(The Center Square) — The New Jersey Assembly’s Tourism, Gaming and Arts Committee has proposed legislation to enforce the New Jersey Racing Commission’s internal controls, including prompt reporting of income.
A-327 would require an audit at the end of each fiscal year to ensure proper disclosure of financial and other regulated information.
Supporters of the legislation point to a state auditor’s report that found the commission improperly processed $7.5 million in transactions between 2017 and 2019. reported equine deaths, lawmakers say, pointing to the report.
“This audit has highlighted the need for reform within the racing commission,” Assemblyman Ron Dancer, R-Ocean, said in a statement. “Since its internal control procedures failed, it is time to put in place legislative control to ensure the integrity of the reports.”
The bill requires that all fines be collected and those who refuse to pay the fines are suspended. Additionally, horse deaths and earnings must be reported quickly, while employee access to sensitive information is limited to job duties and classification.
“Significantly, $100 million in taxpayer money is sent by law to the Racing Commission to supplement horse racing purses over a five-year period,” Dancer said. “Because this involves money not only from fans and patrons, but also from taxpayers, it is even more important that there are proper tax controls on these funds.”
The commission will pay for the annual audits and they cannot pass on any costs to the riders. The audits will be sent to the state attorney general and state legislators by May 15.