05/22/2001 11:00PM

Missouri simulcasts stalled


Magna Entertainment's dreams for a racetrack in Missouri died for 2001 when the state Senate adjourned last week without addressing a bill that would have legalized year-round simulcasting.

The Senate closed its 2001 session on Friday leaving the simulcasting bill on the table. The legislation had narrowly passed in the House earlier this year, behind the support of Magna lobbyists.

Magna officials had said it could not support a racetrack in Missouri without the revenues from year-round simulcasting. The company, which owns eight racetracks, including Santa Anita Park and Gulfstream Park, had pledged to build a racetrack in the state if the legislature passed the bill.

The bill would have required any developer to spend $25 million on a track and hold 50 live race days. Parimutuel wagering was legalized in the state in 1984, but the same legislation allowed for simulcasting on live racing days only.