The push for alternative gaming at racetracks continues in New Jersey.
The Meadowlands will not hold live racing or host simulcating on Sept. 11.
Rainy weather and an earlier-than-normal start to the 2002 season have contributed to nearly 6% across-the-board declines in attendance and handle at Monmouth Park through the first month of racing.
Thoroughbred and Standardbred interests have been bickering for years in New Jersey. But on May 15, the two breeds shared the stage at Meadowlands in a successful promotion.
While officials at the New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority were celebrating the impending opening of Monmouth Park May 11, they also announced a unique concept for Meadowlands.
After a number of meeting the last 10 days, New Jersey horsemen and management of Monmouth Park and Meadowlands are close to finalizing a proposal to determine the amount of Thoroughbred dates for 2002 and beyond.
New Jersey Gov. Jim McGreevey presented his 2003 budget in a March 26 speech before state legislators, and among his cost-cutting proposals is a reduction in the operating subsidy for the New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority, which oversees Monmouth Park and Meadowlands, by more than half.
A New Jersey senator who was instrumental in the passage of legislation that authorized off-track and account wagering in the state introduced a bill Feb. 21 that calls for reconstitution of the New Jersey Racing Commission. If passed, the legislation would allow Gov. Jim McGreevey to appoint all new members to the panel.
New Jersey Gov. Jim McGreevey tabbed financier George Zoffinger to head of the New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority and criticized previous NJSEA leadership for the way it handled the operation.
An expected purse supplement of $6 million for the New Jersey horse racing industry from the state legislature won't be forthcoming as expected, Gov. Jim McGreevey said Feb. 12. That has raised the question as to whether Monmouth Park and Meadowlands can support even 120 days of Thoroughbred racing, 21 less than required by law.
New Jersey Sen. Martha Bark, who was the co-sponsor of the bill that eventually was signed into law as the Off-Track and Phone Wagering Act, said she is "tremendously disappointed" that the state racing commission reduced the number of live Thoroughbred dates at Monmouth Park and Meadowlands this year from 141 as mandated in the law to 120.
A deal thought to have been struck between horsemen and racetrack management for 2002-2003 racing dates in the Garden State fell apart Dec. 20 during a sometimes-contentious New Jersey Racing Commission meeting. One racing official said the "climate of pettiness" is threatening live racing in the state.
After more than a week of meetings, the New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority and the New Jersey Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association have reached a compromise on 2002 racing dates, a horsemen's representative said Tuesday.
The cancellation of racing at Meadowlands for several days following the Sept. 11 terrorist attack on the World Trade Center cost the New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority an estimated $866,500, according to numbers released Friday, Nov. 16.
Racing fans in New Jersey could have more to cheer about in 2002, that is if Meadowlands and Monmouth Park are granted the 141 Thoroughbred dates requested for next year.
In the wake of the New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority's announcement that it will rejoin the National Thoroughbred Racing Association Jan. 1, 2002, other Mid-Atlantic associations indicated they're not quite ready to follow suit.
The New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority and its two racetracks--Meadowlands and Monmouth Park--are rejoining the National Thoroughbred Racing Association, effective Jan. 1, 2002, it was announced by both organizations on Friday.
Officials from Breeders' Cup Ltd. were at Monmouth Park on Wednesday to assess the New Jersey racetrack's suitability as a future site for the Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships.
Purse supplements recently signed into law by acting Gov. Donald DiFrancesco will fuel the $300,000 per day average in overnight purses at Monmouth. Including stakes, the daily average will be $350,000.
John Bothe, the former Meadowlands track announcer who made national headlines when he filed a discrimination suit against the New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority in 1999, has been hired by The Red Mile in Lexington to call the second portion of the harness track's spring meet.
New Jersey acting Gov. Donald DiFrancesco signed into law Tuesday
a bill to allocate $18 million to the state's racing industry from the general fund. Of that amount, $11.7 million will go to boost Thoroughbred purses, and $6.3 million will go toward Standardbred purses.
The New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority said Friday there is no plan to suspend racing at The Meadowlands and relocate to Monmouth Park should a NASCAR track be built at the East Rutherford facility. The NJSEA issued the statement in response to an article that appeared in the Star-Ledger newspaper April 6.
April 2 marked the opening of the stable area at Monmouth Park, where things are looking up this year. The New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority track offers the marquee Thoroughbred meet in New Jersey
Racetracks and Thoroughbred horsemen in New Jersey have been battling for more than a year over details in legislation that would authorize account and off-track wagering in New Jersey. Apparently, there has been a meeting of the minds, and if so, a bill could be passed by this spring. Protection of live racing dates is among the major issues.
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