03/01/2012 1:15PM

Monmouth: New Jersey horsemen take another step to operating track

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The New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority on Monday signed a deal that will give the state’s horsemen the right to operate Monmouth Park under a lease with the state.

The approval, which had been authorized by the authority’s board earlier this week, is one of the final steps in closing the deal. The New Jersey Racing Commission must also authorize the lease, an approval that is expected within the next month.

Under the lease, the New Jersey Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association will be responsible for the operation of Monmouth Park for the next five years. The horsemen were also given the right to operate five off-track betting locations in the state, including an existing OTB in Woodbridge, and will receive a 50 percent stake in the authority’s account-wagering operation.