SB 285 recently passed the Senate Finance Committee and is pending consideration by the full Senate. The measure seeks to eliminate the West Virginia Greyhound Breeding Development Fund (GBDF) and redirect all money from the Fund to the State Excess Lottery Revenue Fund. Additionally, it would eliminate the requirement that video lottery and racetrack table game licensees must also hold dog racing licenses. Eliminating these funds would significantly cripple the greyhound racing industry in the state.
What the bill does:
- It would eliminate nearly $17 million in transfers from wagers on table games and video lottery machines from the two casinos – Wheeling Island Casino and Mardi Gras Casino – and transfer that money to the Excess Lottery Revenue Fund for redistribution by the Legislature.
- It does not eliminate greyhound racing, but it does decouple the casinos from holding a dog racing license in order to offer video lottery and table games.
- $3 million of the remaining money in the Greyhound Breeders Development Fund would be used to retrain workers in the greyhound industries in the state.
- $1 million from the GBDF would be used to promote adoption of greyhounds used at the two racetracks and provide a one-time $500 tax credit for West Virginians who adopt a greyhound between the bill’s effective date and July 1, 2023.
Since the bill deals with very specific programs and funding, it will not impact AKC events.
If you would like to comment on this legislation, you can do so by contacting your Senator.
A similar bill (HB 4599) that would eliminate the funding for greyhound racing is currently in the House Judiciary Committee.
Please contact AKC Government Relations at firstname.lastname@example.org with questions about this informational alert.