State News
6:27 am
Thu January 30, 2014

Il lawmakers prevent cuts in horse-racing industry

Last-minute action by Illinois lawmakers will prevent cuts in the horse-racing industry. Tracks had been threatening to slash the number of race days unless Illinois reauthorized "advanced deposit wagering" -- basically a form of online betting. 

Lawmakers rushed it through Wednesday with a minimum of debate. A few hours later, the governor signed it into law. State Representative Lou Lang, a Democrat from Skokie, called the situation "critical."

"This is critical for the horse-racing industry, which is an important agri-business part of our state. Many think of this as just gambling,  gambling,  gambling but there are thousands of jobs in the horse-racing industry."

The Illinois Racing Board, which regulates the industry, depends on the Internet-based wagering for much of its funding.