Anne M. Eberhardt

NYRA Lowers Exotics Takeout After Overcharge

The pari-mutuel takeout rate should have been lowered in September 2010.

The New York Racing Association has lowered the pari-mutuel takeout rate for several wagers after having overcharged bettors for more than a year.

NYRA announced Dec. 21 it would lower the rate on trifecta, superfecta, Grand Slam, Pick 3, Pick 4, and Pick 6 wagers by two percentage points to 24%. NYRA said the action will "correct an unintentional oversight" by which the takeout rate for exotic wagers was one point above the statutory limit.

According to published reports bettors should have received an additional $8.6 million for the period.

When NYRA and New York State agreed to a new franchise agreement in September 2008, part of the deal called for a 1% across-the-board increase in takeout on NYRA wagers. That legislation increased the takeout on exotic bets to 26% and superceded the statute that caps takeout on exotics at 25%.

When this provision expired in September 2010, the takeout on exotics should have reverted to 25% to conform to the pre-existing statute, but the change was unintentionally overlooked due to the complexity of the takeout provisions in the racing law, NYRA officials said.

NYRA said the lower 24% takeout rate on exotics was proposed "to provide an equitable and immediate remedy to its customers." The changes were approved by the New York State Racing and Wagering Board at its Dec. 21 meeting; the new rates take effect Dec. 28.

NYRA officials said they will work with regulators to address reimbursement for NYRA Rewards customers, holders of uncashed tickets, and other customers that can be identified through IRS reporting, within the time frames directed by the NYSRWB.

With the approved changes, takeout rates are as follows:
15%–Pick 6 (non-carryover pools)
16%–Win, place, and show
18.5%–Exacta, quinella, and daily double
24%–Trifecta, superfecta, Grand Slam, Pick 3, Pick 4, and Pick 6 (carryover pools)