BILL SUMMARY for SB09-174
SENATE COMMITTEE ON AGRICULTURE AND NATURAL RESOURCES
|Moved Amendment L. 001. The motion passed without
Moved to amend Page 9 of the printed bill, line 23
Moved to refer to Senate Bill 09-174 to the Commit
|Pass Without Objection
Pass Without Objection
01:58 PM -- Senate Bill 09-174
Senator Kester, prime sponsor of Senate Bill 09-174, concerning pari-mutuel racing, described the challenges facing the pari-mutuel industry across the country. He explained that the bill eliminates the statutory cap on simulcast race days and authorizes the Colorado Racing Commission to make that determination. He also distributed Amendment L. 001 (Attachment C)
The following persons testified on the bill:
02:00 PM -- Eric Morgan, Colorado Greyhound Kennel Association, testified against the bill and discussed the economic challenges affecting the pari-mutuel industry. Mr. Morgan explained the different taxes imposed on greyhound racing and horse racing and explained that increasing the number of simulcast days would injure Colorado businesses. He talked about other legislation (House Bill 09-1095) that would have implemented a tax reduction for the pari-mutuel racing industry that was not successful. Mr. Morgan explained that the bill would allow racetracks to increase the number of simulcast races, without requiring live racing. He talked about the loss of live racing in the state, the loss to Colorado business, and explained that Senate Bill 09-174 would not require tracks to have live racing, which would eliminate live greyhound racing in the state.
02:18 PM -- Stephen Johnson, representing himself, testified against the bill and explained that the bill would permanently eliminate live racing in the state. Mr. Johnson talked about specific racetracks in the state that have closed and the injury to small businesses. Mr. Johnson addressed questions from the committee and distributed handouts to the committee (Attachment D and Attachment E).
02:24 PM -- Peggy Brummage, Greyhound Industry, testified against the bill and talked about the loss of live greyhound racing in the state and the injury to small businesses. She talked about the impact that simulcast racing has on the greyhound and horse racing industry.
02:27 PM -- Melvin Johnson, Greyhound Industry, testified against the bill, talked about the history of live racing in Colorado, and describe the impact of simulcast racing on live racing.
02:30 PM -- Gary Bryan, President, Colorado Greyhound Kennel Association, talked about the suffering racing industry in the state, and talked about the burden of shipping a large number of greyhounds out of the state for adoption or racing. Mr. Bryan addressed questions from the committee concerning greyhound racing in other states, off-track betting facilities, and the racing seasons in Colorado and other states.
02:38 PM -- Dan Hartman, Director, Division of Racing, Department of Revenue, addressed the committee's questions concerning the amount that racing facilities are taxed in the state and talked about the possibility of live greyhound racing to the committee. He talked about the taxation on simulcast facilities and the impact of Senate Bill 09-174 on live racing in the state.
02:45 PM -- Bruce Seymore, Mile High Racing and Entertainment, testified in support of the bill and explained that the bill would allow the racing industry to have a more flexible business model. He talked about the reasons that live racing has suffered, talked about the hardships to specific racetracks in the state, and explained that 19 dog tracks closed across the country since 2000. He also described the importance of off-track betting facilities in and live horse racing in the state, which is a $1.6 billion/year industry. Mr. Seymore addressed questions from the committee concerning off-track betting, simulcast racing, and the taxation on racing facilities.
02:59 PM -- Ray Teutesch, representing himself, testified in support of the bill and describe the importance of horse racing industry to the state of Colorado. He also distributed notarized letters of support for the bill from Mr. Jerry Slaughter, Harry Veruchi, George Wafer, and Reed Jenkins, (Attachment F).
03:04 PM -- Kathryn Keeley, Director, Arapahoe and Milehigh Race Park, testified in support of the bill and talked about the importance of the racing industry for small businesses in the state.
03:07 PM -- Reed Jenkins, Arapahoe Park, spoke in support of the bill and described the economic benefits provided by the racing industry.
03:11 PM -- Bill Alexander, representing himself, spoke in support of the bill and in opposition to the state paying for the regulation of the racing industry (Attachment G). He also described declining public interest in live greyhound racing and responded to questions about the taxes pertaining to the animal racing industry.
03:23 PM -- Red and Jerry's Entertainment Center, described the decline of public interest in live racing and spoke in support of the bill. He also described the economic benefits of simulcast racing.
03:27 PM -- Danny Williams, Mile Hi Entertainment, spoke in support of the bill and described the taxes and regulations that impact the economic viability of live racing. He also identified protections for the greyhound racing industry on Page 9 of the printed bill, lines 17 through 23. He also responded to questions from the committee regarding the effect of the bill on live racing facilities in the state and other issues.
| 03:50:02 PM
|Moved to refer to Senate Bill 09-174 to the Committee on Appropriations, as amended. The motion passed on a vote of 5-2.
Final YES: 5 NO: 2 EXC: 0 ABS: 0 FINAL ACTION: PASS
Mr. Williams returned to describe the effect of Amendment L. 001.
Dan Hartman, Division of Racing, responded to questions about fees collected by the division.
The meeting recessed.