06/27/2007 11:00PM

California bill would alter board


A California state senator has introduced legislation that would require a majority of the California Horse Racing Board members not be licensed by the racing industry and also calls for the adoption of a code of ethics.

Sen. Leland Yee, a Democrat who represents the San Francisco area, introduced the legislation to the Senate on Wednesday. Under the legislation, no more than three members of the seven-member board could be licensed by the racing industry, and those three members would need to each represent specific geographic areas of the state. The bill would also require that the board adopt the code of ethics by July 1, 2008, and that all members receive ethics training.

Currently, five of the board's members are licensees. California law prohibits someone from serving on the board if the person has a financial interest in a track or a financial interest in a company that does business with a racetrack.

Yee criticized the board when it denied a request by Bay Meadows for a two-year waiver on a requirement for all major racetracks in the state to install a synthetic surface by the end of 2007.