Former Regulator to Head New York Program

An upstate New York law school is beginning a new center to study racing and wagering issues, and officials hope it will be in the forefront of tackling various policy issues. The Albany Law School has hired Bennett Liebman, a former state racing and wagering board member, to head its new Program on Racing and Wagering.

Liebman, a one-time aide to former Gov. Mario Cuomo who spent 12 years at the state racing and wagering board until last year, will begin Feb. 1 at the new center that school officials say will be unlike any other academic facility that studies racing issues.

"Bennett comes with a wealth of experience not just in New York, but nationally as well,'' said Patricia Salkin, associate dean at the law school and director of the Government Law Center, where the racing program will be based. "His intellect and knowledge of the issues and familiarity with the various stakeholders adds a tremendous amount of credibility to the program.

Liebman, an expert in racing issues, has worked as a counsel to the state Assembly's racing committee since last year. He was unavailable for comment Friday.

The center will study the range of issues that affect the racing industry. It will also, on Aug. 6 in Saratoga Springs, put on its second annual Institute on Racing and Wagering Law, a day-long session for lawyers and others involved in the industry. The program was a spin-off of an idea by a law school graduate, William MacMillen, a Long Island lawyer who has owned racehorses.