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New Jersey May Extend Purse Subsidies Through 2029

New Jersey’s state legislature is voting Jan. 8 on Assembly Bill 5893, which would extend annual subsidies for horse racing purses through the state’s 2029 fiscal year.

If approved Monday, the bill would go to Gov. Phil Murphy to be signed into law. 

The financial subsidies go toward racing purses until state fiscal year 2023, and the fiscal year 2024 budget also provided $20 million for purse subsidies. What Bill 5893 does is require the appropriation of funds for horse racing purses in an additional five fiscal years, through fiscal year 2029.

Under current state law, $20 million is allocated annually, split between Thoroughbred and Standardbred racing.

At present, the funds are distributed by the New Jersey Racing Commission, which gives 100% of the Thoroughbred funding to Monmouth Park for overnight purses. Of the remaining $10 million, which goes to Standardbred racing, 60% will be allocated to Meadowlands Racetrack overnight purses; 16% to Freehold Raceway overnight purses; 12% to the New Jersey Sire Stakes purses; 6% to purse bonuses for New Jersey-sired horses; and 6% for breeders awards purses.

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As a condition of receiving the subsidies, the recipients must report to the legislature, the governor, and the NJRC on the uses of funds from the preceding year.

When voted on Jan. 4 by the state’s budget and appropriations committee, it received 11 yes votes against zero votes against, while two members did not vote. 

State attorney general Matthew Platkin oversees the NJRC. His office, in an email, said it does not comment on pending legislation.

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