From: Kentucky HBPA
September 9, 2015
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
KENTUCKY LEGISLATIVE COMMITTEE RULES RACING COMMISSION REGULATION DEFICIENT
The Administrative Regulation Review Subcommittee (ARRS) voted late Tuesday, September 8, that the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission (KHRC) regulation allowing racetracks the option to card Lasix free races is deficient.
Representative Denny Butler, citing safety and health concerns for both jockeys and equine athletes, called for the vote. The non-partisan committee voted 6 to 2 that the regulation is deficient.
Representative Mary Lou Marzian, co-chair of the ARRS, suggested to KHRC representatives appearing before the committee that the regulation be deferred pending a decision by the Kentucky Attorney General on the constitutionality of the regulation. The KHRC spurned that suggestion. The ARRS then voted to find the regulation deficient.
At a previous meeting of the ARRS, the regulation was deferred and Senator Ernie Harris, co-chair of the ARRS, recommended that the parties seek an opinion from the Kentucky Attorney General. The Kentucky HBPA, in conjunction with the National HBPA, filed a request for the opinion. That request is still pending.
“We sincerely appreciate the efforts of the ARRS committee,” commented Rick Hiles, President of the KHBPA. “We provided a tremendous amount of information regarding horsemen’s concerns with the regulation. They listened and asked relevant questions of both the KHRC and the Kentucky and National HBPAs.”
“On behalf of the National HBPA, it is gratifying that the ARRS committee recognized from its bipartisan vote, the constitutional infirmities with this regulation,” Peter Ecabert, General Counsel of the National HBPA, explained. “Along with the health and welfare issues for both the jockeys and equine athletes that were at risk with this regulation. The committee’s recognition of the serious problems with this regulation is important not only to the Kentucky horsemen, but horsemen across the country in their efforts to arrive at a uniform medication policy.”
Bob Beck, Chairman of the KHRC, met with Rick, Frank Jones, and Marty Maline of the KHBPA along with Peter Ecabert and Eric Hamelback, C.E.O. of the National HBPA, in an effort to arrive at a compromise on the regulation. While the meeting was productive, the parties were not able to reach a compromise position acceptable to both sides.