Section 11-65-28

Pari-mutuel wagering.

(a) Pari-mutuel wagering conducted by an operator shall be conducted in accordance with the provisions of this section. An operator shall provide a place or places at the racing facility operated by it at which such operator shall conduct a pari-mutuel system of wagering by its patrons on the results of horse races or greyhound races, as the case may be, held at such racing facility. Such place or places shall be provided with the electronic or mechanical equipment necessary to issue pari-mutuel tickets, as well as the electronic or mechanical equipment necessary to record the wagering, compute the odds, and determine the awards to winning bettors, all in an accurate and speedy manner. All such equipment shall be approved by the commission licensing such operator before being used, but such commission shall not require the installation of any particular make of such equipment.

(b) Subject to the provisions of subsection (c), a horse racing operator shall distribute to the winners of each pari-mutuel pool originated for horse races the total amount wagered with respect to that pool, less the following deductions, as in the case may be applicable, to be retained by such operator as the "takeout" for its own use and purposes, including the payment of the wagering fees imposed by this chapter:

(1) In the case of any pari-mutuel pool where the bettor is required to select one horse, there shall be deducted an amount equal to 17 percent of the total amount wagered with respect to that pool plus the breakage applicable to the winning bets for that pool;

(2) In the case of any pari-mutuel pool where the bettor is required to select two horses, there shall be deducted an amount equal to 21 percent of the total amount wagered with respect to that pool plus the breakage applicable to the winning bets for that pool; and

(3) In the case of any pari-mutuel pool where the bettor is required to select three or more horses, there shall be deducted an amount equal to 23 percent of the total amount wagered with respect to that pool plus the breakage applicable to the winning bets for that pool.

In addition to the amounts permitted by the preceding provisions of this subsection to be deducted from all pari-mutuel pools originated for horse races and retained by the horse racing operator conducting such races, such operator shall be permitted to retain all moneys represented by unclaimed, uncashed, or abandoned pari-mutuel tickets; provided, however, that no pari-mutuel ticket shall be deemed to be unclaimed, uncashed, or abandoned unless it shall not be presented for payment within six months from the date of the running of the race to which such pari-mutuel ticket pertains.

(c) During any period in which a horse racing operator shall be required to pay the state horse wagering fee, such operator shall have the right to increase the "take out" deduction permitted by subsection (b) by any amount up to one percent of the total amount wagered with respect to any pari-mutuel pool originated for horse races, any provisions of this chapter, or any other law to the contrary notwithstanding. It is hereby expressly declared that this right is conferred upon each horse racing operator licensed by a commission for the purpose of enabling such operator to generate all or part of the money necessary to pay the state horse wagering fee, and any increase in the amount deducted by an operator from any pari-mutuel pools pursuant to the exercise of such right shall not be made the basis of any increase in the state horse wagering fee, the commission horse wagering fee, or any other taxes, fees, or commissions payable by such operator. No increase in the amount deducted from any pari-mutuel pool shall be permitted pursuant to this subsection until such time as a horse racing operator shall become liable for the state horse wagering fee, but thereafter, and for so long as such operator shall remain liable for the state horse wagering fee, the right conferred by this subsection to increase the amount deducted may be exercised at any time and from time to time (including the right to institute an increase and thereafter discontinue and resume it any number of times), may be exercised with respect to all pari-mutuel pools originated for horse races or with respect to some and not to others, and may be exercised with respect to any qualifying pari-mutuel pool in any degree of increase, not exceeding in any case more than one percent of the total amount wagered with respect to that pool, all as such operator shall determine in the exercise of its sole discretion without direction or influence from the commission licensing such operator, any state racing commission or any other governmental body.

(d) A greyhound racing operator shall distribute to the winners of each pari-mutuel pool originated for greyhound races the total amount wagered with respect to that pool, less the following deductions, as in the case may be applicable, to be retained by such operator as the "takeout" for its own use and purposes, including the payment of the state dog racing privilege tax and the commission greyhound wagering fee:

(1) In the case of any pari-mutuel pool where the bettor is required to select one greyhound, there shall be deducted an amount equal to 17 percent of the total amount wagered with respect to that pool plus the breakage applicable to the winning bets for that pool;

(2) In the case of any pari-mutuel pool where the bettor is required to select two greyhounds, there shall be deducted an amount equal to 21 percent of the total amount wagered with respect to that pool plus the breakage applicable to the winning bets for that pool; and

(3) In the case of any pari-mutuel pool where the bettor is required to select three or more greyhounds, there shall be deducted an amount equal to 23 percent of the total amount wagered with respect to that pool plus the breakage applicable to the winning bets for that pool.

In addition to the amounts permitted by the preceding provisions of this subsection to be deducted from all pari-mutuel pools originated for greyhound races and retained by the greyhound racing operator conducting such races, such operator shall be permitted to retain all moneys represented by unclaimed, uncashed, or abandoned pari-mutuel tickets; provided, however, that no pari-mutuel ticket shall be deemed to be unclaimed, uncashed, or abandoned unless it shall not be presented for payment within six months from the date of the running of the race to which such pari-mutuel ticket pertains. The provisions of Section 40-26A-2(c) relating to the state dog racing privilege tax to the contrary notwithstanding, a greyhound racing operator shall not be entitled to increase to 19 percent the "takeout" deduction specified in subdivision (d)(1) for pari-mutuel pools where the bettor is required to select one greyhound. Nothing contained in Section 40-26A-2(c) shall be construed to require the "takeout" deduction specified in subdivision (d)(2) to be reduced to 19 percent or the "takeout" deduction specified in subdivision (d)(3) to be reduced to 21 percent.

(e) A commission shall adopt and maintain rules and regulations for each kind of pari-mutuel pool that may be originated by a horse racing operator or a greyhound racing operator, as the case may be, and such rules and regulations shall be published by such commission in book or pamphlet form for general distribution to all interested persons. Under the pari-mutuel system of wagering hereby authorized, an operator shall be permitted to provide separate pools for bets to win, place, and show, as well as separate pools for more complex wagers involving such combinations of races and such combinations of the outcomes of races as shall be approved by the commission licensing such operator. Each pool (less the amount that the operator is permitted to retain as the "takeout" pursuant to the provisions of this section) shall be distributed separately to the winners thereof in accordance with the rules and regulations of the governing commission for that kind of pari-mutuel pool. If there is no ticket bet on the winning horse or greyhound or combination of horses or greyhounds, as the case may be, for any pari-mutuel pool, the portion of the pool which would have been distributed to any winners thereof shall be distributed to the holders of the tickets for such pool in accordance with the rules and regulations of the governing commission for that kind of pari-mutuel pool.

(Acts 1984, No. 84-131, p. 159, §28; Acts 1984, 2nd Ex. Sess., No. 85-45, §1; Acts 1991, No. 91-187, p. 246, §23.)