ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — Officials are warning that the New York City Off-Track Betting Corp. could be forced to shut down in December unless state lawmakers approve a bailout of the operation.

City OTB board chair Larry Schwartz and president Greg Rayburn said Sunday that state lawmakers need to intervene to keep betting parlors and horse racing tracks open.

A shutdown would reverberate throughout the state’s horse racing industry, threatening up to 70,000 jobs.

About 500 workers are expected to be laid-off Tuesday.

Schwartz said he wasn’t trying to bully lawmakers. He said he was stating a “financial and legal fact.”

The state-owned New York City OTB is laboring to emerge from bankruptcy.

Lawmakers are being asked to consider a plan that includes concessions from the business, its unions and creditors.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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