Some committee members evaluating the economic impact of horse racing and rearing in South Carolina suggested that the panel is considering allowing horse racing betting.
The Committee of Equine Industry Support Measures Study, which includes two Senators and House members and two horse industry representatives, and a representative from the state Agriculture Department, will work for the remaining 8 months researching the economic impact horses have on the state.
The committee met last month and intended to meet again in locations where horses are popular, such as Clemson, Camden, and Aiken.
The General Assembly enacted the state statute establishing the committee in April. It instructs the committee to look at how the state might develop the horse racing sector or remove impediments to expansion and compare the incentives given by South Carolina to those offered by other states and if South Carolina can collaborate with horse facilities in other areas.
However, during that initial meeting, the committee also discussed the possibility of permitting horse race betting, as the legislation enables the group to discuss “any other matters that the committee believes are of interest and usefulness.”
According to State Senator, Dick Harpootlian every study should include how to make the state attractive to people from other states who love to bet on horses and races.
However, legislation authorizing horse betting faces a task in the General Assembly, both directly and indirectly.
The state constitution needs changes, which will require a two-thirds vote in both the House and Senate. A majority of voters would next have to ratify the amendment.
A gaming bill was also at the centre of one of the state’s greatest political scandals in history. Operation Lost Trust began as an undercover investigation done to buy support enabling horse betting. When the inquiry was completed 30 years ago, around 18 legislators would face prosecution.
Russell Ott, Committee Chairman and Republican mentioned a need to discuss gambling in the horse industry and is quite vital for South Carolina.