Louisiana purse subsidy bill withdrawn

By Matt Hegarty

http://www.drf.com/news/

A Louisiana lawmaker on Monday withdrew a bill [HB 585] that would have diverted $36 million from purse subsidies to a popular scholarship program, in an acknowledgement that the legislation would not pass out of a committee.

Jay Morris, a Republican representing a northern district of the state, voluntarily pulled the bill from consideration after members of the House Appropriations Committee raised objections to the legislation, citing the impact it could have on the racing industry in the state.

“I knew it was a foregone conclusion that this will not make it out of committee,” Morris said after earlier citing the large number of phone calls that racing industry supporters had made to committee members over the weekend. Morris said that he may return with legislation that would call for a study of the potential impact of the bill.

The bill would have cut in half the amount of casino subsidies going to purses and breeders’ awards in the state, redirecting them to the state’s Taylor Opportunity Program for Students, which provides stipends for college education. Horsemen had said that the impact would “destroy” the racing industry in the state.

Committee members said that they supported legislation to shore up the TOPS program, but said that funding for the program should instead come from a source other than the racing industry. Rep. James Armes, who said that he had received 37 calls from horsemen over the weekend, said that he could not support a measure that would “penalize” people who had invested money in their horse operations based on the impact of the subsidies.

“If we take it from them they are going to go out of business, and we’re not going to have a race industry,” Armes said.

SB226 Deferred

Senate Bill 226 which would have had devastating effects to the racing and breeding industry has been voluntarily deferred.

Many thanks to all who contacted members of the Senate Finance Committee. Your involvement has made all the difference! This has been a real work of cooperation between members of the LTBA, LQHBA, and LaHBPA, proving that when we join forces we all benefit.

A special note of appreciation to Commissioner of Agriculture, Dr. Mike Strain and former State Representative Arthur Morrell who spoke eloquently on the behalf of our industry.

 

HB585 Deferred. SB226 to be Heard Today.

House Bill 585 which would have had devastating effects to the racing and breeding industry has been voluntarily deferred. Many thanks to all who contacted members of the House Appropriations Committee. Your involvement has made all the difference!

SB 226 is also being heard today. We will update as information is received.

NEW!!! LTBA LEGISLATIVE ALERT! Senate Bill 226

This Bill ELIMINATES the Video Draw Poker Purse Supplement Fund which will reduce Louisiana Bred Purses and Breeders Awards paid

Senate Bill 226 by Senator Sharon Hewitt is scheduled for Monday morning (May 15th @ 10:00 AM) in the Senate Finance Committee

Please contact members of the Senate Finance Committee (see list below) and ask them to support our Horse Breeding & Racing Industry by voting NO on Senate Bill 226.
Thank you,
Louisiana Thorougbred Breeders Association 

SENATE FINANCE COMMITTEE

Senator Eric LaFleur (Chairman)
P. O. Box 617
Ville Platte, LA 70586
(337) 363-5019
(877) 396-4600
lafleure@legis.la.gov
Senator R.L. “Bret” Allain, II (Vice-Chairman)
600 Main Street
Franklin, LA 70538
(337) 828-9107
(985) 850-2738
allainb@legis.la.gov
Senator Conrad Appel
721 Papworth Avenue
Suite 102A
Metairie, LA 70005
(504) 838-5550
appelc@legis.la.gov
Senator Regina Barrow
4811 Harding Blvd
Baton Rouge, LA 70811
(225) 359-9400
(225) 359-9332
barrowr@legis.la.gov
Senator Wesley Bishop
7240 Crowder Blvd.
Suite 402
New Orleans, LA 70127
(504) 242-4198
bishopw@legis.la.gov
Senator Jack Donahue
P.O. Box 896
Mandeville, LA 70470
(985) 727-7949
donahuej@legis.la.gov
Senator James R. “Jim” Fannin
320 6th Street
Jonesboro, LA 71251
(318) 259-6620
(800) 259-8694
fanninj@legis.la.gov
Senator Sharon Hewitt
2055 2nd Street
Suite A
Slidell, LA 70458

100 Port Boulevard
Suite 20
Chalmette, LA 70043

(985) 646-6490 Slidell
(504) 278-6530Chalmette
hewitts@legis.la.gov
Senator Ronnie Johns
1011 Lakeshore Drive
Suite 515
Lake Charles, LA 70602
(337) 491-2016
johnsr@legis.la.gov
Senator Gregory Tarver
1024 Pierre Avenue
Shreveport, LA 71103
(318) 227-1499
tarverg@legis.la.gov
Senator Mack “Bodi” White
808 O’Neal Lane
Baton Rouge, LA 70816
(225) 272-1324
whitem@legis.la.gov
Senator Norbèrt N. “Norby” Chabert (Interim Member)
P.O. Box 2417
Houma, LA 70361
(985) 858-2927
chabertn@legis.la.gov
Senator Dan “Blade” Morrish (Interim Member)
119 W. Nezpique Street
Jennings, LA 70546-5356
(337) 824-3979
(888) 824-3979
morrishd@legis.la.gov
Senator Francis Thompson (Interim Member)
Box 68
Delhi, LA 71232
(318) 878-9408
(800) 259-9408
thompsof@legis.la.gov
Senator Mike Walsworth (Interim Member)
101 N 2nd Street
Suite 208
West Monroe, LA 71291
(318) 340-6453
(866) 518-8573
walsworthm@legis.la.gov

Louisiana bill would cut subsidies to horseracing purses

IMMEDIATE LEGISLATIVE ACTION NEEDED! HB585. THIS LEGISLATION WILL KILL HORSE RACING IN LOUISIANA!

 May 11, 2017

ATTENTION LOUISIANA HORSEMEN 

House Bill 585 by Representative Jay Morris is assigned to be heard in the House Appropriations Committee on Monday May 15th at 9:00AM. This bill will reduce by half the Slot Purse Supplement Funds. It only takes funds from purses; it takes nothing from the Race Track’s revenue. It takes funds that are generated exclusively at Horse Race Industry Owned facilities. This would devastate our industry. Please contact members of the Appropriations Committee (listed below) and ask them to support the Horse Racing Industry by maintaining these dedicated Purse Funds. Our industry generates over 1 Billion Dollars a year in economic impact and more than 73 Million Dollars in taxes paid to Louisiana. YOUR CALLS MAKE A DIFFERENCE. Ask the committee members to please vote NO on House Bill 585.

Thank you,
Louisiana Thorougbred Breeders Association

THIS LEGISLATION WILL KILL HORSE RACING IN LOUISIANA! 

 

Louisiana House of Representative
Appropriations Committee

Abraham, Mark 
130 Jamestown Road, Lake Charles, LA 70605
(337) 475-3016
abrahamm@legis.la.gov

Amedée, Beryl 
302 School St., Houma, LA 70360
(985) 858-2967
amedeeb@legis.la.gov

Armes, James K. 
2255 University Pkwy., Leesville, LA 71446
(337) 238-7004
armesj@legis.la.gov

Bacala, Tony
15482 Airline Hwy., Suite A, Prairieville, LA 70769
(225) 677-8020
bacalat@legis.la.gov

Bagley, Larry 
671 Hwy. 171, Suite E, Stonewall, LA 71078
(318) 925-9588
bagleyl@legis.la.gov

Barras, Taylor F. 
800 S. Lewis Street, Suite 206, 2nd Floor, New Iberia, LA 70560
(337) 373-4051
barrast@legis.la.gov

Berthelot, John A.
1024 S. Purpera, Gonzales, LA 70737
(225) 647-5646
berthelotj@legis.la.gov

Billiot, Robert E.
#10 Westbank Expressway, Westwego, LA 70094
(504) 436-8929
billiotr@legis.la.gov

Carter, Gary
3520 General DeGaulle, Suite 3071, New Orleans, LA 70114
(504) 361-6600
carterg@legis.la.gov

Chaney, Charles R.
P.O. Box 8, Rayville, LA 71269
(318) 728-5875
chaneyb@legis.la.gov

Edmonds, Rick
3931 S. Sherwood Forest Blvd., Suite 200, Baton Rouge, LA 70816
(225) 295-9240
edmondsr@legis.la.gov

Foil, Franklin J.
412 N. 4th St., Suite 220, Baton Rouge, LA 70802
(225) 342-6777
foilf@legis.la.gov

Harris, Lance
P.O. Box 13555, Alexandria, LA 71315-3555
(318) 767-6095
harrisl@legis.la.gov

Henry, Cameron
1539 Metairie Road, Suite A, Metairie, LA 70005
(504) 838-5433
henryc@legis.la.gov

Hensgens, Bob
407 Charity Street, Abbeville, LA 70510
(337) 893-5035
hensgensb@legis.la.gov

Hodges, Valarie
35055 La. Hwy. 16, Suite 2A, Denham Springs, LA 70706
(225) 791-2199
hodgesv@legis.la.gov

Leger, Walt III
935 Gravier St., Suite 2150, New Orleans, LA 70112
(504) 556-9970
legerw@legis.la.gov

McFarland, Jack
P.O. Box 143, Jonesboro, LA 71251
(318) 259-4275
mcfarlandj@legis.la.gov

Miguez, Blake
410 N. Broadway St., Erath, LA 70533
(337) 937-8827
miguezb@legis.la.gov

Miller, Dustin
1115 S. Union St., Opelousas, LA 70570
(337) 943-2900
millerd@legis.la.gov

Pylant, Steve E.
805 Jackson St., Suite A, Winnsboro, LA 71295
(318) 435-7313
pylants@legis.la.gov

Richard, Jerome
907 Jackson Street, Thibodaux, LA 70301
(985) 447-0999
richardj@legis.la.gov

Schroder, John M.
522 N. New Hampshire St., Covington, LA 70433
(985) 893-6262
schrodej@legis.la.gov

Simon, Scott M.
P.O. Box 1297, Abita Springs, LA 70420
(985) 893-6246
simons@legis.la.gov

Smith, Patricia Haynes
251 Florida Street, Suite 300, Baton Rouge, LA 70801
(225) 342-7106
smithp@legis.la.gov

Zeringue, Jerome
423 Goode St., Houma, LA 70360
(985) 876-8823
zeringuej@legis.la.gov

For more information, please call 1-800-772-1195 or visit louisianabred.com.

IMMEDIATE LEGISLATIVE ACTION NEEDED! HB585. THIS LEGISLATION WILL KILL HORSE RACING IN LOUISIANA!

May 11, 2017

ATTENTION LOUISIANA HORSEMEN 

House Bill 585 by Representative Jay Morris is assigned to be heard in the House Appropriations Committee on Monday May 15th at 9:00AM. This bill will reduce by half the Slot Purse Supplement Funds. It only takes funds from purses; it takes nothing from the Race Track’s revenue. It takes funds that are generated exclusively at Horse Race Industry Owned facilities. This would devastate our industry. Please contact members of the Appropriations Committee (listed below) and ask them to support the Horse Racing Industry by maintaining these dedicated Purse Funds. Our industry generates over 1 Billion Dollars a year in economic impact and more than 73 Million Dollars in taxes paid to Louisiana. YOUR CALLS MAKE A DIFFERENCE. Ask the committee members to please vote NO on House Bill 585.

Thank you,
Louisiana Thorougbred Breeders Association

THIS LEGISLATION WILL KILL HORSE RACING IN LOUISIANA! 

 

Louisiana House of Representative
Appropriations Committee

Abraham, Mark 
130 Jamestown Road, Lake Charles, LA 70605
(337) 475-3016

Amedée, Beryl 
302 School St., Houma, LA 70360
(985) 858-2967

Armes, James K. 
2255 University Pkwy., Leesville, LA 71446
(337) 238-7004

Bacala, Tony
15482 Airline Hwy., Suite A, Prairieville, LA 70769
(225) 677-8020

Bagley, Larry 
671 Hwy. 171, Suite E, Stonewall, LA 71078
(318) 925-9588

Barras, Taylor F. 
800 S. Lewis Street, Suite 206, 2nd Floor, New Iberia, LA 70560
(337) 373-4051

Berthelot, John A.
1024 S. Purpera, Gonzales, LA 70737
(225) 647-5646

Billiot, Robert E.
#10 Westbank Expressway, Westwego, LA 70094
(504) 436-8929

Carter, Gary
3520 General DeGaulle, Suite 3071, New Orleans, LA 70114
(504) 361-6600

Chaney, Charles R.
P.O. Box 8, Rayville, LA 71269
(318) 728-5875

Edmonds, Rick
3931 S. Sherwood Forest Blvd., Suite 200, Baton Rouge, LA 70816
(225) 295-9240

Foil, Franklin J.
412 N. 4th St., Suite 220, Baton Rouge, LA 70802
(225) 342-6777

Harris, Lance
P.O. Box 13555, Alexandria, LA 71315-3555
(318) 767-6095

Henry, Cameron
1539 Metairie Road, Suite A, Metairie, LA 70005
(504) 838-5433

Hensgens, Bob
407 Charity Street, Abbeville, LA 70510
(337) 893-5035

Hodges, Valarie
35055 La. Hwy. 16, Suite 2A, Denham Springs, LA 70706
(225) 791-2199

Leger, Walt III
935 Gravier St., Suite 2150, New Orleans, LA 70112
(504) 556-9970

McFarland, Jack
P.O. Box 143, Jonesboro, LA 71251
(318) 259-4275

Miguez, Blake
410 N. Broadway St., Erath, LA 70533
(337) 937-8827

Miller, Dustin
1115 S. Union St., Opelousas, LA 70570
(337) 943-2900

Pylant, Steve E.
805 Jackson St., Suite A, Winnsboro, LA 71295
(318) 435-7313

Richard, Jerome
907 Jackson Street, Thibodaux, LA 70301
(985) 447-0999

H-2B Provision Stays in Congress-Approved Spending Bill

An industry-supported provision that could allow additional foreign, seasonal H-2B visa workers made it through Congress as part of the government-funding bill signed by the Senate May 4.

As the House of Representatives approved the spending bill earlier this week, it now awaits an expected quick signature from President Donald Trump.

Currently only 66,000 H-2B seasonal work visas are allowed to be granted this year, but a provision in the spending bill, which funds the government through the fiscal year that ends in September, would give the Secretary of Homeland Security, in consultation with the Secretary of Labor, the authority to nearly double the H-2B cap when it’s determined there is an economic need.

National Thoroughbred Racing Association president Alex Waldrop said the NTRA will now work with the administration to get the H-2B provision implemented.

Horse racing is just one of many industries that relies on the H-2B visa program, joining businesses such as landscaping and seasonal resorts.

Congress in 2016 failed to renew the “returning worker exemption” that permits H-2B workers from the previous three years with clean records to enter the country again without counting against the 66,000 cap. That exemption had effectively raised the number of workers under H-2B from 66,000 to approximately 190,000.

Stronach Announces Support for Horseracing Integrity Act

April 26, 2017
Frank Stronach, Honorary Chairman and Founder of The Stronach Group, announced his support for legislation that will create a uniform, nationwide, and conflict-free drug testing enforcement program for horseracing.  The announcement came on Wednesday, April 26, a day after a group of industry leaders met in Lexington, Ky.

The legislation, known as The Horseracing Integrity Act, is to be formally introduced in the House of Representatives in the coming days.  Kentucky Congressman Andy  Barr and New York Congressman Paul Tonko are the co-sponsors.

Stronach made the commitment on behalf of The Stronach Group, one of the world’s leading racetrack operators and suppliers of pari-mutuel wagering technology.

“I believe, in the long run, no race day medication is better for the horses and for the industry,” said Stronach in his announcement.  “As a racetrack owner, I realize we have to make changes to get the horseracing industry on a sound and healthy foundation.”

“There are few people more committed to the future of horseracing in North America than Frank Stronach,” said Congressman Barr. “To have someone of his stature endorse this legislation puts the Horseracing Integrity Act on a clear path toward success.”

Click Here for Congressman Barr’s complete statement

Adena Springs
701 Cane Ridge Road, Paris, Kentucky 40361, United States

Florida Legislature Making ‘Substantial’ Push To Get Gambling Deal Completed In Current Session

by | 04.26.2017 | 2:10pm

Florida’s capitol building in Tallahassee

 

 

In a push to finally get a gambling bill approved during the current legislative session, the Florida House of Representatives made a few major offers during a session held Wednesday morning.

The SaintPetersBlog reports that the House has agreed to allow ‘decoupling’, which would permit pari-mutuel racetracks to stop offering live horse or dog racing, but keep their slots licenses if approved by local voters.

Only Calder among Florida’s Thoroughbred tracks would be allowed to decouple, according to current language in the negotiations, which also includes Thoroughbred “purse pools” created through contributions of other gambling entities.

The House bill does not appear to expand slots to eight counties with pari-mutuel wagering (including the flag-drop racing in Gretna and Hamilton county), and where local voters have already approved via referendum. It does permit a new South Florida slots parlor, provided it is at least five miles from an existing casino, and allows the Seminole tribe to add caps and roulette to its seven casinos throughout the state.

The Florida Senate’s gambling bill also permits decoupling but expands gambling dramatically by permitting slots in eight counties north of Dad and Broward counties.

Republican Senator and conference chair Bill Galvano called the House proposal “serious” and “substantial”.

Read more in the SaintPetersBlog