12.30.2016
Local Horsemen deny right for Finger Lakes to offer simulcast wagering due to lack of 2017 contract with track; gaming floor operations unaffected.
FARMINGTON, N.Y. (Dec. 30, 2016) – Finger Lakes Gaming & Racetrack (FLGR) officials announced this afternoon that the Finger Lakes Horsemen’s Benevolent Protective Association (FLHBPA) has voted to deny the facility the right to offer thoroughbred and harness racing simulcast wagering as of New Year’s Day. The move by the FLHBPA is in response to a contract not having been agreed to between the association and track management for 2017.
 
The shutdown of simulcast wagering has no impact on the gaming floor operations, which will remain open as usual from 8am – 4am, daily.
 
“This is an unfortunate and unnecessary step by the Horsemen,” said Chris Riegle, president and general manager of Finger Lakes Gaming & Racetrack. ”It has been very common in the past that we have gone past the first of the year in negotiating an agreement with no interruption to simulcasting.”
 
FLGR has traditionally offered simulcast wagering year-round for horseplayers. A portion of every dollar wagered on other racetracks around the country via simulcasting goes towards the purse account for live racing, which is already facing a significant shortfall due to anticipated gaming revenue declines upon the opening of del Lago Resort & Casino, just 27-miles down the Thruway to the east. By statute, 8.75 percent of gaming revenues generated at Finger Lakes are also diverted to support the purse account at the Farmington-oval.
 
“This move helps no one from our affected employees, our customers and the horsemen themselves, who now lose the proceeds that every simulcast wager generates towards their purse account, which is already projected to be down significantly in 2017 and is a major factor in our inability to come to an agreement to this point,” added Riegle.
 
Riegle concluded, “Regardless of their decision, we will continue to negotiate in good faith with the FLHPBA in finding a resolution that suits both parties so that a 2017 live racing season at Finger Lakes is successful and continues to support over 1,200 jobs locally.”
 
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About Finger Lakes Gaming & Racetrack 
In operation since 1962, the facility added gaming to its offering in 2004 and expanded again in 2013 by adding 33,000 square feet with a $12 million expansion. Nearly two million visitors annually now visit the facility highlighted by over 1,500 gaming machines, the 448-seat Vineyard Buffet, Remedy Bar & Lounge, well as thoroughbred racing. Gaming floor operations are open 8 a.m. – 4 a.m., daily. For more information, visit www.FingerLakesGaming.com.

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