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Minutes of Public Meeting - April 26, 2018

Commission Members Present:

Mike Algeo, Chairman
Thomas Bowman
David Hayden
Clarissa Coughlin
Tom Winebrener
Tammy Lafferty
Konrad Wayson
Ernest Grecco

Members Absent:

Ronald Thomas

Staff Present Representing the Maryland Racing Commission:

J. Michael Hopkins

Executive Director
Eric B. London
Assistant Attorney General

In accordance with the Notice of Public Meeting, as required by §3-302, General Provisions Article, Annotated Code of Maryland, the Maryland Racing Commission (“Commission”) met in open session on April 26, 2018 at 12:30 p.m. at Laurel Park, Laurel, Maryland 20744. Chairman Mike Algeo welcomed the public to the meeting at Laurel Park and commented that it was unfortunate that the Commissioners Race at Rosecroft had to be cancelled due to rain, but asserted that he was willing and ready to face the wet track. The Chairman also recognized Executive Director Michael Hopkins as being the newly appointed Chairman of the Association of Racing Commissioners International.

Minutes – March 22, 2018.

The Commission waived a reading of the minutes of its meeting of March 22, 2018 and voted to approve them with Commissioner Konrad Wayson abstaining from the vote, as he had not attended the March meeting.

Maryland Standardbred Race Fund 2018 Purses.

The Commission was presented with the 2018 Sire Stakes Purse Schedule from Cheri Stambaugh, the Administrator of the Fund. Hearing no objection, the Commission unanimously approved the Schedule.

Ocean Downs 2018 Live Racing Schedule.

The Commission was asked to approve the 2018 live racing schedule for Ocean Downs, which consists of live racing on Sunday, Monday, Wednesday and Thursday. Hearing no objection, the Commission unanimously approved the request.

Preakness Bonus – 2018

The Commission was advised that last year the legislature had provided $500,000.00 to the racing industry as a bonus if a Maryland Bred or Sired horse won the Preakness Stakes. Each year the Maryland Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association, the Maryland Jockey Club and the Maryland Horse Breeders Association make recommendations to the Commission regarding the division of the bonus. Mr. Hopkins advised of the recommendations and hearing no objection, the Commission unanimously approved the recommendations.

Maryland Jockey Club – Summer Racing Schedule.

Executive Director J. Michael Hopkins presented the Commission members with a request from the Maryland Jockey Club for its 2018 summer race meeting at Laurel Park, which is to begin on June 1, 2018 and run through August 28, 2018. The meet would consist of 40 days of live racing. Other requests for the summer race meeting included officials, wagering format, simulcasting and intertrack wagering. Hearing no objection, the Commission unanimously approved the requests.

Maryland State Fair – Summer Racing Schedule.

Executive Director J. Michael Hopkins presented the Commission members with a request from the Maryland State Fair for its 2018 summer race meeting at Timonium, which is to begin on August 23, 2018 through September 3, 2018, which includes 7 days of live racing and 3 days of simulcasting. Other requests for the summer race meeting included officials, wagering format, simulcasting and intertrack wagering. Hearing no objection, the Commission unanimously approved the requests.

Maryland Bred Race Fund Annual Yearling Show Report.

Executive Director J. Michael Hopkins presented the Commission with the annual report from the Maryland Bred Race Fund Advisory Committee. Mr. Hopkins advised that there were no significant changes and all the revenue and expenses had been reviewed for accuracy. The Commission accepted the report as submitted.

Maryland Bred Race Fund Advisory Committee.

Executive Director J. Michael Hopkins explained that the Advisory Committee had provided the Commission with recommendations for the balance of 2018. Mr. Hopkins further explained that the Maryland Thoroughbred Horsemen, Maryland Jockey Club and the Maryland Horse Breeders were scheduled to meet the following week and suggested that the Commission table any discussion on the recommendations until the next Commission meeting in May. The Commission accepted and agreed to table the recommendations. Secondly, Mr. Hopkins reported that the Maryland State Fair requested that Richie Blue be approved to be the half mile representative on the Advisory Committee for the next 12 months beginning June 1, 2018. Hearing no objection, the Commission unanimously approved the request.

2017 Audited Financials Statements.

Executive Director J. Michael Hopkins explained to the Commission that he had distributed the 2017 audited financial statements to the Commission. Having no questions or comments, the Commission unanimously accepted the statements as submitted.

2018 Legislative Session.

The Commission was presented with a report regarding legislation that was approved during the 2018 session. Executive Director J. Michael Hopkins explained that HB 1592 clarified the time at which a licensed jockey was covered by the workers’ compensation policy provided by the Maryland Jockey Injury Compensation Fund; HB 1721 modified the distribution of funds for the Maryland International and deleted a requirement that the race be a Grade 1 Race; and SB 1115 authorizing the Maryland Racing Commission to enter a limited compact with other states for medication uniformity.

Public Comments.

Cricket Goodall advised that the 2 year old in training sale will be two days after the Preakness at Timonium. She noted that there would be 600 two year olds for sale. Ms. Goodall also provided the members with a recap of a recent economic study performed by the American Horse Council.

Next Commission Meeting.

The next Commission Meeting will be held on May 24, 2018 at 12:30 P.M. at Pimlico Race Course Baltimore, Maryland. [After the April Meeting, the May Meeting was amended to May 22, 2018 at the same location].

J. Michael Hopkins
Executive Director