TRENTON – Legislation sponsored by Senator Donald Norcross (D-Camden/Gloucester) to authorizing the New Jersey Racing Commission to grant special permits for horse racing on the beach in New Jersey has been approved by the Senate. The move, which is co-sponsored by Senator Jim Whelan (D-Atlantic), is set to promote tourism in Atlantic City and increase interest in the state’s horse racing industry.
“We are bringing a unique event to the shores of Atlantic City, the likes of which our area has not seen before,” said Senator Norcross (D-Camden/Gloucester). “This race and others like it will help to attract tourists to the resort town and contribute to the revitalization of the city.”
The bill enables Atlantic City to host the American Palio Celebration. The Atlantic City American Palio will be a series of horse races conducted on the beach in Atlantic City on Friday, October 11, 2013 and Sunday, October 13, 2013. The event is an Americanization of “Palio,” a race in Siena, Italy, that has been run for the past 700 years. In Siena, the horses race one half mile around the Town Square. The American version will have horses competing in the American classic distance of three quarters of a mile on the Atlantic City beach.
Under the bill, the New Jersey Racing Commission is permitted to grant only one permit of each kind per calendar year; the number of racing days authorized pursuant to a special permit could not exceed two days per permit in a calendar year.
“This will be a great draw for horse-racing enthusiasts across the country,” Senator Norcross went on to say. “An event like this will set Atlantic City and New Jersey apart for being able to provide distinctive entertainment not found anywhere else in the country.”
Today’s vote concurs with the Governor’s conditional veto of the bill. The Assembly approved the concurrence unanimously on Monday.
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