Michigan And Jerry Campbell Letting Bob Ficano Take The Heat For Pinnacle Race Course

And it is all BULLSHIT.

WXYZ VIDEO: Wayne County Exec. Ficano responds to audit critical of Pinnacle deal

Detroit Free Press

Audit says Wayne County blew $35.2 million on investment plan

Both the Newspaper and flip side on WXYZ are making Bob Ficano out some devious schemer when he’s anything but. Let’s get something straight here on both of these news media outlets including the Free Press quoting some off the wall right-wing source ( Mackinac Center for Public Policy, Michigan Capitol Confidential ) that Michael LaFaive of the Mackinac Center is apart of. I addressed these group long ago when nothing but bashings of this Race Track were constantly being bombarded on.

Yet The Michigan Capitol Confidential eventually came out with was a very accurate article WHY Pinnacle never had a chance from the beginning.

‘Schizophrenic’ State Planning.

Excerpt:

The state of Michigan and Wayne County showered millions upon millions of tax dollars on the Pinnacle Race Course in Huron Township in 2008. The track was seen as the start of a tourist attraction that would draw fans from surrounding states and Canada, create thousands of jobs and generate millions in state revenue.

Yet state legislators and state government roadblocks were damaging the very project they were pumping millions of dollars of incentives into, leading to what one expert called a “schizophrenic behavior.”

Fact is people with these latest PRC audit news covered by both newspaper and its flip side TV news. Jerry Campbell needs to step up to the plate here because letting the one man who broke his back in every which way but loose to help Pinnacle get built and launched take the heat alone is cowardly and classless.

And lets put things in their proper perspective here for one final time. Basically because I’m tired of writing this fact over and over.

A report as far back as 1999 that was requested by the Michigan House Of Representatives wanted but yet went completely ignored after they received it. I suggest reading it in its entirety.

FISCAL FOCUS
CHALLENGES TO MICHIGAN’S HORSE RACING INDUSTRY

Excerpts:

OPTIONS TO AID HORSE RACING

Slots, Card Rooms, and Video Lottery Terminals (VLTs)

Some states permit other forms of gambling, in addition to pari-mutuel wagering, at horse racing tracks. Three states allow slots (Delaware, Iowa, and New Mexico), two allow card rooms (Florida and Minnesota), and three allow VLTs (Oregon, Rhode Island, and West Virginia). One state (Louisiana) permits both slot machines and VLTs at its pari-mutuel tracks.

“” Note “” Understand this was a report in 1999, since there are even more States now that have implemented further gaming to even the playing field out with Horse Racing.

Some states permit other forms of gambling, in addition to pari-mutuel wagering, at horse racing tracks. Three states allow slots (Delaware, Iowa, and New Mexico), two allow card rooms (Florida and Minnesota), and three allow VLTs (Oregon, Rhode Island, and West Virginia). One state (Louisiana) permits both slot machines and VLTs at its pari-mutuel tracks. “” Note “” Understand this was a report in 1999, since there are even more States now that have implemented further gaming to even the playing field out with Horse Racing.

Slot operations opened at Windsor Raceway in Ontario, Canada in December 1998. Under the arrangement brokered between the industry and the Province of Ontario, 20 percent of the net win is split equally between the track and horsemen purse pools. Industry sources report that the addition of slots has had a positive affect on attendance, wagering, purses, and the number of live racing dates at the track.

Slot machines, card rooms, and VLTs could allow the tracks in Michigan to compete directly with Native American and Detroit casinos for the gambling dollars available in the state. Introducing these new forms of gambling at the tracks could attract new customers, which might increase total pari-mutuel wagering — both live and simulcast. While the increased wagering level would aid the industry, a portion of the revenue from slots, card rooms, and/or VLTs could be earmarked for breeders’ awards, purses, track improvements, and/or promotions — similar to the Windsor, Ontario model.

Off-Track Betting

By far the most popular option in other states, off-track betting (OTB) provides people with access to live racing and pari-mutuel wagering taking place in other parts of the state without having to attend a race track. For example, the surrounding states of Illinois, Indiana, and Ohio, and the province of Ontario, Canada, all permit off-track betting.

In Michigan, there are no pari-mutuel tracks in the upper half of the Lower Peninsula or in the Upper Peninsula. Mount Pleasant Meadows, a small, mixed-breed track, is the northernmost track in the state, but it is not readily accessible to people from the northern portion of the state. Off-track betting outlets strategically placed in the northern Lower Peninsula and the Upper Peninsula would provide an outlet for people in these parts of the state to wager on live horse racing in Michigan. Similarly, the state’s only all thoroughbred race track is located in Muskegon, a significant distance from the population that was accustomed to wagering on live thoroughbred racing at Ladbroke DRC in Livonia. ” Note ” Pinnacle Race Course in New Boston.

Off-track betting would increase live wagering levels and, therefore, help both the tracks and horsemen. Unlike simulcast wagering, live race wagering is not taxed by the state, thus it provides additional revenue for improvements at the tracks and for purses.

Revenue Sharing

Another option would be to share a portion of casino revenue with the tracks and the horsemen — similar to a revenue-sharing arrangement that exists between the riverboat casino industry and the horse racing industry in Indiana. The statute permitting riverboat gaming in Indiana earmarks 65 cents of the $3.00 riverboat admission tax to the pari-mutuel horse racing industry. These funds are distributed to various segments of the racing industry. Of the total distributed, 40 percent is earmarked for purses (divided equally between thoroughbred and standardbred), 30 percent is earmarked to Indiana’s only race track (Hoosier Park), 20 percent is earmarked for breed development (divided equally between thoroughbred and standardbred), and 10 percent is earmarked for promotion. In 1998, more than $22.2 million in riverboat admissions tax revenue was transferred to the horse racing industry in Indiana. Daily average purses for the 1999 racing meet will surpass $200,000.

The Indiana arrangement was recently used as the model for a similar revenue sharing agreement in Illinois. Under a new Illinois law permitting a riverboat to operate in Cook County, 15 percent of the adjusted gross revenues from the boat will be directed to the horse racing industry (divided equally between purses and the tracks). This agreement is designed to help
the industry reopen Arlington International Racecourse outside of Chicago, which closed in 1997 partially in response to competition from riverboats in Illinois and Indiana. Arlington will reopen in 2000, due in large part to the new revenue sharing agreement.

Another example of revenue-sharing exists in New Jersey where simulcast wagering is authorized in Atlantic City casinos. A portion of the revenue from casino simulcasting is distributed to assist racetracks and horsemen organizations which demonstrate that casino simulcasting has negatively affected their financial well-being. In 1998, nearly $2.1 million was
distributed directly to New Jersey tracks and to horsemen from casino simulcasting revenues. In Michigan, current law prohibits simulcast wagering in Detroit casinos. The casino industry in Michigan does not currently share revenue with the horse racing industry.

CONCLUSION

The economic impact of horse racing extends beyond the gates of Michigan’s parimutuel racetracks. The industry contributes substantially to the Michigan economy through its creation of jobs, income, and state revenue. The Horse Racing Law of 1995 provided temporary assistance to the ailing industry; however, the horse racing industry is again in a precarious situation, primarily due to increases in other gambling outlets in the state (Native American casinos and Detroit casinos). Industry observers believe that major changes to the horse racing industry are necessary for it to survive in the intensely competitive gambling/entertainment market that has developed since enactment of the law in 1996.

In an effort to promote the cooperation of all factions of the horse racing industry, the FY 1999-2000 Department of Agriculture budget requires that the Office of Racing Commissioner, in collaboration with the horse racing industry, develop a long-range plan for assuring the viability of the horse racing industry in Michigan. This plan is to include requisite statutory changes and potential revenue diversification options necessary to assure the survival of the horse racing industry in Michigan.

A forward-thinking business plan, with input from all factions of the horse racing industry, could identify the tools needed to address the challenges currently facing the industry. Crafting the Horse Racing Law of 1995 required the unprecedented cooperation of all involved with the horse racing industry. A similar level of cooperation will be needed to effectively address the challenges facing the industry today.

End

Another report requested again in 2002 on the very same subject and again ignored after the House received it.

Horse Racing in Michigan. An Economic Impact Study

Face it the Detroit Free Press , WXYZ and any other news outlet within this State can place all the blame on one individual and the target seems to be Bob Ficano here. But the reality is MICHIGAN IS FULL OF SHIT.

With Windsor across the river in Canada, Indiana, and with both Illinois & Ohio only one signature away by their Governors from signing legislation into law that was passed in both the House & Senate in each State. Michigan will have been surrounded by other States that had a brain and common sense that implementing Slots and whatever else that was needed to keep their Race Tracks alive not only saving the Horse Racing Industry there but benefit themselves to economic recoveries through greater revenue impact.

Something Michigan has absolutely refused to do. Come into the 21st century. And everyone within this Horse Racing Industry is beyond fed up with what was Governor’s Snyder’s big inauguration speech was about not leaving anybody behind.

This Industry was thrown to the wolves from the moment Detroit opened three casinos. Our Office of Racing Office was dissolved by Gov. Granholm in 2009. And Horse Racing was placed under the Michigan Gaming Control Board that could have cared less about Horse Racing with their main focus only on Casinos.

So its Bob Ficano’s fault that Pinnacle Race Course failed? I don’t think so. And I don’t think he threw away $35 Million on attempting to Invest on a Thoroughbred Race Track for the future. Because that future should have finally pointed to some legislation that would put Horse Racing on an even playing field.

My God pari-mutual racing and Horse Racing was signed into law in 1933. Long before the Lottery in 1972 and Tribunal Casinos in the later 80s than 3 Commercial ones in Detroit in 1996.

Yet reports and studies given to the State have turned a blind eye to what they have stated and suggested for Horse Racings survival.

But I know one thing, Jerry Campbell needs to face the same camera Bob Ficano has had to and explain his actions of closing simulcasting down at the end of the 2010 season and further support the man now under such scrutiny over Pinnacle Race Course. You don’t let the one person who was completely in your corner doing everything he could to help you build and open your business stand there and take the heat solely because you made some very bad and stupid decisions. There are a lot of tracks that had to cancel their 2011 meet because of financial reasons but they didn’t stop simulcasting.

You put yourself in front of those cameras and state who is really at fault here and set the whole record straight. Your own mistakes and the biggest entity that has sat here watching Horse Racings slow death. MICHIGAN

Because it is Michigan that is the biggest failure of all about this and they know it.

Pinnacle was doomed from the start and it was this States inability and refusal to take the steps necessary to insure that this Horse Racing Industry that once stood alone in holding up this State through the revenue it created would make sure we stayed alive.

Michigan not Bob Ficano is responsible for the demise of Pinnacle Race Course and they will be solely responsible when every Horse Track in this state is closed down for good.

The Detroit Free Press, WXYZ and the Auditor need to comprehend and exhibit some truth here instead of pointing the finger at one man and anybody else they can think of but the actual responsible party for this failure.

MICHIGAN…… They have thrown away far more than just $35 Million.

Let’s tell the truth here and put the blame where it belongs.

Michigan’s Hypocritical Attitude on Gaming ~ From Casinos to Charity Casinos but continue to Say No to the Horse Racing Tracks

Michigan’s Ball and Chain around Horse Racing’s neck.

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Filed under Breaking News, Casino, Detroit News, Government, Governor Snyder, Huron Township Michigan, Mi. Governor Rick Snyder, Michigan Governor, Michigan Horse Racing, Michigan Horse Racing News, Michigan Legislators, Michigan News, Michigan Politics, Michigan Thoroughbred Horse Racing, News, Pinnacle Race Course, Politics, Racinos, The Michigan Gaming Control Board

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