Recapture Lawsuit Update
Judge to Take 30 More Days to Consider Lawsuit Aimed at Replenishing Horsemen's Purse Accounts After Tracks Take 'Recapture';
Decision Now Expected by End of August
The Cook County judge considering the case over whether the state government must by law replenish the horsemen's purse accounts after tracks take "recapture" has indicated it may be another 30 days before he renders his decision.
A ruling had been expected by the end of July. It is now anticipated to occur before the end of August. We do not know how the judge will rule in this case but we are encouraged that he is giving the arguments due consideration.
At issue is the state's failure to reimburse the horsemen's purse accounts after tracks remove dollars from those accounts, under the practice known as recapture, to subsidize their own operations. State law clearly states the Illinois General Assembly "shall appropriate sufficient funds" to reimburse the purse accounts for the amount of recapture taken.
This litigation - brought jointly by the Illinois Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association, Illinois Harness Horsemen's Association, Illinois Horsemen's Benevolent & Protective Association, and Illinois Thoroughbred Breeders and Owners Foundation - is aimed at getting the purse accounts at all three Illinois tracks reimbursed for the approximate $11 million removed from them in 2017. If our suit is successful, the purse accounts would be made whole while the racetracks' income would be unaffected. In short, it would be a win-win for the entire industry.
We will continue to keep Illinois owners and trainers updated on any important developments.