Yesterday, the all-mighty Chris Christie vetoed the minutes of the last NJRC meeting which approved 141 day meets at the Meadowlands and Monmouth Park. Yes, we all know that was merely a formality; no one was expecting either breed to race 141 days but the veto was once again a reminder that the Governor holds all the cards in this debate about racing.
In part of his veto message the Governor explained: "An appropriate solution for the state-owned racetracks, which does not unduly burden the taxpayers of this State, must be reached before a schedule for the 2011 racing season can be approved.
The legislature can do what they want and the Governor can merely veto the NJRC minutes and wipe out or greatly reduce any race meet planned in the state. The only ace in the hole racing has is the fact that skimming the meets too much would result in the closing of the profitable OTW locations in the state.
The new deadline for the Meadowlands winter late closing series is now December 10. I would not be surprised to see this deadline extended once more until clarity to the situation comes into focus. Being no serious negotiations have knowingly begun with the legislature; I would find it hard to believe that racing begins in early January.