Assemblyman Micah Kellner said that New York has been deprived of a legal way to bet on horse racing. They were in just a few spots, Kellner said, and they used to bring in $165 million a year.
Corporation Counsel Michael Cardozo said the City cannot be called on to bail out the state’s public benefit corporations. The OTB filed a motion to withdraw its bankruptcy reorganization petition Wednesday, saying it plans to close.
The board approved letting several betting entities start the process immediately, which would dramatically reduce delays for bettors to sign up.
John Sabini, the state racing chairman, called an emergency board meeting to look at streamlining the process for New York City OTB bettors to quickly sign up for Internet betting on state-regulated sites.
The livelihoods of about 1,000 Off-Track Betting Corp. employees are caught in a political struggle in New York’s Senate, which is now weighing two rescue plans.
The OTB board agreed in an emergency session to wait until Tuesday’s special session of the state Senate to make a decision on a shut down.
The unanimous vote of the OTB board came with a plea for the state Senate to return to Albany and vote for a rescue and reorganization plan.
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.
New York City Off-Track Betting Corp. President Greg Rayburn said Tuesday was another critical deadline for the ailing bookmaking agency’s future.