Columbus, OH --- Members of the Ohio State Racing Commission once again heard presentations by Penn National Gaming officials related to the relocations of Raceway Park to Dayton and Beulah Park to Austintown during a four-hour meeting on Wednesday (March 20).
Representatives of River Downs and Miami Valley Gaming and Racing also delivered plans or updates related to future construction of racing facilities to the commission.
Chairman Robert K. Schmitz said the commission would meet next on Wednesday (March 27).
“I still have concerns about the number of seats,” he said after the Penn National Gaming presentation. “If you could take a look at that, I would appreciate it.”
Currently, both racetracks are configured to seat just over 1,400 customers. Each racetrack will probably operate almost exclusively between October and April. The Austintown facility would have 650 seats exposed to the elements. Over 850 seats at the Dayton racetrack are in locations not enclosed and heated. Other seating does not afford customers a view of the races.
Commissioners also heard a presentation by River Downs General Manager Kevin Kaufman and Bhavna Mistry, a senior vice president. This track will have seating for approximately 1,450. River Downs conducts live racing during the summer months and has never had an enclosed grandstand.
Finally, representatives of Miami Valley Gaming and Racing appeared at the request of the commission to provide additional information about the new harness racetrack to be constructed in Warren County.
“I’m very disappointed,” the chairman said. “I can’t over emphasize the need for more seating.”
The racing commission, as well as the Ohio Lottery Commission, must approve site plans for each new racino. Site plans will be a part of the agenda at the meeting on March 27. The meeting begins at 10 a.m.