Arrow-right Camera
The Spokesman-Review Newspaper
Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Eye On Boise

Off-track betting bill passes the Senate

An off-track betting bill has passed the Senate on a 26-9 vote; HB 191 would let racetracks at county fairgrounds that already have licenses for betting on simulcasts of races elsewhere transfer their licenses to a more suitable location, rather than the track itself. "This will not expand gaming, nor the number of locations," said Sen. Patti Anne Lodge, R-Huston, the Senate sponsor of the bill. Instead, she said, it will allow the small tracks to make more money to upgrade their live racing facilities. Sen. Jeff Siddoway, R-Terreton, spoke in favor of the bill. "It does create jobs," he said. "It really does have an effect on rural Idaho, and I will urge your aye vote." There was no debate against the bill, despite the number of "no" votes; a number of lawmakers routinely vote against any legislation regarding gambling on moral grounds. The bill, which earlier passed the House, now heads to the governor.

Betsy Z. Russell
Betsy Z. Russell joined The Spokesman-Review in 1991. She currently is a reporter in the Boise Bureau covering Idaho state government and politics, and other news from Idaho's state capital.

Follow Betsy online: