Introduce Bill to Aid Southern Illinois Racing: Call for One-Third Cut in State Take If Handle is Under 00,000, Daily Racing Form, 1955-06-09


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Introduce Bill to Aid Southern Illinois Racing Calls for One-Third Cut in State • Take if Handle Is Under00,000 SPRINGFIELD, 111., June 8— A bill de-j signed to aid Fairmount Park, at Collins-ville, where wagering and attendance are down sharply this spring, was introduced in the Illinois Senate Tuesday. The measure introduced by Senators George Drach, majority whip from Springfield; Arthur Bidwill, president pro tern from River Forest and Everett Peters, St. Joseph, all Republicans, provides for a one-third reduction in the states usual 6 per cent "take" whenever the days mutuel handle at any thoroughbred track falls below 00,000. The measure was reported recommended by the Illinois Racing Board. Gov. William Strattons office said the bill was aimed to aid Fairmount where wagering is down 21 per cent from last years comparative figures. Fairmount has encountered an unusual amount of rain this spring and also opened at the earliest date in years. The measure likewise will aid Cahokia Downs which will follow the" Fairmount session. Rep. Joseph Kohout, Chicago, president of the central division of the Horsemens Benevolent and Protective Association, is supporting the measure. Peters said that Fairmount and Cahokia probably wouldnt be able to reopen next year if the present 6 per cent state "take" j was not reduced. Drach pointed out that I many states permit a "graduated tax" on track wagers so that small tracks would not be forced out of business. This bill follows the same principle, he said. Drach added that the bill probably would be amended, saying /that it was "badly drawn." As it was introduced, it applies to all tracks in the state, which Drach said was not the intention of the sponsors. Under the provisions of the bill, the larger tracks also would be permitted the 2 per cent reduction if total wagers fell to 00,000 or less. On Tuesday, Ray C- Bennigsen, general manager of Fairmount, announced that the track would revert to a five-night a week schedule, with Mondays being, dark for the rest of the meeting with the exception of July 4. As a result, the meeting will run through July 22 instead of closing on July 16 as would have been the case with a six-night a week operation.

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