Michigan tracks facing Nov. 5 shutdown
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The immediate future of racing in Michigan is in jeopardy for the second time this year as the racetracks prepare to cease operations as of Nov. 5 due to the lack of funding from the state, a situation made even more dire by Gov. Jennifer Granholm’s recent line item vetoing of virtually all of the monies directed toward horse racing.
The first time this year that funding issues came into play was in late July when state money ran out to operate the Office of Racing Commissioner, which resulted in the Michigan Harness Horsemen’s Association taking $75,000 out of its purse pool to provide funding so that Hazel Park could continue its live race meet.
This time, it appears that avenue is not likely, so unless some sort of legislative relief comes in the next week a total shutdown of the tracks could be imminent. Live racing is currently being held at Northville Downs, but with a state auditor necessary at all the tracks because of simulcasting, all sites would have to close because there would be no money to pay that person.