Ohio HBPA Board Meeting
11:00 am, Friday, September 15th, 2023
Ohio HBPA Main Office, Grove City, OH
Members Present: President Joe Poole Directors: Nancy Adams, Linda Carrera, Bobby Cline, Mark Doering, Jeff Jarvis, Bruce Miller, Brian Poe, Mike Rone, George Sikora, Kristi Tumblin
Members Unable to Attend: Susan Anderson
Others Present: Executive Director Dave Basler, OHBPA Lobbyist Tom Pappas
Call to Order/ Approval of Minutes:
President Poole called the meeting to order. After review President Poole moved and Director Miller seconded a motion to approve the minutes of the July 11, 2023 Ohio HBPA board of directors meeting. Motion passed.
Director Anderson is automatically granted an excused absence for this meeting as it was a live racing day at Belterra Park and she had a horse entered.
Special Order of Business:
Ohio HBPA lobbyist Tom Pappas updated the board on legislative happenings at the state house including the anticipated formation of a gaming study committee which will be headed by Representative Edwards and will include horse racing.
Executive Director’s Report:
The executive director provided updates on the various lawsuits still in play against HISA and updated the board on progress being made towards a standstill agreement with HISA regarding 2023 and 2024 HISA assessment fees to horsemen in the state.
Director Doering moved and President Poole seconded a motion that any current or future legal bills regarding the HISA assessment agreement or legal actions on that issue be paid from the Industry Initiative Fund. Motion passed
President Poole moved and Director Miller seconded a motion to enter executive session. Motion passed.
Discussion was held regarding a proposed settlement of the Belterra Retroactive VLT monies lawsuit including a handout with the proposed settlement negotiated by the executive director and legal counsel for Boyd Gaming.
Director Miller moved and President Poole seconded a motion to end the executive session. Motion passed.
Director Miller moved and President Poole seconded a motion to accept the written settlement offer in the Belterra Retroactive VLT monies lawsuit. Motion passed.
Purses and Wagering
Discussion was held regarding the purse accounts at all three Ohio thoroughbred tracks with the executive director detailing that through July 1, 2023 Thistledown had $6,842,011 available for purses compared to $7,324,727 available for purses on July 1, 2022. As of September 1, 2023 Mahoning Valley had $7,091,116 available for purses as compared to $6,646,069 available for purses on the same date in 2022.
Basler detailed that he was working with accounting personnel at Belterra Park to correct the purse report which currently did not show export or international fixed odds purse monies earned.
Handouts were provided to the board showing VLT results for all three thoroughbred tracks in Ohio as well as previous VLT results for comparison purposes. Belterra Park showed a net win of $6,874,888 in August 2023 down from $7,723,365 in August 2022. This was the sixth consecutive month the net win has decreased year over year at Belterra. Thistledown had a net VLT win of $15,264,483 in August down from $15,727,852 the prior August after showing a slight increase in net VLT win in July 2023 from the prior year. Mahoning Valley had a net VLT win of $13,234,126 in August up from $13,006,374 the prior August.
Budget and Finance
Director Poe moved and Director Jarvis seconded a motion to amend the agenda to add a discussion of repairs and renovations to the Ohio HBPA main office. Motion passed.
Following discussion Director Jarvis moved and President Poole seconded a motion to approve up to $50,000 from the Industry Initiative Fund on repairs and renovations to the Ohio HBPA main office with the executive director making reasonable efforts to obtain at least three bids for all work to be completed. Motion passed.
Extensive discussion was held regarding a written request for $25,000 in funding from the HBPA to support the upcoming OTBO mixed sale. No motion was made on the request.
Benevolence, Policies and Organization
Director Adams asked questions of the board regarding requirements for the Ohio HBPA to make contributions to retirement or rehoming organizations.
Discussion was held regarding the need to find a new auditing and accounting firm for the HBPA as the current firm does not have the time to audit the Ohio HBPA financials.
Director Doering moved and Director Rone seconded a motion that the executive director be authorized to find and hire a new firm to audit the Ohio HBPA 2022 financials as well as complete the 2022 HBPA 990 filing. Motion passed.
The date for the next OHBPA board meeting was set for Friday, November 10th, 2023 beginning at 11:00am at the main OHBPA office.
President Poole moved and Director Jarvis seconded a motion to adjourn. Motion passed.