Changes To California Medication Rules

Published: December 2, 2016 07:27 pm EST

The California Horse Racing Board (CHRB) would like to remind licensees that penalties for medication violations will change January 1, 2017.

The more consequential revisions to CHRB Rule 1843.3 are as follows:

· Language has been added to clarify that aggravating factors allow the Board to increase penalties above the maximum for violations when appropriate.

· The requirement that only CHRB licensed veterinarians may prescribe medications within a CHRB inclosure has been clearly specified as a factor to consider in determining a medication penalty. Similarly, whether a horse was receiving a prescribed treatment must be documented through currently required reporting processes.

· Phenylbutazone threshold violations will be a minimum $500 fine for a first offense. Minimal Category D penalties have been eliminated for phenylbutazone violations. In addition, a trainer will not be eligible for a simple warning if the trainer has had a phenylbutazone violation in the previous three years – two years longer than the current warning period of 12 months.

· Prior medication violations will have a greater impact on penalties for subsequent violations. How prior violations are to be considered are defined. A trainer suspended for over 30 days for a medication violation will no longer be able to transfer horses to anyone who has been employed by the trainer in the previous year. Transfers to family members already are prohibited.

The specific amendments containing precise language and some technical changes not included in this listing are posted on the CHRB website (

(With files from CHRB)