(A) There is hereby created in the state treasury the Ohio standardbred development fund, to consist of moneys paid into it pursuant to section 3769.08 of the Revised Code and any fees assessed for or on behalf of the Ohio sires stakes races. All fees so assessed shall be exempt from the requirements of divisions (D) and (M) of that section . All investment earnings on the cash balance in the fund shall be credited to the fund. Moneys to the credit of the fund shall be distributed on order of the state racing commission with the approval of the Ohio standardbred development commission.
(B) The Ohio standardbred development commission shall consist of three members, all to be residents of this state knowledgeable in breeding and racing, to be appointed by the governor with the advice and consent of the senate. One member shall be a standardbred breeder, and one member shall be a standardbred owner. Of the initial appointments, one member shall be appointed for a term ending June 30, 1977, and two members shall be appointed for terms ending June 30, 1979. Thereafter, appointments for other than unexpired terms shall be for four years. Terms shall begin the first day of July and end the thirtieth day of June. Any member appointed to fill a vacancy occurring prior to the expiration of the term for which the member's predecessor was appointed shall hold office for the remainder of that term. Any member shall continue in office subsequent to the expiration date of the member's term until a successor takes office. Members shall receive no compensation, except that they shall be paid actual and necessary expenses from the Ohio standardbred development fund. The state racing commission also shall be reimbursed from the fund for actual expenses approved by the development commission. The development commission may elect one member to serve as secretary.
(C) Upon application not later than the first day of December from the harness tracks conducting races with pari-mutuel wagering, other than agricultural expositions and fairs, the Ohio standardbred development commission , after a hearing and not later than the twentieth day of January, shall allocate and approve all available moneys for colt races for two-year-old and three-year-old colts and fillies, both trotting and pacing. Separate races for fillies shall be provided at each age and gait. Up to five races and a championship race shall be scheduled for each of the eight categories of age, sex, and gait. The allocations shall take into account the time of year that racing colts is feasible, the equity and continuity of the proposed dates for racing events, and the amounts to be added by the tracks, looking to the maximum benefit for those participating in the races. Representatives of the tracks and the Ohio harness horsemen's association shall be given an opportunity to be heard before the allocations are made. No races shall be contested earlier than the first day of May or later than the first day of November; all permit holders operating extended pari-mutuel meetings between those dates shall be entitled to at least three races. No funds for a race shall be allocated to and paid to a permit holder by the development commission unless the permit holder adds at least twenty-five per cent to the amount allocated by the development commission, and not less than five thousand dollars to each race.
Colts and fillies eligible to the races shall be only those sired by a standardbred stallion that was registered with the state racing commission and stood in the state the entire breeding season of the year the colt or filly was conceived .
If the development commission concludes that sufficient funds are available to add aged races without reducing purse levels of the colt and filly races, the development commission may allocate funds to four-year-old and up races of each sex and gait with Ohio eligibility required as set forth in this section.
(D) The state racing commission may allocate an amount not to exceed five per cent of the total Ohio standardbred development fund available in any one calendar year to research projects directed toward improving the breeding, raising, racing, and health and soundness of horses in the state and toward education or promotion of the industry.
Effective Date: 09-05-2001; 04-04-2007 .
Related Legislative Provision: See 129th General AssemblyFile No.39, SB 171, §4 .