Wyoming Passes Wagering Bill

Wyoming governor signs historic wagering bill.

Press Release
February 28, 2013

wyoming horse racing bill

Gov. Matt Mead signs House Bill 25. Behind him (L-R) are representative Sue Wallis, Laurie Urbigit, Eugene Joyce, Karen Joyce, Sherlyn Kaiser and Senator John Schiffer.

Governor Matt Mead signed House Bill 25 (Enrolled Act 46) Wednesday which will allow the Wyoming Pari-mutuel Commission to issue rules allowing pari-mutuel wagering on historic horse races. Wyoming will be the second state in the country to statutorily allow this type of wagering. Arkansas passed legislation in 2001. Kentucky allowed this activity through the rule making process in 2011.

New technology in pari-mutuel events will support and create jobs downstream in the horse industry, such as the breeders, veterinarians, farriers, jockeys, and on-site personnel. By allowing a more diverse revenue stream, this legislation helps a licensee improve his economic viability by increasing the number of horsemen participating at a live race meet. This legislation further directs a revenue stream to the cities and counties where off track betting sites are authorized and operated.  The increase in the number of live race meets also will provide an estimated economic impact in those communities of $1 million for each race day.

“We want to thank the Wyoming Legislators and Governor Mead for giving a leg up to an industry that two years ago was flat on its back” said Eugene Joyce, Managing Partner of Wyoming Horse Racing LLC, the only licensed track operator in Wyoming. “This will allow our industry to expand the number of race days and to dramatically increase purse money and breeder awards for the Horsemen.”

House Bill 25 was introduced by Representative Sue Wallis (HD 52 Campbell County) and Senator John Schiffer (SD 22 Johnson & Sheridan County). It passed the House of Representatives by a vote of 44–15 with the Senate approving the bill 24-6.  The bill was supported by the Wyoming All Breeds Racing Association and the Wyoming Horse Council.