Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Saratoga Spa State Park first in the state to create a master plan.

Future of state park to be plotted
Capital projects will be identifi ed
BY LEE COLEMAN Gazette Reporter The Saratoga Spa State Park has been chosen to be the first of the state’s 178 parks to create a new comprehensive master plan. “Where should the park be in five, 10, 20 years out?” asked Robert Kuhn, assistant regional director of the Saratoga-Capital District Region of the state park system. “Do we want camping here?” Kuhn said, giving an example of the kind of thing the master plan will answer. Kuhn said the Spa State Park staff is thrilled to be the first in the state to do a new master plan. “It’s wonderful for us, but a huge challenge,” Kuhn said at a recent meeting of the Saratoga-Capital District Region park commission. The master plan — including detailed environmental and economic studies — will identify future capital investments at the 2,800-acre park needed to rehabilitate and upgrade the park’s many recreational and cultural venues. Many of the Saratoga Spa State Park’s historic buildings were constructed during the Great Depression. Most of them opened in 1935 and are in need of regular repair and renovation. “The master plan is an important document,” said Eileen Larrabee, a spokeswoman for the state Offi ce of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation. She said on Monday a comprehensive master plan requires comments and suggestions from the local community on the future development of the park. “Over the past decade very few master plans have been done,” Larrabee said. This is why state parks Commissioner Carol Ash is asking that 50 parks in the state complete a new master plan within the next fi ve years. “Spa State Park is slated to be the first,” Larrabee said. The last master plan for the Spa State Park was done more than a decade ago, she said. Kuhn said Spa State Park is lucky to have Michael Greenslade as its new director. The master plan will be done “in-house” by park staff. Most recently, Greenslade was director of the Moreau Lake State Park. He helped that park finalize a master plan after it acquired 3,200 acres in Saratoga and Warren counties from the Open Space Institute and Niagara Mohawk Power Corp. Greenslade will be in charge of coordinating the new Spa State Park master plan process. Larrabee said the Moreau Lake State Park master plan was one of the few completed in New York state in recent years. “The process requires that we open it up to the public, to the local municipality,” Kuhn said about the master plan. Heather Mabee, president of the Saratoga-Capital District Region’s park commission, said the master plan “will be a living document.” “It will be something anybody can read, it will be user-friendly,” Mabee said. Mabee said the Spa State Park’s master plan should be completed as early as the end of 2008. “It will be a lot of work,” she said at a recent commission meeting. “We will need all the help we can get,” Greenslade replied. Ash said this fall that a major problem facing the state park system is the lack of adequate funding in recent state budgets. “Over the past 15 years, the size of our system expanded from 184 sites — including historic sites and state parks — in 1992 to 213 today, an increase of 29 new facilities,” Ash said in testimony before a fi scal year 2008-09 parks capital funding hearing in Albany. “But over this same period, our capital budget was cut,” she said. “Our actual expenditures in 1992 were $60 million. This year, our capital expenditures from all sources will be $40 million.” “Adjusted for inflation, our capital budget today buys 50 percent less than it did in 1992,” she testifi ed. Ash said there is a backlog of $650 million in “urgent capital needs” in parks across the state. The Saratoga-Capital District Region, which includes the Spa State Park along with nine other state parks and seven historic sites, needs $43 million for “urgent” capital projects, Kuhn said. “We won’t get it in one year,” Kuhn said. He said the money for the region will be phased in during coming budget years. “Everything looks positive to get the funding, starting in next year’s budget,” Kuhn said.
See AOL's top rated recipes and easy ways to stay in shape

Saturday, December 22, 2007

A lovely poem for this or any season

Stopping By Woods On A Snowy Evening

Whose woods these are I think I know.
His house is in the village though;
He will not see me stopping here
To watch his woods fill up with snow.
My little horse must think it queer
To stop without a farmhouse near
Between the woods and frozen lake
The darkest evening of the year.
He gives his harness bells a shake
To ask if there is some mistake.
The only other sound's the sweep
Of easy wind and downy flake.
The woods are lovely, dark and deep.
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep,
And miles to go before I sleep.

Robert Frost, Stopping by Woods on a Snowy EveningUS poet (1874 - 1963)

"The woods are snowy, dark and deep and we have promises to keep." Robert Frost

downtown Saratoga is magic in every season

Joy to all even on the first day of winter, 12/22/07

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

water=kaching kaching!

Let the city have lake water
Published: Friday, December 14, 2007
Larger Text Smaller Text Print Email RSS
Now the members of the Saratoga Lake Association, having gotten pummeled in court, are going to drag out for another round their selfish quest to keep anyone from sharing their water.Saratoga Lake is big enough and clean enough to take care of the water needs of Saratoga Springs with ease. Expert studies have shown that.But heaven forbid, the lakesiders are saying, that anyone sip from "their" water.It's better, they say, for workers to rip a ditch down the length of the county, right through Moreau State Park, and toss a pipe in it.
aCampaigns = new Array();
aCampaigns[836] = 100;
aAds = new Array();
nAdsysTime = new Date().getTime()/1000;
document.usePlayer = 1;
if ((nAdsysTime >= 1181710800) && (nAdsysTime = 1174280400) && (nAdsysTime = 1189486800) && (nAdsysTime = 1190264400) && (nAdsysTime = 1191301200) && (nAdsysTime = 1191992400) && (nAdsysTime = 1192078800) && (nAdsysTime = 1193029200) && (nAdsysTime = 1195624800) && (nAdsysTime = 1196834400) && (nAdsysTime

The lakesiders like to act as if the county pipe plan, which would draw water out of the Hudson River, is a fait accompli.Work has started on the pipeline, but with all the problems besetting the project -- a shortage of paying customers being, perhaps, the biggest -- the pipe plan may yet prove to be a pipe dream.Even if the county manages to get its pipe into the ground, Saratoga Springs doesn't have to tap into it.The city is lucky enough to have an ample supply of water just waiting to be tapped.Other communities draw water out of big lakes like Saratoga Lake.And other communities allow recreation on the lakes from which they draw water.
You don't have to look far for examples. The village of Lake Placid has drawn all its water from Lake Placid for more than a century.Lake Placid holds a volume of water similar to Saratoga Lake's and, although Lake Placid is smaller than Saratoga Springs, it attracts tourists by the hundreds of thousands, not just in summer but in every season.Lake Placid has never had a problem with its water supply.And recreation on Lake Placid, where hundreds of motorboats cruise in the summertime, has never been restricted.And the Saratoga Lake homeowners have never drawn a convincing distinction between Saratoga Lake and Lake Placid.
If the environment were their concern, they would have rallied against cutting a trench many miles long through the county's forests and fields.If water quality were their concern, they'd have welcomed a city tap, because drinking water must be monitored and kept to a high standard.Their concern is keeping the lake to themselves, and it always has been.Unfortunately, their selfishness has found powerful allies among the county's Republican supervisors, who themselves have a shameful record when it comes to public works.In the late 1990s, the county's Republican supervisors rammed through a plan to build a $10 million landfill in Northumberland that local farmers and many other people told them was unnecessary. That landfill has never been used.
Let me repeat that: $10 million.Never been used.The water pipe could turn into a similar boondoggle. But even if water eventually flows through this pipe, it's better for the city to have its own.Will Doolittle is projects editor of The Post-Star. He may be reached at will@poststar.com.
» Subscribe to The Post-Star and save! Click here to find out how » Subscribe to email and cell phone alerts and breaking news
" target=_blank>Digg " target=_blank>Del.icio.us Print Email

Urgent needs for NYS Parks, 12/17/07

News from New York State Office of Parks & Recreation
For more information contact: Eileen Larrabee or Cathy Jimenez, 518-486-1868
State Council of Parks Issues Report Highlighting Needs and Accomplishments of State Parks and Historic Sites
Report, First in 35 years, Highlights Capital Backlog Throughout New York State
ALBANY, NY (12/17/2007; 1419)(readMedia)-- The New York State Council of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation today released its 2007 Annual Report to Governor Eliot Spitzer highlighting achievements over the past year and setting forth recommendations for improving the (1) infrastructure and management and (2) stewardship of New York’s 213 State Parks and Historic Sites. The report details the growing backlog of urgent capital needs at state parks and historic sites and identifies priorities of the State Council for 2008.
“The New York State Parks system is an irreplaceable public asset that provides unparalleled recreation opportunities, enhances the health of citizens, supports the state’s economic vitality and quality of life, and harbors irreplaceable ecosystems and natural resources. The Annual Report outlines a major effort to return New York’s parks to preeminence as the best state parks system in the nation and calls for a renewed investment in our public facilities throughout the state,” said State Council Chair Dr. Lucy Waletzky.
“I want to thank the members of the State Council of Parks for their commitment to preserving and protecting the valuable natural resources within our parks and historic sites and for their efforts in advancing the annual report. This document is an important step in focusing attention on the many challenges facing our state parks and historic sites after years of underinvestment and offers valuable insight and suggestions to develop and expand successful stewardship and land initiatives across New York,” said State Parks Commissioner Carol Ash.
Ash noted that despite statutory requirements for the issuance of an annual report, this document is the first formal submission in 35 years provided to the Governor.
An ongoing comprehensive assessment of State Parks’ capital investment needs has identified critical capital projects with a total cost exceeding $650 million. The following are State Parks’ capital needs broken down into four categories:
Remediation of existing facilities (65 percent of capital need). Projects include maintenance and rehabilitation of existing infrastructure in the parks and historic sites.
Health and safety (15 percent of capital need). Projects include upgrades to electrical systems and drinking water supply systems, repairs to dams and bridges flagged as potential hazards, and attention to inactive landfills that were not properly closed.
New facilities development (15 percent of capital need). Projects include capital investments are needed to develop new facilities that have been acquired over the past decade in order to create contact stations, parking areas, restrooms, picnic grounds and swimming areas.
Natural resources (5 percent of capital need). State Parks’ natural resources are threatened by pollution, invasive species, soil erosion and global warming. Specific projects to restore habitats and ecosystems within State Parks facilities have been identified to ensure the protection of natural resources.
Despite the unmet capital funding needs, State Parks achieved a number of accomplishments and successes over the past year including opening of new parks and facilities, restoration of several historic buildings, construction of vacation rentals; major rehabilitation projects; electrical upgrades and playground improvements; and increased interpretive programming and educational opportunities.
In 2008, the State Council will focus on significantly increasing State Parks’ capital budget to address the rehabilitation and reconstruction of aging infrastructure; cultivating and encouraging support for state parks and historic sites with elected officials, community leaders, and parks and historic preservation organizations; working to strengthen friends groups and increasing volunteer efforts; and participating in private fundraising efforts to advance high priority capital projects.
The Annual Report was adopted by members of the Council of Parks at an October 16, 2007, meeting. The State Council consists of the Chairs of the eleven regional park commissions; Carol Ash, Commissioner of State Parks; Pete Grannis, Commissioner of the Department of Environmental Conservation, and Robert MacKay, Chair of the State Board of Historic Preservation. The function of the council is to advise, make recommendations and report on the progress of all matters affecting state parks, recreation and historic preservation.
In January 2007, Governor Spitzer appointed Dr. Lucy R. Waletzky to serve as chair of the State Council of Parks. The following individuals serve as chair for each of the New York State Parks regions: Dalton Burgett (Allegany); Edward Audi (Central); Linda Jackson (Finger Lakes); Peter Humphrey (Genesee); Herbert Balin (Long Island); Edward Cox (New York City); Jean Knox (Niagara); Samuel Pryor (Palisades); Heather Mabee (Saratoga-Capital District); Lucy Waletzky (Taconic); and Harold Johnson, II (Thousand Islands).
For more information on New York State parks and historic sites, please call 518-474-0456 or visit www.nysparks.com. For a copy of the New York State Council of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation 2007 Annual Report, visit www.nysparks.state.ny.us/council/docs/Annual_Report.pdf.

Friday, December 07, 2007

Gideon Putnam Hotel poised for Delaware North transition

Firm putting $6.5M into hotel
Company ready to take over Gideon Putnam, baths
BY LEE COLEMAN Gazette Reporter The Buffalo-based company preparing to take over operation of the Gideon Putnam Hotel will spend $6.5 million over the next five years to upgrade the hotel and related facilities, a state parks official said Thursday. Delaware North Companies, which currently runs Saratoga Gaming and Raceway in Saratoga Springs, will start operating the historic Gideon Putnam Hotel and Conference Center and Roosevelt Baths in the Saratoga Spa State Park on Dec. 31. Final contract negotiations between the state Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation and Delaware North have been completed, said Robert Kuhn, assistant regional director of the state parks’ Saratoga-Capital District Region. “The transition is moving quickly and nicely,” Kuhn said at a park commission meeting on Thursday. A transition team from Delaware North has rented offices in the Spa State Park’s administration building and is busy interviewing people, Kuhn said. Xanterra Parks & Resorts Inc. has operated the hotel and baths for the past 20 years but its bid for another 20 years was rejected by the state, which awarded Delaware North the 20-year franchise. The company has agreed to spend more than $19 million over the next 20 years, upgrading the 1935-era hotel and nearby mineral baths and spa, Kuhn said. “They will revitalize and improve the hotel,” Kuhn said. “Delaware North has so many great ideas.” The 132 guest rooms in the hotel will be renovated, along with the hotel’s restaurant and bar and kitchen, he said. Delaware North has also agreed to spend $450,000 renovating and improving the Roosevelt Bathhouse, including using all mineral water in the soothing baths rather than the current mixture of mineral water and hot tap water. For more than 20 years, the bathhouses in the Spa State Park have mixed cold mineral water with hot city tap water to reach a desired bathing temperature. Before the mid-1980s, the mineral water was heated and used undiluted in the therapeutic baths. Several years ago Xanterra completely renovated the Roosevelt Baths and added spa amenities. Kuhn said Delaware North will remodel the baths as well as add new features, including a tea and lunch service. “The contract will be in place within the next two weeks,” Kuhn said. “Both state parks and Delaware North feel the transition is on track and going well.” He said the contract is being reviewed by the state Comptroller’s Office, as required by state regulations. “There are no hitches,” he said. Heather Mabee, chairwoman of the park commission, said she was pleased that the operation of the Gideon was awarded to a company headquartered in New York state. Xanterra, which operates hotels and resorts in some national parks, is located out of state. When state parks Commissioner Carol Ash announced that Delaware North had won the bidding war to operate the Gideon Putnam, she noted the company has operated other state parks, resorts and concessions, including Jones Beach, Robert Moses state park and the Niagara Falls state park.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Saratoga Racetrack needs some holiday cheer to save it.

The New York Racing Association (NYRA) franchise expires on December 31, leaving the future of racing in this state teetering on several issues. Since 1955 NYRA has held the franchise governing race track operations at New York’s three major Thoroughbred racetracks. It was then that the State Racing Commission authorized them to acquire the assets from four separate racing organizations operating under the auspices of The Greater New York Association, Inc., who then operated Belmont, Jamaica, Saratoga and Aqueduct racetracks. NYRA paid $20 million for the properties. In 1959 NYRA closed Jamaica and sold that property.
There have been several extensions of the franchise since ’55; the latest, a 7-year extension installed during the Pataki administration. It is that legislation which is expiring on December 31.
New York legislators do not appear to have mapped out a future for racing or defined its marriage with gaming. No one seems informed of what is in the works and without a contract New York racing will shut down. This would have devastating effects to the racing industry and all of its ancillary businesses. This is an emergency situation.
Today, with Video Lottery Terminals shining brightly on the horizon, other management entities are champing at the bit to displace a financially troubled NYRA and pull milk from this new breed. The new players profess they will steward racing, but you have to wonder if they truly recognize the budget left for racing, after the pie is sliced.
Every informed person knows there are some blemishes on the underbelly of racing. It is impossible to believe that multi-billions of dollars could pass through any gambling environment without occasional circumstances enabling some of it to stick in wrong places.
It would be an act of futility to hold today’s NYRA responsible for things that occurred through earlier management regimes. It is the right time to correct the problems which have paved the road to NYRA’s bankrupt condition. A revamping of the distribution of monies derived from gambling is in order. NYRA’s operating expenses and administrative costs should be closely scrutinized and necessary adjustments made. Precious time is slipping away.
On November 28th, The U.S. Bankruptcy Court approved NYRA’s disclosure statement, detailing its bankruptcy reorganization plan. On December 21st NYRA’s creditors will have the opportunity to vote on this plan and on December 27th a confirmation hearing will take place in which the Court may approve NYRA’s reorganization and thus end its bankruptcy. At best, this leaves us with a crippled NYRA and we would at this point be 4 days from shutting down racing.
Meanwhile House Majority Leader, Joseph L. Bruno wants to see the creation of a public entity called the New York State Racing, Gaming and Equine Sports Development Corp. He is recommending an 11-person board, named by the state legislators to select operators to run racing, gaming, marketing, and real estate development as separate entities. Bruno wants VLT’s implemented at Belmont which is not a proposal popularly received within the racing industry. Bruno has a vision of Excelsior Racing Associates, Empire Racing Associates, and Capital Play, Inc competing with NYRA for different facets of the franchise. This all looks good for Joe Bruno and company but it promises little to the future of racing.
Capital Play, Inc. is running a mud-slinging campaign; airing ads in Saratoga Springs, Albany and New York City. Their attacks on NYRA are scathing, and as Charles Hayward, President and CEO of NYRA retorted: "It’s so inflammatory and incorrect, it doesn’t merit a response". It is distasteful and unnecessary for them to stoop to such tactics.
Excelsior Racing Association and Empire Racing Association are both start up organizations headed by leaders from other facets of racing. It would be a real stretch to think there is a safe bet among the NYRA competitors, and even if the three firms challenging to replace NYRA were experienced and well-intentioned; it would remain a very risky bet that they could grasp the intricacies of this mammoth operation quickly enough to keep it running smoothly.
NYRA has approximately 300 million in debts. It owes the state 125 million, is behind 95 million in its pension funds and owes private creditors about 75 million. Governor Eliot Spitzer has proposed keeping NYRA in place for 30 more years, forgive them their debt, and have a separate firm run Aqueduct’s proposed racino. In turn NYRA would relinquish its ownership claim for the racetracks, which are valued at more than a billion.
This purports to be a solution unfavorable in the long term of both racing and for the well-being of the areas surrounding the tracks. An ardent effort should be put toward a less egregious solution.
NYRA’s accumulated tax indebtedness is very possibly a result from many years worth of unfair take-out and miscalculations of taxable earning by the IRS. The IRS is charging NYRA with taxes on its gross income, which equates to 1.6 billion in back taxes. This is absurd. If they don’t balk here, we may all be destined to being led into bankruptcy by the forelock. Government has to play by rules too.
It is a difficult puzzle to solve and before attempting to move any of the pieces an overview of the history of NYRA and the future of racing needs to be considered.
In ’71, Off-Track Betting was installed to destroy "ugly bookmakers". NYRA fumbled that contract by poorly handicapping OTB’s ability to steal away patronage. Thirty-six years later, that fumble looms larger than ever. Attendance at live-racing has steadily decreased and the accumulated damage OTB brought to the bottom line is incalculable. During this period added competition has come from phone and Internet wagering.
The race tracks are guilty of driving away patrons through their lack of hospitality. They have attempted to reduce the sting of lower attendance by charging those that come more. Parking fees have steadily increased and the punishment keeps on, right through the admissions gates, to the price of a program, a seat and a hot dog. A trainer’s wife or jockey’s wife cannot go to the races in New York without paying admission. It’s amazing that they have not raised the price of a $2 wager. No wonder the casual fan or a guy just wanting to buy a daily-double ticket stops by OTB. Fan development has to part of the formula.
But whoa, now Mayor Bloomberg wants New York City to sever ties with OTB. This action could force 73 New York City OTB outlets to close. These betting parlors are unattractive to the Mayor and he is unwilling to give them the help they will require to stay in business. "I have always had reservations about city government being involved in gambling" says the Mayor.
NYRA’s contract with The Off-Track Betting Corp. is flawed, but nonetheless, it does pay revenue to the organization. The long-lost patrons are not likely to return through the gates at the tracks; their habits have changed and there is ever-increasing competition for the gambling dollar. New York City OTB’s paid the racing industry approximately $98 million last year of which NYRA received 54 million. Anyone operating the franchise would be ill-equipped to make do without this revenue.
NYRA has delivered block-buster after block-buster to Saratoga, worthy performances at Belmont and at Aqueduct they nourish the supporting cast. They have proven what new recruits have not, that they are capable of putting on the show. With racing across the nation struggling to be profitable it would be risky to displace management possessing this ability.
The pie is only so big and can only serve so many. Self-preservation is our most basic instinct and Charles Hayward has selected to keep NYRA alive at the expense of paying taxes and satisfying all of its creditors. Their debt reflects the dire need to restructure New York racing and the immediate necessity of properly incorporating VLT’s into downstate racing.
Presently, Senator Bruno is gently stroking the forehead of this nervous industry, assuring its participants that racing’s bugle will be heard into the future. It’s a pretty good bet that he is right. There is too much money involved to think that racing should be interrupted, but the political strife between Governor Spitzer and Bruno is creating obstacles. They are making political hay while one of New York’s most important industries is at peril.
An unjustly treated industry cannot continue to feed government coffers anymore than a lame horse can be repeatedly led to the post. NYRA has paid more than $3.069 billion in direct tax revenue since its 1955 inception and not a nickel of this has resulted from VLT’s. Municipalities will be adversely affected if real estate deals cause shifts in the tax base. We could be in for an ugly break-down.
Any interruption or reduction in New York racing will adversely impact the quality of life, even for those people who will never own, bet on a racehorse, or frankly "give a damn" about horseracing. The foot-print of racing feeds thousands outside the industry in ways that may be veiled but are nonetheless real. For those in the industry, it truly is a run for their life situation.
The horsemen at Aqueduct are acutely worried and rightly so. Aqueduct has never been a "Saratoga" and to think trainers may be stuck there without racing is a real nightmare.
Finally, when global warming has made racing in the northeast tolerable the environment for racing at Aqueduct is so uncertain that many trainers have fled south.
There were a record number of requests for stall space at The Fairgrounds in New Orleans, Philadelphia Park is maxed out and there are no stalls available at Delaware Park, even though that racing season has ended. Laurel is full, as are the stables at Pimlico and Bowie. There are no barns available at the Fair Hill Training Center.
In the past year, the climate in New York racing has prompted as many as 1000 broodmares to ship to states where brighter forecasts are on the horizon. Be prepared for more adverse consequences if racing continues to be ridden into the ground.
The future of 400 breeding farms in New York, and that of numerous ancillary industries are in a quaking mode. The racing industry provides 40,000 jobs across the state. Horses provide opportunities to connect with nature. They require acres to run and develop, and to retire to when their racing careers are over. Race tracks, training tracks and their stabling areas preserve open-space in some of our most densely populated areas. Growing hay, grain and bedding is a green industry itself, and even horse manure serves an end purpose. With racing or even the amount of racing at risk, valuable real estate becomes in danger of being developed and more open-space could disappear. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg!
VLT’s are easier to handle than horses; their return per square-foot of real estate is higher than is that from racing, and their ability to be calibrated to insure profit is very enticing. But, they have a flaw; they are not horse enough to pull the burden of New York State’s tax appetite alone.
It is good to know that horses are not obsolete and that the wonderful tradition of horseracing does have a place in a world dominated by technology, but poorly executed strategies could allow for VLT’s to gain undesirable advantages. Like lost patrons, horses once relocated are not likely to return.
Racing is a tax revenue producing machine, but it requires expansive real estate to stage it. Aqueduct Race Course occupies 192 acres in South Ozone Park, Queens. Belmont Park is made up of 430 acres in Elmont, NY and Saratoga Race Course with its additional Oklahoma track sits on 350 acres in the heart of Saratoga Springs. Knowing the value of real estate and the immediate return its sale could generate causes concern for Bruno’s plan of creating an entity exclusive to real estate development. The silence of political planning is deafening.
It has to be considered that legislators may use management issues as decoys to lure our attention from their real agenda. The ownership and control of the real estate looms a larger issue than who writes the races or who operates the VLT’s. It has become a no holds barred wrestling match and just because we are not seeing the moves does not mean they are not taking place.
The NYRA/OTB/VLT trifecta is a multi billion dollar bet. If we are so naïve as to think that the only dogs on the scent have only the stewardship of lovely Saratoga or the preservation of the great history and tradition of horseracing on their minds; we could be in for a rude awakening.
Spurs need to be put to Governor Eliot Spitzer, state Assembly Speaker, Sheldon Silver and Senate Majority Leader Joseph L. Bruno. It is time for them to put political agendas aside, pick up the reins and place this industry in position to win. They need to address the VLT issue and place it appropriately. We bet on them to lead us, but it was not on the ballot that we should be forced to follow them if they jump the rails.
It is post time for the public to make their collective voice heard or we can prepare to say "Dubai" to the best racing in the world.

Marilyn Lane, a free-lance writer has a lifelong association with horses. Her experience includes more than 20 years as an owner, trainer and breeder o fThoroughbreds. She was an assistant trainer for Hall of Fame trainer, Jack Van Berg during Alysheba’s racing career.