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California Board Meeting Summary

Published: May 23, 2015 5:11 pm ET

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The California Horse Racing Board conducted its regular meeting Thursday, May 21, at Santa Anita Park.

Chairman Chuck Winner presided. Vice Chair Richard Rosenberg and Commissioners Madeline Auerbach, Steve Beneto, Jesse Choper, George Krikorian, and Alex Solis also were in attendance.

The audio of this entire Board meeting is available on the CHRB website ( under the Webcast link. In brief:

· The Board approved the license application for the Del Mar Thoroughbred Club to conduct a 40-day race meet at Del Mar from Thursday, July 16, through Monday, September 7 (Labor Day). These will be the first races run over Del Mar’s new, dirt main track.

· CHRB Executive Director Rick Baedeker reported that an additional $1.2 million has been allocated for equine drug testing and research at the U.C. Davis Maddy Laboratory. He also reported that he attended a recent legislative committee hearing in Sacramento concerning online gaming and he testified on the workings and merits of the California horse racing industry and the need for horse racing to be a participant in online poker if it is legalized.

· Chairman Winner welcomed Alex Solis following his appointment to the Board by Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. last month. The chairman named Commissioner Solis the new chair of the Jockey, Driver and Welfare Committee and also made him a member of the Medication and Track Safety Committee. Both of those committees will be meeting May 27.

· The Board approved the license application for the Los Alamitos Racing Association to conduct an eight-day, daytime thoroughbred meet at Los Alamitos from July 2 through July 12. During this discussion, Commissioner Auerbach asked whether Los Alamitos or any California racing association had followed up on information provided by the CHRB on video surveillance systems for stable areas. In response, Joe Morris, president of the Thoroughbred Owners of California, reported that the TOC has had discussions with the manufacturer of a video surveillance system and with Santa Anita management and security personnel.

· The Board approved the request from the California Authority of Racing Fairs (CARF) and the Pacific Coast Quarter Horse Racing Association to suspend the use of clenbuterol for 12 months (commencing June 1, 2015) for quarter horses at CARF racetracks.

· The Board approved the license application for the California Exposition and State Fair to run a fair meet at Cal Expo in Sacramento from July 10 through July 26.

· The Board approved the license application for the Sonoma County Fair to conduct a fair meet in Santa Rosa from July 30 through August 16. Because the Sonoma County Fair will conclude prior to the close of the race meet, other events and activities are being arranged to run simultaneously with the final weekend of the race meet.

· The Board approved for 45-day public notice a proposal to amend the criteria to be used when considering the denial, suspension, or revocation of an occupational license.

· The Board approved a regulatory amendment providing that a horse is ineligible to start in any race in California if the horse is on the Veterinarian’s List in another racing jurisdiction unless the stewards give prior approval for good cause.

· The Board approved a regulatory amendment to adjust the non-winning jockey riding fee scale to reflect California’s most recent minimum wage increase of 12.5 percent.

· Mike Ernst, the Del Mar chief financial officer and a board member for the California Race Track Pension Plan that covers certain non-union employees of California racetracks, reported in response to questions posed at the April CHRB meeting that “all retirees, current and former employees will receive all the benefits promised under the plan.”

· The Board renewed for one year authority for the Executive Director to execute CHRB service contracts on behalf of the Board, with approval from the chairman or vice chairman. All such approvals will be immediately reported to the full Board.


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