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New York Racetrack Denied Operating License

State regulators have denied a 2004 racing application for troubled Vernon Downs, a Standardbred racetrack in central New York. The Feb. 27 ruling by the New York State Racing and Wagering Board prohibits racing at the facility and keeps shuttered a recently completed video lottery terminal casino.

Iowa House OKs Table Games for Racetracks

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Prairie Meadows and two Greyhound tracks will be permitted to offer table games under Iowa legislation that bans new gaming licenses in counties where they aren't currently in place.

Finger Lakes Officially State's First Thoroughbred Racino

Patrons waited more than two hours to enter Finger Lakes Gaming & Racetrack Feb. 18 for the opening of the track's video lottery terminal parlor. The scene was reminiscent of one that played out a few weeks earlier when Saratoga Gaming and Raceway became New York's first operating racino.

Indiana Tracks' Slot-Like Gaming Bill Beaten

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Efforts to bring 5,000 electronic pull-tab machines to Hoosier Park, Indiana Downs and two simulcast wagering facilities were defeated Feb. 12 in the Indiana General Assembly.

Measure Would Give N.Y. Tracks Full Casinos

Racetracks in New York would be permitted to have full Las Vegas-style casinos under new state legislation that also calls for a constitutional amendment to permit non-Indian casinos in the Catskills and Western New York.

Kentucky's Casino Hopes Move Forward

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Officials representing the Kentucky horse industry agreed Wednesday to proposed alternative gaming legislation that would put casinos at four racetracks and four other non-racetrack facilities in the state.

Indiana Racetrack Gaming Bill Clears Committee

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A bill that would allow electronic pull-tab machines at Indiana racetracks and two satellite wagering facilities crossed a second hurdle Jan. 21. The House Ways and Means committee approved the legislation by a 17-10 vote and sent it along for consideration by the full House.

Casino Purse Supplement Considered in New Jersey

Under a plan being considered by the New Jersey legislature, the governor's office, and the New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority, Thoroughbred and Standardbred purses could be supplemented by revenue from Atlantic City casinos, possibly this year.

Oklahoma Deal Calls for Racetrack Gaming

Indian tribes, the horse racing industry, and Gov. Brad Henry have reached an agreement on legislation that would allow racetracks to install gaming machines and regulate devices currently operating at tribal casinos. The measure now goes to the state legislature.

Racing Making Strides, NTRA Rep Tells Legislators

Racing is making significant strides in a number of important areas, but needs legislative assistance in others, a representative of the National Thoroughbred Racing Association told a panel of legislators from gaming states Friday during a meeting in Las Vegas.

Kentucky Plan: Public Vote for Racetrack Casinos

Though the prospects for expanding gambling in Kentucky remain clouded, the racing and breeding industry has settled on a plan for a constitutional amendment to authorize full-scale casino gambling at the state's eight racetracks.

New York Racino Stalled by Licensing Difficulties

Licensing problems have delayed, for possibly well into 2004, the opening of Vernon Downs, which was to become the first racetrack in New York with video lottery terminals. That honor will now go to Saratoga Raceway, which is scheduled to open its VLT operation in mid-January.

Evangeline Downs Gets Early Christmas Present

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The slot machines parlor at Evangeline Downs in Opelousas, La., opened Dec. 19 even though the facility won't offer live horse racing until 2005. The 2004 meet will be held at the existing Evangeline Downs in Carencro, about 10 miles south of the new site.

Hastings Harness Neighbor Wins OK for Slot Machines

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Fraser Downs, a British Columbia Standardbred track located not far from Hastings Park, received approval Dec. 16 to install slot machines. The Surrey City Council will schedule a fourth reading on the measure and approve final documents in a few weeks, the track said in a press release.

Jackpot to Return; Similar Races Suggested for State

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The $1-million Delta Jackpot Dec. 5 at Delta Downs generated so much exposure and money for the racetrack that it will return next year, said general manager Jack Bernsmeier, who would like to see similar big-money races at all Louisiana tracks.

How Much Do Slots Really Help the Racing Product?

Jean Major said he can't argue with the benefits of racetrack slot machines in Ontario, Canada. But he indicated there are two sides to every story, and suggested some procedures to ensure substantive growth in the horse racing industry.

Illegal Internet Gambling Focus of National Legislative Council

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Issues related to the loss of tax dollars from Internet wagering will come into focus when state legislators from across the country meet in Las Vegas to focus on public policy questions related to Internet, casino, and other forms of gaming. The occasion will be the 2004 Winter Meeting of the National Council of Legislators from Gaming States (NCLGS) at Harrah's Las Vegas on the January 9-11 weekend.

Racetrack Gaming Push Hits Another Wall in Ohio

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Legislation to put the issue of racetrack video lottery terminals on the ballot in March 2004 has been killed in the Ohio General Assembly, a lobbyist said Dec. 2, the deadline to get the measure passed.

Racino Impact is Focus of University Study

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A study that examines the impact of racinos on the racing product will be presented Dec. 9 at the second Racing & Gaming Summit in Tucson, Ariz., the day before the University of Arizona Symposium on Racing begins.

MTR Gaming Plans Temporary Slots Parlor in Pennsylvania

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MTR Gaming Group Inc., which has been granted a state license to build a horse racing track in Pennsylvania, has plans to build a temporary slot machine parlor where customers can gamble during the two years it will take to build the track.

Compromise on Ohio VLTs as Deadline Looms

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A compromise proposal to put the issue of racetrack video lottery terminals before voters has been offered in the Ohio Senate, though it must pass the General Assembly by Dec. 3 if it is to make the ballot.

Opinions Vary on Prospects for Racino Legislation

The signs point to progress in Kentucky in terms of a bid for racetrack gaming in 2004, while in Pennsylvania, the horse industry is slowing the prospects for passage of legislation, officials said Nov. 11 during a panel discussion at Racino 2003 at Mountaineer Race Track & Gaming Resort.

Giving Back

By Tom Molloy -- With VLT revenue resulting in even higher purses, it would seem to strengthen a case for an open dialogue to discuss a re-negotiation of fees with an emphasis on formally directing a fair portion to the grooms, hotwalkers, and others.

Ward: Thoroughbred Industry Has Serious Work to Do

The Thoroughbred industry will have to face the music and change its tune in the next few years if it is to flourish, trainer John Ward suggested during a lively discussion the evening of Nov. 4 at the monthly Kentucky Thoroughbred Farm Managers' Club meeting.

Budget Plan Would Put VLTs at New York OTBs

Video lottery terminals would be permitted at off-track betting facilities in New York under a plan being considered by state budget negotiators. The idea is being promoted to deal with another huge, multibillion-dollar budget looming over the next two years and a failure by racetracks to get VLTs up and running quickly enough to send revenue-sharing money to the state.

Pennsylvania Governor to Speak at Racino Conference

Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell, whose 2002 campaign platform included an endorsement for racetrack gaming, will issue a "major policy speech" Nov. 12 at the closing session of Racino 2003 at Mountaineer Race Track & Gaming Resort in West Virginia.

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