New York state officials said talks are under way to permit construction to proceed on a casino at Aqueduct, and a crack has opened to possibly permit more video lottery terminals in the state. Additionally, there is a plan by the state to provide more public assistance to keep the New York Racing Association afloat through 2007.
An Illinois legislator said he would propose an expansion of gambling that would include racetrack slot machines.
Legislation to authorize table games at West Virginia racetracks was introduced Jan. 30 in the state legislature.
A Virginia House of Delegates committee is scheduled to tackle legislation to authorize Instant Racing at a Jan. 30 hearing.
Kentucky Democratic gubernatorial candidate Steve Beshear said Jan. 16 he supports a plan for casino gambling that could generate hundreds of millions in tax revenue to help fund education and road construction.
Another bill to authorize slot machines at Maryland racetracks has been introduced in the House of Delegates.
The first three weeks of slot-machine gaming at Philadelphia Park Racetrack & Casino generated total wagering of $175.2 million and produced more than $15.1 million in gross revenue.
Citing concerns over crowded conditions in the grandstand because of an influx of slot-machine players, Philadelphia Park Racetrack & Casino announced Jan. 2 it would move first post time back 20 minutes and drop races from its weekend cards.
Six racetracks and five non-racing companies were awarded permanent slot-machine licenses Dec. 20 by the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board.
Harrah's Entertainment Inc., the world's largest casino company, said Tuesday that its board has accepted a $17.1 billion buyout offer from two private equity groups.
Philadelphia Park will become Philadelphia Park Casino and Racetrack Dec. 19 when it officially begins slot-machine operations in Bensalem Township, Pa.
With slot machines coming on line next week, Philadelphia Park announced a 40% boost in overall purses for the beginning of the 2007 season.
Presque Isle Downs, currently under construction near Erie, Pa., plans to offer 25 nights of Thoroughbred racing for its inaugural season in September 2007, track officials and horsemen said.
A proposal that could lead to eliminating the state's $27-million-a-year subsidy to the horse racing industry likely won't make it out of the starting gate.
The Jockeys' Guild has asked the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board to consider the catastrophic on-track accident insurance policy at Philadelphia Park before it grants the racetrack a permanent license to operate slot machines.
With Philadelphia Park about ready to open its slot-machine parlor, gaming at Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs, located in a much smaller market, has exceeded expectations after the first two weeks of operation.
Portland Meadows plans to install Instant Racing machines during its current 2006-07 meet under a plan recently approved by the Oregon Racing Commission.
MGM Mirage, keeping a watchful eye on developments for New York's Thoroughbred franchise, is preparing to move ahead with plans to construct a casino at Aqueduct.
Maryland's Thoroughbred industry is likely to be downsized considerably beginning in 2008 unless racetracks are allowed more gambling options such as slot machines, a racetrack executive said Nov. 14.
Ohio racing interests, stung by the failure of a Nov. 7 referendum that would have allowed video lottery terminals at the state's seven tracks, didn't rule out another attempt and said there could be legislative assistance for the industry in the interim.
For the third time in 16 years, Ohioans soundly rejected the expansion of gambling in Ohio, this time routing a racetrack-backed proposal to put video lottery terminals at seven tracks and two non-track locations in Cleveland.
Penn National Gaming Inc. has entered into a definitive agreement to purchase Zia Park Racetrack and its Black Gold Casino for $200 million, the company announced Nov. 7.
Expanded gambling in Kentucky isn't a front-burner topic right now, but it will be next year when the state holds elections for governor and other top posts, a racetrack official said Nov. 3 during the "Thoroughbred Industry Forum" at Churchill Downs on the eve of the Breeders' Cup World Championships.
Thoroughbred racing returns to Delta Downs Racetrack & Casino in Vinton, La., Nov. 1 after a 19- month hiatus brought on by Hurricane Rita. The 88-night season, which runs through March 31, 2007, offers a 39-race stakes schedule worth more than $4 million.
Presque Isle Downs, a Thoroughbred racetrack under construction near Erie, Pa., was awarded a conditional slot-machine license Oct. 25 and plans to have the reels spinning by mid-February 2007.
The head of a new Maryland panel designed to better market horse racing said he expects the state legislature to reach consensus on slot-machine legislation next year.
Several departments of Maryland state government including the racing commission will be part of a marketing task force to be announced Monday (Oct. 23) at the commission's monthly meeting.
Florida's first slot machines were delivered to the new Gulfstream Park Racing and Casino Oct. 20.
Gulfstream Park said Oct. 13 it has received a gaming license from the state of Florida.
Tax relief for the horse industry, not racetrack gaming, will be the focus of the Kentucky Equine Education Project during the 2007 General Assembly session, according to the chairman of the organization.
A water main break discovered by construction workers early Monday morning forced the cancellation of live racing at Philadelphia Park and could threaten Tuesday's card as well.
The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board approved the first slot-machine licenses in the state Sept. 27, clearing the way for five racetracks to add thousands of machines.
Pennsylvania gambling regulators are expected to give the state's racetracks the go-ahead Sept. 27 to plug in thousands of slot machines, the biggest step in two years toward making Pennsylvania one of the nation's busiest gambling markets.
A referendum to allow video lottery terminals at seven racetracks and two stand-alone casinos in Ohio will be on the November ballot because supporters of the measure have obtained the required number of certified signatures.
New York's top fiscal officer has warned a state agency that its delay in approving a video lottery terminal casino contract for Aqueduct is costing the state needed revenue and risking bankruptcy for the New York Racing Association.
Pennsylvania gambling regulators began licensing hearings Sept. 11 that will be a prelude to authorizing slot machines at racetracks later this year.
Bally Technologies has signed a contract with Magna Entertainment Corp. to provide a complete slot-machine accounting, casino management, and bonusing solution, and a wide variety of gaming devices, at Gulfstream Park.
Jockeys at Philadelphia Park again have asked the Pennsylvania State Horse Racing Commission to facilitate an agreement between riders and track management on catastrophic-injury insurance coverage.
Retired jockey Laffit Pincay Jr. went to Sacramento, Calif., on Wednesday to plead for help for California's embattled racing industry and jockeys.
Finger Lakes Gaming & Racing will add almost 200 video lottery terminals as part of a $4-million expansion, but a top official with owner Delaware North indicated major racing-related projects, such as installation of a turf course and perhaps a synthetic surface, are closely linked to the VLT revenue model in New York.
Bally Technologies, headquartered in Las Vegas, will provide a casino management system for the slot-machine operation planned for Philadelphia Park in southeastern Pennsylvania.
With ongoing declines in Thoroughbred breeding and racing in Ohio, and a possible November referendum for racetrack gaming in the state, organizers of this year's Midwest Regional sale said the industry has reached a "pivotal" point.
Magna Entertainment Corp. said it intends to proceed with the development of a slot-machine facility at Gulfstream Park despite a decision by the Florida District Court of Appeal First District.
Magna Entertainment Corp. chairman Frank Stronach indicated his company hopes to be involved in New York racing on some level, and that it also is working with Churchill Downs Inc. on projects that will benefit the two companies and the industry at large.
Magna Entertainment Corp. reported a slightly smaller net loss for the second quarter of 2006 compared with the same period last year, but indicated a working-capital deficiency of almost $140 million remains a problem.
A racetrack at which all revenue after expenses would go toward the racing product remains in the works and in the running for a license in Pennsylvania, but the individual spearheading the project said it remains to be seen whether it would be a Thoroughbred track without slot machines, or a dual-breed facility with slots.
Supporters of video lottery terminals at the seven racetracks in Ohio have submitted 624,625 signatures to put the issue on the November ballot.
Hearings for the companies seeking licenses to operate slot machines at racetracks have been set by the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board, which could vote on conditional licenses in late September.
Amid the sound of hammers and drills as Philadelphia Park readies the first two floors of its grandstand in anticipation of slot machines later this year, the Pennsylvania Horse Breeders Association celebrated "Pennsylvania's Day at the Races" July 29.
Kevin DeSanctis, president and chief operating officer of Penn National Gaming Inc., will leave the company by the end of this year to form establish his own company.
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