NYC OTB reached a deal with its creditors to emerge from bankruptcy. This is good thing for horse racing and needed to happen. It also is a good thing for New York City.
The agreement provides that NYRA, owed $24 million dollars by NYC OTB and the largest creditor will run the internet and phone wagering systems in lieu of a total of $65 million in debt. While the agreement provides for a smaller share for NYRA and other tracks on wagering made at the OTB parlors, they will manage the internet and phone wagering which is a larger percentage of the total betting dollars.
Being that NYC OTB is the largest wagering institution in the country, it was important to racing as an industry that this be saved. Racing cannot survive without NYC OTB, it is racing’s version of “too big to fail.”
Should the Legislature and Bankruptcy court approve the plan, it is another sign that racing is on a direction towards recovery in New York. The $2.4 billion dollar a year industry is vital to the New York economy despite being virtually ignored by government on a state level. This will allow NYRA to recoup dollars that NYC OTB had been witholding which will help, along with VLTs, to secure the future of racing in New York.