PA Horse Racing and the Fleecinos



The first step involved in getting the massive amount of “legalized” gambling here in PA was to save DYING horse racing.

For 16 years, our diverse, statewide coalition, PAGE, held these vultures at bay. Late Friday afternoon of that “fatal” Fourth of July weekend, I was called and told that, in existing legislation, horse racing was to be sunsetted then! I immediately hung up from that call and called then Sen. Noah Wenger who was the (R) chair of the Ag Committee where horse racing was located and told his aide that he should let it “sunset.” He didn’t.

This is a very good opinion piece from the Philadelphia Inquirer, 4/1/2022 re this major gambling expansion debacle that has helped drain billion$ from the legitimate economy, hurt PA gamblers, their families and helped fill the coffers of the gambling interests.

To those who believe that the blame of embracing this harmful legislation lies only with the Democrats and Governor Ed Rendell (who backed casinos for years,) hang on. With a Republican House snd Senate, they needed Republican votes for this to pass. So, in a “face saving” move (since the Republicans had opposed slots/ casinos for years) a property tax “reduction” was promised. They became partners in PennsylVEGAS.

They have also kept expanding and expanding gambling and NOT because the citizens demanded more but to appease the ever greedy gambling interests.

Recently, Gov. Wolf has been favoring stopping horse racing subsidies.

There is a taxpayer coalition wanting to eliminate property taxes. I wonder how both parties would vote on ending the subsidies and disabling the enabling legislation.  IMO, the casino enabling legislation would no longer be “legal” because there would no longer be  the explicit purpose.

Although people seem to believe that once a law is passed that’s that. Wrong. ANY law ESPECIALLY a harmful one can and should be repealed.

Dianne M. Berlin