H. B. 4487
(By Delegates L. White, Doyle, Manuel and Faircloth)
[Introduced February 10, 2000; referred to the
Committee on the Judiciary then Finance.]
A BILL to amend chapter nineteen of the code of West Virginia, one
thousand nine hundred thirty-one, as amended, by adding
thereto a new article, designated article twenty-four,
relating to enacting the interstate compact on licensure of
participants in live horse racing with pari-mutuel wagering.
Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:
That chapter nineteen of the code of West Virginia, one
thousand nine hundred thirty-one, as amended, be amended by adding
thereto a new article, designated article twenty-four, to read as
ARTICLE 24. INTERSTATE COMPACT ON LICENSURE OF PARTICIPANTS IN
LIVE HORSE RACING WITH PARI-MUTUEL WAGERING.
§19-24-1. Interstate compact on licensure of participants in live
horse racing with pari-mutuel wagering; form of compact.
The interstate compact on licensure of participants in live
horse racing with pari-mutuel wagering is enacted into law and
entered into with all other jurisdictions legally joining in the
compact in the form substantially as follows:
The purposes of this compact are to:
1. Establish uniform requirements among the party states for
the licensing of participants in live horse racing with pari-mutuel
wagering, and ensure that all the participants who are licensed
pursuant to this compact meet a uniform minimum standard of honesty
2. Facilitate the growth of the horse racing industry in each
party state and nationwide by simplifying the process for licensing
participants in live racing, and reduce the duplicative and costly
process of separate licensing by the regulatory agency in each
state that conducts live horse racing with pari-mutuel wagering.
3. Authorize the West Virginia Racing Commission to
participate in this compact.
4. Provide for participation in this compact by officials of
the party states, and permit those officials, through the compact committee established by this compact, to enter into contracts with
governmental agencies and nongovernmental persons to carry out the
purposes of this compact.
5. Establish the compact committee created by this compact as
an interstate governmental entity duly authorized to request and
receive criminal history record information from the Federal Bureau
of Investigation and other state and local law-enforcement
"Compact committee" means the organization of officials from
the party states that is authorized and empowered by this compact
to carry out the purposes of this compact.
"Official" means the appointed, elected, designated or
otherwise duly selected member of a racing commission or the
equivalent of a racing commission in a party state who represents
that party state as a member of the compact committee.
"Participants in live racing" means participants in live horse
racing with pari-mutuel wagering in the party states.
"Party state" means each state that has enacted this compact.
"State" means each of the several states of the United States,
the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico and each
territory or possession of the United States.
ENTRY INTO FORCE, ELIGIBLE PARTIES AND WITHDRAWAL.
§3. Entry into force.
This compact shall come into force when enacted by any four
states. Thereafter, this compact shall become effective as to any
other state upon: (i) That state's enactment of this compact; and
(ii) the affirmative vote of a majority of the officials on the
compact committee as provided in section eight.
§4. States eligible to join compact.
Any state that has adopted or authorized horse racing with
pari-mutuel wagering is eligible to become party to this compact.
§5. Withdrawal from compact and impact thereof on force and effect
Any party state may withdraw from this compact by enacting a
statute repealing this compact, but the withdrawal does not become
effective until the head of the executive branch of the withdrawing
state has given notice in writing of the withdrawal to the head of
the executive branch of all other party states. If as a result of
withdrawals participation in this compact decreases to less than
three party states, this compact is no longer in force and effect
unless and until there are at least three or more party states
again participating in this compact.
§6. Compact committee established.
There is hereby created an interstate governmental entity to
be known as the "compact committee," which shall be comprised of
one official from the racing commission or its equivalent in each
party state who shall be appointed, serve and is subject to removal
in accordance with the laws of the party state he or she
represents. Pursuant to the laws of his or her party state, each
official shall have the assistance of his or her state's racing
commission or the equivalent of a racing commission in considering
issues related to licensing of participants in live racing and in
fulfilling his or her responsibilities as the representative from
his or her state to the compact committee. If an official is unable
to perform any duty in connection with the powers and duties of the
compact committee, the racing commission or equivalent from his or
her state shall designate another of its members as an alternate
who shall serve in his or her place and represent the party state
as its official on the compact committee until that racing
commission or equivalent determines that the original
representative official is able once again to perform his or her
duties as that party state's representative official on the compact
committee. The designation of an alternate shall be communicated by
the affected state's racing commission or equivalent to the compact
committee as the committee's bylaws may provide.
§7. Powers and duties of compact committee.
In order to carry out the purposes of this compact, the
compact committee is hereby granted the power and duty to:
1. Determine which categories of participants in live racing,
including, but not limited to, owners, trainers, jockeys, grooms,
mutuel clerks, racing officials, veterinarians and farriers, should
be licensed by the committee, and establish the requirements for
the initial licensure of applicants in each such category, the term
of the license for each category, and the requirements for renewal
of licenses in each category: Provided, That with regard to
requests for criminal history record information on each applicant
for a license, and with regard to the effect of a criminal record
on the issuance or renewal of a license, the compact committee
shall determine for each category of participants in live racing
which licensure requirements for that category are, in its
judgment, the most restrictive licensure requirements of any party
state for that category and shall adopt licensure requirements for
that category that are, in its judgment, comparable to those most
2. Investigate applicants for a license from the compact
committee and, as permitted by federal and state law, gather
information on the applicants, including criminal history record
information from the Federal Bureau of Investigation and relevant
state and local law-enforcement agencies, and, where appropriate, from the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and law-enforcement agencies
of other countries, necessary to determine whether a license should
be issued under the licensure requirements established by the
committee as provided in paragraph one above. Only officials on,
and employees of, the compact committee may receive and review the
criminal history record information, and those officials and
employees may use that information only for the purposes of this
compact. No such official or employee may disclose or disseminate
the information to any person or entity other than another official
on or employee of the compact committee. The fingerprints of each
applicant for a license from the compact committee shall be taken
by the compact committee, its employees or its designee and,
pursuant to Public Law 92-544 or Public Law 100-413, shall be
forwarded to a state identification bureau, or to the Association
of Racing Commissioners, International, an association of state
officials regulating pari-mutuel wagering designated by the
Attorney General of the United States, for submission to the
Federal Bureau of Investigation for a criminal history record
check. The fingerprints may be submitted on a fingerprint card or
by electronic or other means authorized by the Federal Bureau of
Investigation or other receiving law-enforcement agency.
3. Issue licenses to, and renew the licenses of, participants
in live racing listed in paragraph one of this section who are
found by the committee to have met the licensure and renewal requirements established by the committee. The compact committee
does not have the power or authority to deny a license. If it
determines that an applicant will not be eligible for the issuance
or renewal of a compact committee license, the compact committee
shall notify the applicant that it will not be able to process his
or her application further. The notification does not constitute
and shall not be considered to be the denial of a license. Any such
applicant has the right to present additional evidence to, and to
be heard by, the compact committee, but the final decision on
issuance or renewal of the license shall be made by the compact
committee using the requirements established pursuant to paragraph
one of this section.
4. Enter into contracts or agreements with governmental
agencies and with nongovernmental persons to provide personal
services for its activities and other services as may be necessary
to effectuate the purposes of this compact.
5. Create, appoint and abolish those offices, employments and
positions, including an executive director, as it considers
necessary for the purposes of this compact, prescribe their powers,
duties and qualifications, hire persons to fill those offices,
employments and positions, and provide for the removal, term,
tenure, compensation, fringe benefits, retirement benefits and
other conditions of employment of its officers, employees and other
6. Borrow, accept or contract for the services of personnel
from any state, the United States, any other governmental agency or
from any person, firm, association, corporation or other entity.
7. Acquire, hold and dispose of real and personal property by
gift, purchase, lease, license or in other similar manner, in
furtherance of the purposes of this compact.
8. Charge a fee to each applicant for an initial license or
renewal of a license.
9. Receive other funds through gifts, grants and
§8. Voting requirements.
A. Each official shall be entitled to one vote on the compact
B. All action taken by the compact committee with regard to
the addition of party states as provided in section three, the
licensure of participants in live racing, and the receipt and
disbursement of funds requires a majority vote of the total number
of officials, or their alternates, on the committee. All other
action by the compact committee requires a majority vote of those
officials, or their alternates, present and voting.
C. No action of the compact committee may be taken unless a
quorum is present. A majority of the officials, or their
alternates, on the compact committee constitutes a quorum.
§9. Administration and management.
A. The compact committee shall elect annually from among its
members a chairman, a vice-chairman and a secretary/treasurer.
B. The compact committee shall adopt bylaws for the conduct of
its business by a two-thirds vote of the total number of officials,
or their alternates, on the committee at that time and shall have
the power by the same vote to amend and rescind these bylaws. The
committee shall publish its bylaws in convenient form and shall
file a copy of the bylaws and a copy of any amendments to the
bylaws with the secretary of state or equivalent agency of each of
the party states.
C. The compact committee may delegate the day-to-day
management and administration of its duties and responsibilities to
an executive director and his or her support staff.
D. Employees of the compact committee shall be considered
§10. Immunity from liability for performance of official
responsibilities and duties.
No official of a party state or employee of the compact
committee may be held personally liable for any good faith act or
omission that occurs during the performance and within the scope of
his or her responsibilities and duties under this compact.
RIGHTS AND RESPONSIBILITIES OF EACH PARTY STATE.
§11. Rights and responsibilities of each party state.
A. By enacting this compact, each party state:
1. Agrees: (i) To accept the decisions of the compact
committee regarding the issuance of compact committee licenses to
participants in live racing pursuant to the committee's licensure
requirements; and (ii) to reimburse or otherwise pay the expenses
of its official representative on the compact committee or his or
2. Agrees not to treat a notification to an applicant by the
compact committee under paragraph three of section seven that the
compact committee will not be able to process his or her
application further as the denial of a license, or to penalize such
an applicant in any other way based solely on such a decision by
the compact committee.
3. Reserves the right: (i) To charge a fee for the use of a
compact committee license in that state; (ii) to apply its own
standards in determining whether, on the facts of a particular
case, a compact committee license should be suspended or revoked;
(iii) to apply its own standards in determining licensure
eligibility, under the laws of that party state, for categories of
participants in live racing that the compact committee determines
not to license and for individual participants in live racing who
do not meet the licensure requirements of the compact committee;
and (iv) to establish its own licensure standards for the licensure of nonracing employees at horse racetracks and employees at
separate satellite wagering facilities. Any party state that
suspends or revokes a compact committee license shall, through its
racing commission or the equivalent thereof or otherwise, promptly
notify the compact committee of that suspension or revocation.
B. No party state may be held liable for the debts or other
financial obligations incurred by the compact committee.
CONSTRUCTION AND SEVERABILITY.
§12. Construction and severability.
This compact shall be liberally construed so as to effectuate
its purposes. The provisions of this compact shall be severable,
and, if any phrase, clause, sentence or provision of this compact
is declared to be contrary to the Constitution of the United States
or of any party state, or the applicability of this compact to any
government, agency, person or circumstance is held invalid, the
validity of the remainder of this compact and the applicability
thereof to any government, agency, person or circumstance shall not
be affected thereby. If all or some portion of this compact is held
to be contrary to the constitution of any party state, the compact
shall remain in full force and effect as to the remaining party
states and in full force and effect as to the state affected as to
all severable matters.
§19-24-2. Compact Committee members.
The governor shall appoint one official to represent West
Virginia on the compact committee for a term of four years. No
official may serve more than three consecutive terms. A vacancy
shall be filled by the governor for the unexpired term.
§19-24-3. Cooperation of departments, agencies and officers.
All departments, agencies and officers of the state and its
political subdivisions are authorized to cooperate with the compact
committee in furtherance of any of its activities pursuant to the
§19-24-4. Racing commission powers preserved.
Nothing in this article diminishes or limits the powers and
responsibilities of the racing commission established article
twenty-three of this chapter, or invalidates any action of the
racing commission previously taken, including without limitation
any rule promulgated by the commission.
This article is new; therefore, strike-throughs and
underscoring have been omitted.