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New Jersey Waits For Good News

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Published: January 4, 2010 1:12 pm ET

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With New Jersey Gov.-elect Chris Christie set to take the reins of the state government in less than three weeks, officials and lobbyists from the thoroughbred and harness racing industries continue to ponder how the new government will allow racing to survive and end the fight between the racing and casino interests.

"Chris is committed to not kick the can down the road. That's not acceptable anymore," said Sen. Jennifer Beck in today's Asbury Park Press. "There will be a resolution to it. My expectation is that once he gets to Trenton, hard decisions will be made."

Beck is the representative from Monmouth, home of t-bred track Monmouth Park. According to the article, the New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority incurred $10 million in losses in that facility last year.

"I don't have any sense if the new administration has formulated any opinion on what support they'll continue to offer the horse racing industry," said Carl Goldberg, chairman of the New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority. "We haven't had the opportunity to make a presentation on what's facing the industry and whether the administration should be supporting it."

Thomas Luchento, head of the Standardbred Breeders and Owners Association of New Jersey, is clearly in favour of seeing the state expand casino-style gaming to the harness tracks of Freehold Raceway and The Meadowlands.

"Nothing is going to produce the kind of money for the state that a gaming mall at the Meadowlands would produce," Luchento said. "To make the Meadowlands a first-class entertainment site with a casino, you're not creating a new gambling location because there is already betting at the racetrack there. We think that Meadowlands as a gaming mall can yield billions of dollars to revitalize racing and the state."

To read the full article, click here.


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