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Lawmakers want control of Racing Commission

By Dave Thompson

Bismarck, ND – The North Dakota Racing Commission may have trouble giving additional money to a proposed race track in Fargo.

The North Dakota House has approved a new restriction on the commission's spending ability. The bill says any spending of more than $100,000 has to be approved by the Legislative Council's Budget Section.

House Minority Leader Merle Boucher (D-Rollette) says smaller race tracks have been shut out of getting money -- and they've been running horse races for years.

"Unfortunately, some folks made an arbitrary decision to grant a monopoly to a facility that is not yet built, and hasn't run a race," Boucher told the House. "Let's not act prematurely."

The vote was 63-31. And the bill will now be considered in the Senate.