National HBPA Issues Statement on FTC Approval of HISA Safety Rules



The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) approved the rules and accreditation standards that comprise the Horseracing Integrity and Safety Authority's (HISA) Racetrack Safety Program on Friday.

The National HBPA issued the following statement on Saturday:

“The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) on Thursday, March 3, 2022, issued an order approving without exception all the racetrack safety regulations propounded by the Horseracing Integrity & Safety Authority (HISA). The rubber-stamp order accepted without issue all of the proposed rules as well as acceptance of the Authority's responses to the comments submitted by industry participants.

The order recognized that many of the comments by industry stakeholders were useful and constructive to improve the rules. Yet, the FTC refused to disapprove any rule, nor did it direct such constructive changes be incorporated prior to approval. Instead, the FTC took the position that it would welcome future proposed rule modifications that the Authority decides to submit in response to comments received.

This FTC order makes crystal clear that this private entity of self-appointed rule-makers (i.e., The Authority) has unfettered power without governmental oversight to control the horseracing industry.

The illusion of governmental supervisory control was clearly dispelled with the FTC approving all of the Authority's proposals without exception. It also demonstrated that this private entity will make the rules without regard to the constructive comments of industry stakeholders.

The FTC's order affirms the significant concerns expressed in pending litigation that such a delegation of control is unconstitutional and that the input of those closest to the horseracing industry is no longer relevant.”

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