TITLE 28

Sports and Amusements

CHAPTER 4. HORSE RACING IN KENT COUNTY

Subchapter I. License to Conduct Racing Meet; Taxes


Horse racing for stake, purse or reward at and upon a race track of no less than 5/8 of a mile in circumference may be conducted in Kent County subject to this chapter. Such horse racing may be conducted during either daylight or evening hours, or both.

28 Del. C. 1953, § 401; 56 Del. Laws, c. 119.;

Any person desiring to conduct horse racing for any stake, purse or reward in Kent County during any calendar year shall first obtain a license to do so from the Delaware Thoroughbred Racing Commission.

28 Del. C. 1953, § 402; 56 Del. Laws, c. 119; 63 Del. Laws, c. 143, § 14.;

(a) Any person desiring to conduct a horse racing meet within Kent County during any calendar year shall file an application with the Secretary of the Commission on or before a date to be fixed by the Commission. The application shall specify the days on which such racing is desired to be conducted and shall be in such form and supply such data and information, including a blueprint of the track and specifications of its surface and blueprints and specifications of buildings and grandstand on the land where the meet is to be conducted as the Commission prescribes; provided, however, that it shall not be necessary for the applicant to submit blueprints and specifications with the application if the race meet for which a license is requested to be conducted is at a track for which the Commission granted a license the preceding year.

(b) The blueprints and specifications shall be subject to the approval of the Commission, which, at the expense of the applicant, may order such engineering examination thereof as the Commission deems necessary. The erection and construction of the track, grandstand and buildings of any applicant for a license to conduct horse racing under this chapter shall be subject to the inspection of the Commission, which may order such engineering examination as the Commission deems necessary at the expense of the applicant and may employ such inspectors as the Commission considers necessary for that purpose.

(c) The Commission may reject any application for a license for any cause which it deems sufficient, and the action of the Commission shall be final.

(d) The Commission shall, on or before January 15 of each year, award all dates for horse racing in Kent County within the current year, but the dates so awarded shall not exceed 55 days in the aggregate. The decision of the Commission on the award of all dates shall be final.

(e) No more than 2 horse racing meets shall be held in Kent County in any 1 year.

(f) The Commission may meet subsequently to January 15 of each year and award dates for horse racing within the limits provided in this section on application submitted to it, provided that the days so awarded in no way conflict with any other provision of this chapter.

(g) No license to conduct horse racing under the provisions of this section shall be granted except to a private stock corporation formed and existing under the laws of this State for the purpose of conducting horse racing and businesses incident thereto in compliance with the following conditions and requirements:

(1) Before a license shall be issued under the provisions of this chapter, the applicant shall file with the Commission, in addition to other requirements of this chapter, the names, addresses and the terms of office of its directors and officers and at such other time or times thereafter as they may be changed, the names and addresses of such directors and officers, a copy of the certificate of incorporation duly certified by the Secretary of the State and a copy of its bylaws. Such applicant shall file with the Commission a copy of any amendment to its certificate of incorporation, duly certified as aforesaid, within 10 days after the effective date of any such amendment;

(2) The board of directors of the applicant shall not be less than 5 in number;

(3) The applicant shall have no other office except in this State;

(4) Every applicant for a license shall file with the Commission, at the time of application for a license, a statement of its resources and liabilities. The Commission shall have access at all times to the books, records and accounts of the licensee;

(5) No license shall be issued unless a majority of the board of directors and officers shall be bona fide residents of this State.

28 Del. C. 1953, § 403; 56 Del. Laws, c. 119; 56 Del. Laws, c. 245; 57 Del. Laws, c. 304; 59 Del. Laws, c. 178, § 1.;

(a) Any person, upon applying to the Commission for a license to conduct a horse racing meet pursuant to this chapter during any calendar year, shall, at the time of making the application, pay to the Secretary of the Department of Finance a fee of $500.

(b) Any person who is granted a license by the Commission to conduct a horse racing meet pursuant to this chapter during any calendar year shall, at the time the license is granted, pay to the Secretary of the Department of Finance an additional fee of $250.

28 Del. C. 1953, § 404; 56 Del. Laws, c. 119; 57 Del. Laws, c. 741, § 32A.;

Upon the award of dates to any applicant, the Commission shall issue a license for the holding of the meet or meets during the dates awarded to the applicant. The license shall be subject to all rights, regulations and conditions from time to time prescribed by the Commission.

28 Del. C. 1953, § 405; 56 Del. Laws, c. 119.;

(a) Any license issued by the Commission shall be subject to suspension or revocation by the Commission for any cause whatsoever which the Commission deems sufficient. If any license is suspended or revoked, the Commission shall state publicly its reasons for so doing and cause an entry of the reasons to be made on the minute book of the Commission, and its action shall be final.

(b) The propriety of such action shall be subject to review upon questions of law only by the Superior Court of Kent County. The action of the Commission shall stand unless and until reversed by the Court.

28 Del. C. 1953, § 406; 56 Del. Laws, c. 119.;

Repealed by 63 Del. Laws, c. 143, § 15, eff. July 13, 1981.;

Not less than 5 days prior to the opening of any meet authorized by the Commission, the Commission, at the expense of the licensee for the meet, shall cause to be made an inspection of the track, grandstand and buildings where the meet is to be held, and, unless such track, grandstand and buildings are found to be safe for animals and persons or are rendered safe prior to the opening of the meet, the license for the meet shall be withdrawn.

28 Del. C. 1953, § 408; 56 Del. Laws, c. 119.;

(a)(1) The Commission shall adopt regulations governing the operation of thoroughbred racing including the regulation of betting in connection therewith and the regulation of the conduct of all participants in any racing meet, to insure the integrity and security of the conduct of meetings held pursuant to this chapter. Such regulations shall include provisions for disciplinary measures for violations thereof including the imposition of fines, suspension or revocation of licenses or permits, and ejection or expulsion from a licensee's premises.

(2)a. The Commission shall have the authority to impose a fine of up to $5,000 for any violation of its regulations.

b. The stewards of a race meeting acting in accordance with such regulations if authorized by the Commission shall have the authority to impose disciplinary measures, including fines, suspension or revocation of licenses or permits, and ejection or exclusion from a licensee's premises.

c. All fines imposed pursuant to this section shall be paid over to the General Fund upon receipt by the Commission.

d. A person fined or otherwise disciplined by the stewards of a race meeting shall have a right of appeal to the Commission and for a hearing before the Commission. Any person fined or otherwise disciplined by the Commission shall have a right of appeal to the Superior Court of the State.

e. The action of the Commission shall stand unless and until reversed by the Court.

(3) The Commission may request and receive assistance from, and rely upon information provided by, the Thoroughbred Racing Protective Bureau, and state or federal law enforcement agencies, in the investigation of any matters within its jurisdiction.

(b) The Commission may make rules governing, restricting or regulating the rate or charge by a licensee for admission or for the performance of any service or the sale of any article on the premises of a licensee.

(c) All proposed extensions, additions or improvements to the buildings, stables or improvements on tracks or property owned or leased by a licensee under this chapter shall be subject to the approval of the Commission.

(d) The Commission may compel the production of any and all books, memoranda or documents showing the receipts and disbursements of any person licensed under the provisions of this chapter to conduct racing meets.

(e) The Commission may at any time require the removal of any employee or official employed by any licensee under this chapter.

(f) The Commission may require that the books, records and financial or other statements of any person licensed under the provisions of this chapter shall be kept in such form or in such manner as the Commission prescribes. The Commission may visit, investigate and place expert accountants and such other persons as it deems necessary, in the offices, tracks or places of business of any such person for the purpose of satisfying itself that the Commission's rules and regulations are strictly complied with. The salaries and expenses of such expert accountants or other persons shall be paid by the person to whom they are assigned.

(g) The Commission may issue, under the hand of any Commissioner and the seal of the Commission, subpoenas for the attendance of witnesses and the production of books, papers and documents before the Commission and may administer oaths or affirmations to the witnesses whenever in the judgment of the Commission it is necessary for the effectual discharge of its duties. If any person refuses to obey any subpoena or to testify or to produce any books, papers or documents, the Commission may apply to the Superior Court of Kent County, and, thereupon, the Court shall issue its subpoena requiring the person to appear and to testify or to produce the books, papers and documents. Whoever fails to obey or refuses to obey a subpoena of the Court shall be guilty of contempt of court and shall be punished accordingly. False swearing on the part of any witness shall be deemed perjury and shall be punished as such.

28 Del. C. 1953, § 409; 56 Del. Laws, c. 119; 63 Del. Laws, c. 143, § 16.;

Every licensee shall file with the Commission not later than 4 months after the close of its fiscal year a statement, duly certified by an independent public accountant, of its receipts from all sources whatsoever during the fiscal year and of all expenses and disbursements, itemized in the manner and form directed by the Commission, showing the net revenue from all sources derived by the licensee during the fiscal year covered by such statement.

28 Del. C. 1953, § 410; 56 Del. Laws, c. 119.;

(a) Every person licensed to hold a horse racing meet within Kent County shall pay to the Secretary of the Department of Finance a tax of 10 cents on each admission on each day of any such meet, excepting admissions of persons performing any duty or work in connection with the holding of the meet and excepting admissions of spouses of jockeys, owners and trainers of horses participating in the meet. The licensee may collect such amount from each ticket holder in addition to the amount charged for the ticket of admission.

(b) Accurate records and books shall at all times be kept and maintained by the licensee showing the number of admissions, employees of the licensee and spouses of jockeys, owners and trainers of horses excepted, for each racing day of each horse racing meet. The Secretary of the Department of Finance, or the Secretary's duly authorized representative, shall at all reasonable times have access to the admission records of any licensee for the purpose of examining and checking the same and ascertaining whether or not the proper amount has been, or is being, paid to the State. The Secretary of the Department of Finance may also, from time to time, require sworn statements of the number or numbers of such admissions and prescribe blanks upon which the reports shall be made.

28 Del. C. 1953, § 411; 56 Del. Laws, c. 119; 57 Del. Laws, c. 741, § 32B; 70 Del. Laws, c. 186, § 1.;