Ohio HBPA Board Meeting
11:00 am, Tuesday, September 19, 2017
Sanese Center, Columbus, OH
President: Joe Poole Directors: Randy Blevins, Mark Doering, Jeff Jarvis, Mark Kuntz, Bonnie Rogoff, Bruce Ryan, Kristina Tumblin
Members Unable to Attend:
Bobby Cline, Doug Cowans, Mike Rone, Robin Schuster
Executive Director Dave Basler. Ohio HBPA lobbyist Tom Pappas
Call To Order/ Approval of Minutes:
President Poole called the meeting to order. After review Director Blevins moved and Director Ryan seconded a motion to approve the minutes of the July 18, 2017 meeting of the OHBPA board of directors. Motion passed.
Director Blevins moved and President Poole seconded a motion to grant excused absences to each of the board members missing today’s meeting due to the fact that living racing days were added at both Thistledown and Belterra Park after the date that this OHBPA board meeting had been scheduled. Motion passed.
President Poole moved and Director Tumblin seconded a motion to grant Director Jarvis an excused absence from the July 18, 2017 board meeting as he had disclosed to the board that he would be on a long planned trip with his father in Alaska when the board meeting date was set. Motion passed.
Special Order of Business
Ohio HBPA lobbyist Tom Pappas updated the board on the state’s bi-annual budget bill which passed at the end of May. Included in the discussion was a provision for various commissions, including the Ohio State Racing Commission, which would allow for up to 2.5% of operating funds held by those commissions to be swept into the state’s general operating budget.
Pappas detailed that he had worked with the executive director to draft a letter to the racing commission addressing our concerns that monies held in the Ohio Thoroughbred Fund should not be subject to the aforementioned provision.
Pappas also detailed that he had spoken with Ohio’s Director of Budget Management expressing our concerns and that the director had assured him that the Breed funds would not be subject to this provision.
Discussion was also held regarding the hearing the Ohio State Racing Commission will hold in order to determine the percentage of VLT revenue at Belterra Park which will go to the Ohio HBPA under the newly adopted rule 3769-2-43.
Executive Director’s Report:
The executive director updated the board on the Out of Competition testing hearing held by the Ohio State Racing Commission in August. Basler detailed that he expressed to the commission the Ohio HBPA’s position that any out of competition testing rules passed in Ohio should be limited to testing for prohibited substances which could not likely be found in post race tests such as blood doping agents and certain venoms.
Basler also expressed to the commission the Ohio HBPA’s concerns with recently passed ARCI model rules concerning Out Of Competition testing as overreaching and trying to accomplish many regulatory objectives that had little to nothing to do with out of competition testing.
Basler informed the board that he had worked with representatives of the Ohio Harness Horsemen’s Association on this issue and that they also testified to the commission expressing similar concerns.
Basler updated the board on preparations for the upcoming OSRC medication hearing to be held the following week. Stating that a meeting and conference call had been held and Ohio practicing vets Drs. Scott Shell, John Reichert and Dan Wilson would be testifying at the hearing as well as Dr. Clara Fenger founder of the NAARV and National HBPA medication advisor and world renowned equine toxicologist Dr. Tom Tobin.
Discussion was also held regarding a recent Kentucky Circuit Court judge ruling overturning a methocarbamol positive and reinstating the purse for the race based in part on the fact that the judge had determined that the RMTC methocarbamol threshold which Kentucky had adopted was not based on science and thus violated a provision requiring such in Kentucky law.
Director Doering moved and Director Jarvis seconded a motion to enter executive session for the purposes of discussing ongoing issues at both Thistledown and Belterra Park. Motion passed.
The board returned from executive session and no motions were made.
Purses and Wagering
Basler updated the board on the current status of the purse accounts at all three of the states thoroughbred tracks. Discussion was also help regarding certain variances at Belterra Park and Thistledown with the executive director explaining that the variance at Belterra Park between 2017 and 2016 was that credits to the purse account for export handle had not been made through the end of August this year. Basler stated that he was working with members of the Belterra Park accounting team to insure that the issue was rectified.
The variances at Thistledown were due to the fact that the track is approximately 6 weeks behind where they were last year in making required payments for VLT revenues to the purse account.
The executive director provided handouts detailing VLT results at each of Ohio’s seven commercial race tracks for August showing that all three thoroughbred tracks had year over year net win increases and discussion was held regarding those numbers.
Benevolence, Policies and Organization
Extensive discussion was held regarding the Ohio Thoroughbred Fund going forward with many ideas being suggested and discussed amongst the board. Director Jarvis moved and Director Kuntz seconded a motion that the Ohio HBPA recommends to the Thoroughbred Advisory Board that condition 11 of the Ohio Thoroughbred Fund be changed to read as follows for 2018; “All Ohio-funded non-claiming races, scheduled on the main track, must go if there are six or more betting interests. Any such races scheduled on the turf must go if there are eight or more betting interests. All Ohio-funded claiming races shall be used with seven or more betting interests. Registered Ohio-breds shall be preferred in all races after any condition eligibility preference has been observed. If an Ohio-funded overnight race draws more entries than the gate will accommodate, the race may be split. The Ohio Thoroughbred Race Fund share of the purse may be split accordingly.” Motion passed.
Director Kuntz moved and Director Jarvis seconded a motion that the Ohio HBPA recommends to the Thoroughbred Advisory Board that Ohio thoroughbred track racing secretaries be directed that a race for Ohio-breds shall be used over an open race with the same number of betting interests. Motion passed.
Director Doering moved and Director Ryan seconded a motion that the Ohio HBPA recommend to the Thoroughbred Advisory Board that the Buckeye Native Stakes for Ohio-Accredited 3-year-olds and up and the Miss Southern Ohio Stakes for Ohio-Accredited fillies and mares 3-year-olds and up, both to be run on the turf at Belterra Park, be added to the Ohio Stakes schedule in 2018. Both of these stakes were run on the turf at River Downs until the late 1990’s. Motion passed.
Following a brief review of the one page document Director Jarvis moved and Director Doering seconded a motion that President Poole be authorized to sign the revised Affiliation Agreement between the Ohio HBPA and the National HBPA. Motion passed.
Discussion was held regarding the date of the next Ohio HBPA board meeting with it being determined that the next meeting would be help on Thursday, November 16th, 2017 beginning at 11am at the Sanese Center.
Director Blevins moved and Director Doering seconded a motion to adjourn. Motion passed.