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Existing law, the Horse Racing Law, provides that if the total amount paid to the state as license fees by racing associations and fairs is less than $40,000,000 in any calendar year, all associations and fairs that conducted live racing during the year of the shortfall shall remit to the state, on a pro rata basis according to the amount paid as license fees by each association or fair, the amount necessary to bring the total amount paid to the state as license fees to $40,000,000.
This bill would delete those provisions and instead provide that, notwithstanding any other provision of law and in lieu of any license fee payable to the state prescribed for or referred to in specified provisions of the Horse Racing Law, any association or fair that conducts a racing meeting shall pay a license fee to fund the California Horse Racing Board and the equine drug testing program in accordance with a formula devised by the board in consultation with the industry, as provided. The bill would provide that the license fee reductions resulting from these provisions, after payments to fund the board and the equine drug testing program, shall be distributed as specified for thoroughbred racing, quarter horse racing, harness racing, and all other breeds.
Existing law provides that revenues from satellite wagering are deposited in a separate account in the Fair and Exposition Fund and that, if those revenues exceed $11,000,000 in a fiscal year, 98 percent of the excess is transferred to the Fair and Exposition Fund for specified allocations. Existing law also provides that, after the Fair and Exposition Fund receives more than $13,000,000 in a fiscal year, half of the excess is transferred to the General Fund.
This bill would require, on July 1, 2009, and each July 1 thereafter, the transfer of $32,000,000 from the General Fund to be paid into the State Treasury to the credit of the separate account of the Fair and Exposition Fund created for satellite wagering revenues, and would continuously appropriate those moneys for allocation for the financial support of the network of California fairs. The bill would require that all of the amount in excess of $11,000,000 be transferred to the Fair and Exposition Fund for allocation as specified in existing law, except that no part of this transferred money would be further transferred to the General Fund.
Existing law requires the first $1,100,000 of all revenues distributed to racing associations for payment to the state as license fees to be deposited in a special account in the Fair and Exposition Fund and continuously appropriated to the Department of Food and Agriculture for supplementing purses at fair meetings to achieve certain specified purposes.
This bill would instead require the first $1,100,000 of all funds for distribution as purses generated at satellite wagering facilities statewide from wagering on thoroughbred horse racing to be deposited in that special account for those purposes.
Under existing law, revenues distributed to the state as license fees from horse racing are required to be deposited in the Fair and Exposition Fund and are continuously appropriated to the Department of Food and Agriculture for various regulatory and general governmental purposes.
Because this bill would require that General Fund moneys be deposited into, and distributed from, that fund, the bill would make an appropriation.
This bill would become effective on July 1, 2009.