax is back in the Arkansas Senate's Committee on Revenue and Tax after having failed to pass the Senate Thursday. The bill has already been amended to strike out language that would authorize Oaklawn and Southland Greyhound Park to engage in account wagering.
The use of phenylbutazone would be permitted on race days in New York under legislation recently proposed by Assemblyman Gary Pretlow, a Yonkers Raceway booster. In New York, the pain-killer can't be administered to a horse within 48 hours of a race.
A flurry of legislative activity in Maryland has left four measures in committee, one which would authorize a constitutional amendment by referendum for video lottery terminals at racetracks. The other bills deal with purse supplements, satellite wagering facilities, and live racing and simulcasting in the evening.
A bill which would appropriate $18 million to purses at New Jersey racetracks is scheduled to go before a Senate committee on Thursday, where it is expected to pass, according to a Barbara DeMarco-Reiche, lobbyist for the New Jersey Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association, Inc. The monies would boost purses at the upcoming Monmouth Park meet, as well as the fall Meadowlands meet, to nearly $300,000 per day.
Before Congress adjourned Friday, legislation clarifying the Interstate Horseracing Act of 1978 regarding simulcast and account wagering was passed as part of a package of appropriations bills. The Internet Gambling Prohibition Act was not part of the legislation passed Friday and sent to President Clinton for his signature. The legislation, advanced by Senators Mitch McConnell and Jim Bunning, both Kentucky Republicans, and Rep. Hal Rogers, also a Republican from Kentucky, was sought to address concerns that arose as part of the internet gambling prohibition bill.
Members of the U.S. House and Senate last week approved an amendment to the Interstate Horse Racing Act that would clarify the legal status of simulcasting, commingled pools, and account wagering between state's with legalized pari-mutuel wagering. Despite the passage, however, legal protection for interstate simulcasting is far from assured.
Legislation that would legalize telephone account wagering and reform backstretch conditions at California racetracks received final passage Thursday and has been sent to the governor for his signature.