Authorizes racetracks and off-track betting corporations to offer rebates on pari-mutuel wagers made by bettors to reward horse racing patrons for their participation at race meetings.
The purpose of this bill is to clearly authorize in law the ability of host racetracks, simulcast racetracks, and regional off-track betting corporations (OTBS) to offer long term rebate and fan appreciation benefits to those racing fans who attend race meets, preferred customers and to volume bettors. Under current law, while the State Gaming Commission can authorize event based or other very short term rebate or fan appreciation programs, there are no standards for establishing successful long term rebate programs that can effectively bring more race fans to the track. Bringing more fans to the race tracks can help to make the sport of racing a more exciting time for all participants.
This bill establishes a statutory framework to authorize the approval of such long term rebate programs and establish guidelines for the approval of such rebate programs by the State Gaming Commission (Commission). Adopting this bill should help to provide New York race track applicants with parameters in which to draft applications to the Commission for approval to establish systemic long range rebate programs to encourage attendance at race tracks or other gaming facilities. These types of long term rebate or fan appreciation programs are authorized and conducted by many out-of-state racing forums, but are not clearly sanctioned in New York law.
SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS:
Section 1: Adds Racing & Wagering Law section 109-b to clearly establish in the law the ability of host racetracks and OTBs to establish long term rebate or fan appreciation programs that can last for an entire racing season or calendar year for new or preferred customers who attend host race track meets or bet on such events. The definition of a rebate is a reduction in the takeout percentage, adding a bonus on winnings obtained, or awards of merchandise or services for certain previously designated customers.
The Commission must approve of the rebate programs and such programs can last up to at least one year, but may be approved for longer periods of time upon annual review by the Commission. This bill gives reasonable latitude to the Commission to establish and approve of rebate programs so that rebate program applications and approval of such programs can quickly change to reflect the betting practices within the racing industry.
There are several conditions that the applicant must abide by when administering any rebate or fan appreciation programs to protect consumer interests. The conditions are that: a disclosure of benefits of past rebate programs is required, rebates are granted solely on the amount wagered or the frequency of betting, accurate record keeping is maintained on rebate program disbursements and the rebate programs are in the best interests of racing.
There is currently no statutory framework to assist a racetrack or OTB to develop and implement long term rebate programs that can be approved by the Commission.
Many off-shore and out of state betting, houses are offering rebate or fan appreciation programs to encourage patronage of their racing events. Off shore betting houses have the freedom to establish long term betting rebate programs to secure and retain a loyal customer base. Under New York law, New York Producers are not clearly allowed to establish entire race season or annual betting rebate programs to help them secure and retain a loyal customer base. These out-of-state rebate programs may be one reason why increases in New York State betting handle has been depressed. This bill merely authorizes New York racetrack operators and OTBs to offer their patrons the same types of rebate programs that are being offered elsewhere. Further, while the Commission has authorized some rebate programs, they tend to be single event or short term programs and not the long term programs that are needed to maintain a strong fan base.
This bill is somewhat similar to S. 577-A of 2007 which also attempted to address the emerging issue of betting rebates. While this bill was vetoed by Governor Spitzer, this current bill was revised to address the concerns that were raised by that veto message. Further, this bill was amended to conform to the new statutory frame work established when forming the new State Gaming Commission. 2012 - S. 6758 Reported to Senate Finance Committee
180 days after it shall have become law.
STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 2433--A 2013-2014 Regular Sessions IN SENATE January 17, 2013 ___________Introduced by Sen. KLEIN -- read twice and ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Racing, Gaming and Wager- ing -- reported favorably from said committee and committed to the Committee on Finance -- committee discharged, bill amended, ordered reprinted as amended and recommitted to said committee AN ACT to amend the racing, pari-mutuel wagering and breeding law, in relation to authorizing the payment of rebates on pari-mutuel wagers THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM- BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: Section 1. The racing, pari-mutuel wagering and breeding law is amended by adding a new section 109-b to read as follows: S 109-B. REBATES. 1. FOR THE PURPOSES OF THIS SECTION, "REBATE" SHALL MEAN A PORTION OF PARI-MUTUEL WAGERS, OTHERWISE PAYABLE TO AN ASSOCI- ATION OR CORPORATION CONDUCTING PARI-MUTUEL BETTING AT A RACE MEETING ON RACES RUN THEREAT, WHICH IS PAID TO HOLDERS OF PARI-MUTUEL WAGERING TICKETS AND WHICH REDUCES THE AMOUNT OTHERWISE PAYABLE TO SUCH ASSOCI- ATION OR CORPORATION. SUCH TERM SHALL BE DEFINED IN RULES PROMULGATED BY THE COMMISSION AND MAY INCLUDE, BUT NOT BE LIMITED TO, REFUNDS TO HOLDERS OF PARI-MUTUEL WAGERING TICKETS OF ANY PORTION OR PERCENTAGE OF THE FULL FACE VALUE OF A PARI-MUTUEL WAGER, INCREASING THE PAYOFF OF, PAYING A BONUS ON A WINNING PARI-MUTUEL TICKET, AWARDS OF MERCHANDISE, SERVICES SUCH AS MEALS, PARKING, ADMISSION, SEATING AND PROGRAMS, FREE OR REDUCED COST PARI-MUTUEL WAGERS AND MONETARY AWARDS, OR ANY OTHER BENEFIT THAT THE STATE GAMING COMMISSION DEEMS APPROPRIATE TO REWARD HORSE RACING PATRONS FOR THEIR PARTICIPATION AT RACE MEETINGS. 2. THE STATE GAMING COMMISSION, UPON APPLICATION OF AN ASSOCIATION OR CORPORATION CONDUCTING PARI-MUTUEL BETTING AT A RACE MEETING ON RACES RUN THEREAT, MAY APPROVE THE PAYMENT OF REBATES BY SUCH ASSOCIATION OR CORPORATION FOR A REBATE PROGRAM FOR A PERIOD OF UP TO ONE YEAR, SUBJECT TO THE FOLLOWING REQUIREMENTS:EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets [ ] is old law to be omitted. LBD06752-04-3 S. 2433--A 2
A. THE APPLICANT DISCLOSES THE EXTENT OF THE REBATE PROGRAM. SUCH DISCLOSURE SHALL INCLUDE A LISTING OF THE MONETARY VALUE OF ALL REBATES PAID TO BETTORS DURING THE PREVIOUS CALENDAR YEAR, AND THE TERMS AND CONDITIONS GOVERNING THE AWARD OF REBATES TO BETTORS FOR THE CALENDAR YEAR TO WHICH THE APPLICATION APPLIES; B. THE APPLICANT PROVIDES ASSURANCES THAT THE VALUES OF THE REBATES ARE DETERMINED SOLELY BY (I) ATTENDANCE AT ONE OR MORE RACE MEETINGS, (II) THE AMOUNT WAGERED BY A BETTOR, (III) THE AMOUNT PAYABLE TO THE ASSOCIATION OR CORPORATION ON EACH WAGER, OR (IV) HOW FREQUENTLY A BETTOR WAGERS; C. THE ASSOCIATION OR CORPORATION MAINTAINS RECORDS OF ALL WAGERS SUBJECT TO A REBATE, FOR A PERIOD OF NOT LESS THAN THREE YEARS; AND D. THE APPLICANT DEMONSTRATES THAT SUCH REBATES ARE IN THE BEST INTER- ESTS OF HORSE RACING. 3. REGIONAL OFF-TRACK BETTING CORPORATIONS MAY OFFER REBATES ON WAGERS MADE ON RACES RUN BY ANY ASSOCIATION OR CORPORATION WHICH OFFERS REBATES PURSUANT TO THIS SECTION. SUCH REBATES SHALL BE SUBJECT TO THE PROVISIONS OF SUBDIVISIONS ONE AND TWO OF THIS SECTION. 4. UPON THE APPROVAL OF AN ASSOCIATION OR CORPORATION CONDUCTING PARI-MUTUEL BETTING AT A RACE MEETING ON RACES RUN THEREAT, ANOTHER RACING ASSOCIATION OR CORPORATION MAY PROVIDE BETTORS WITH REBATES ON WAGERS ON RACES RUN AT THE RACETRACK OPERATED BY SUCH APPROVING ASSOCI- ATION OR CORPORATION. ALL SUCH REBATES SHALL BE SUBJECT TO THE PROVISIONS OF SUBDIVISIONS ONE AND TWO OF THIS SECTION. S 2. This act shall take effect on the one hundred eightieth day after it shall have become a law; provided that effective immediately any rules, regulations and applications necessary to implement the provisions of this act on its effective date are authorized to be completed on or before such date.