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Senate Bill 2824

Senate Bill sb2824

CODING: Words stricken are deletions; words underlined are additions.
    Florida Senate - 2004                                  SB 2824

    By Senator Garcia





    40-1749-04

  1                      A bill to be entitled

  2         An act relating to pari-mutuel wagering;

  3         amending s. 550.09515, F.S; deleting provisions

  4         that require a thoroughbred horse permit to be

  5         voided and to escheat to the state for failure

  6         to operate performances; deleting provisions

  7         for the reissuance of such escheated permit;

  8         amending s. 550.5251, F.S.; revising provisions

  9         for application and issuance of certain

10         thoroughbred horse permits; providing for

11         penalties for failure to operate full schedule

12         of performances by such permitholders;

13         providing procedures for election not to

14         operate live performances; providing that such

15         election shall not affect the validity of a

16         permit; exempting from penalties thoroughbred

17         permitholders who failed to operate full

18         schedule of performances during specified

19         seasons; providing an effective date.

20  

21  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:

22  

23         Section 1.  Subsections (3), (4), (5), (6), and (7) of

24  section 550.09515, Florida Statutes, are amended to read:

25         550.09515  Thoroughbred horse taxes; abandoned interest

26  in a permit for nonpayment of taxes.--

27         (3)(a)  The permit of a thoroughbred horse permitholder

28  who does not pay tax on handle for live thoroughbred horse

29  performances for a full schedule of live races during any 2

30  consecutive state fiscal years shall be void and shall escheat

31  to and become the property of the state unless such failure to

                                  1

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    Florida Senate - 2004                                  SB 2824
    40-1749-04




 1  operate and pay tax on handle was the direct result of fire,

 2  strike, war, or other disaster or event beyond the ability of

 3  the permitholder to control. Financial hardship to the

 4  permitholder shall not, in and of itself, constitute just

 5  cause for failure to operate and pay tax on handle.

 6         (b)  In order to maximize the tax revenues to the

 7  state, the division shall reissue an escheated thoroughbred

 8  horse permit to a qualified applicant pursuant to the

 9  provisions of this chapter as for the issuance of an initial

10  permit. However, the provisions of this chapter relating to

11  referendum requirements for a pari-mutuel permit shall not

12  apply to the reissuance of an escheated thoroughbred horse

13  permit. As specified in the application and upon approval by

14  the division of an application for the permit, the new

15  permitholder shall be authorized to operate a thoroughbred

16  horse facility anywhere in the same county in which the

17  escheated permit was authorized to be operated,

18  notwithstanding the provisions of s. 550.054(2) relating to

19  mileage limitations.

20         (3)(4)  In the event that a court of competent

21  jurisdiction determines any of the provisions of this section

22  to be unconstitutional, it is the intent of the Legislature

23  that the provisions contained in this section shall be null

24  and void and that the provisions of s. 550.0951 shall apply to

25  all thoroughbred horse permitholders beginning on the date of

26  such judicial determination. To this end, the Legislature

27  declares that it would not have enacted any of the provisions

28  of this section individually and, to that end, expressly finds

29  them not to be severable.

30         (4)(5)  Notwithstanding the provisions of s.

31  550.0951(3)(c), the tax on handle for intertrack wagering on

                                  2

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    Florida Senate - 2004                                  SB 2824
    40-1749-04




 1  rebroadcasts of simulcast horseraces is 2.4 percent of the

 2  handle; provided however, that if the guest track is a

 3  thoroughbred track located more than 35 miles from the host

 4  track, the host track shall pay a tax of .5 percent of the

 5  handle, and additionally the host track shall pay to the guest

 6  track 1.9 percent of the handle to be used by the guest track

 7  solely for purses. The tax shall be deposited into the

 8  Pari-mutuel Wagering Trust Fund.

 9         (5)(6)  A credit equal to the amount of contributions

10  made by a thoroughbred permitholder during the taxable year

11  directly to the Jockeys' Guild or its health and welfare fund

12  to be used to provide health and welfare benefits for active,

13  disabled, and retired Florida jockeys and their dependents

14  pursuant to reasonable rules of eligibility established by the

15  Jockeys' Guild is allowed against taxes on live handle due for

16  a taxable year under this section. A thoroughbred permitholder

17  may not receive a credit greater than an amount equal to 1

18  percent of its paid taxes for the previous taxable year.

19         (6)(7)  If a thoroughbred permitholder fails to operate

20  all performances on its 2001-2002 license, failure to pay tax

21  on handle for a full schedule of live races for those

22  performances in the 2001-2002 fiscal year does not constitute

23  failure to pay taxes on handle for a full schedule of live

24  races in a fiscal year for the purposes of subsection (3).

25  This subsection may not be construed as forgiving a

26  thoroughbred permitholder from paying taxes on performances

27  conducted at its facility pursuant to its 2001-2002 license

28  other than for failure to operate all performances on its

29  2001-2002 license. This subsection expires July 1, 2003.

30         Section 2.  Subsection (2) of section 550.5251, Florida

31  Statutes, is amended to read:

                                  3

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    Florida Senate - 2004                                  SB 2824
    40-1749-04




 1         550.5251  Florida thoroughbred racing; certain permits;

 2  operating days.--

 3         (2)  Each permitholder referred to in subsection (1)

 4  shall annually, during the period commencing December 15 of

 5  each year and ending January 4 of the following year, file in

 6  writing with the division its application to conduct one or

 7  more thoroughbred racing meetings during the thoroughbred

 8  racing season commencing on the following June 1. Each

 9  application shall specify the number and dates of all

10  performances that the permitholder intends to conduct during

11  that thoroughbred racing season. On or before February 15 of

12  each year, the division shall issue a license authorizing each

13  permitholder to conduct performances on the dates specified in

14  its application. Up to March 31 of each year, each

15  permitholder may request and shall be granted changes in its

16  authorized performances and the division shall issue a license

17  on or before April 30 of each year authorizing each

18  permitholder to conduct performances on the dates specified in

19  its application; but thereafter, as a condition precedent to

20  the validity of its license and its right to retain its

21  permit, each permitholder must operate the full number of days

22  authorized on each of the dates set forth in its license or be

23  subject to discipline pursuant to ss. 550.01215(4) and

24  550.0251(10). On or before February 15 of each year, a

25  permitholder may elect not to operate live performances during

26  the ensuing thoroughbred racing season by filing an amendment

27  to its application indicating its irrevocable election not to

28  operate and the division shall not issue a license to such

29  permitholder. An election not to operate shall not affect the

30  continuing validity of the permit of such permitholder. For

31  the 2004-2005 Florida Thoroughbred Racing Season only, an

                                  4

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    Florida Senate - 2004                                  SB 2824
    40-1749-04




 1  election not to operate will be effective if delivered to the

 2  division on or before July 1, 2004. Any thoroughbred

 3  permitholder who failed to operate all performances that it

 4  was authorized to operate under the license or licenses issued

 5  to it by the division for the 2002-2003 or 2003-2004 Florida

 6  Thoroughbred Racing Seasons shall be excused from discipline

 7  by the division for its failure to operate such performances,

 8  and its permit shall be deemed valid and in good standing.

 9         Section 3.  This act shall take effect upon becoming a

10  law.

11  

12            *****************************************

13                          SENATE SUMMARY

14    Deletes provisions that require thoroughbred horse
      permits to escheat to the state for the failure to
15    operate performances and for the reissuance of such
      permits. Provides a deadline for the issuance of
16    licenses. Provides penalties for failing to operate a
      full schedule of performances. Provides procedures to
17    elect not to operate live performances. Exempts certain
      permitholders from penalties for not operating a full
18    schedule of performances in specified years. (See bill
      for details.)
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                                  5

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