Racing commission considers OTB rules


At least three potential operators of off-track betting parlors attended a meeting of the Maryland Racing Commission yesterday, at which the board started considering rules for regulating OTB facilities.

The public meeting took place a day after Gov. William Donald Schaefer signed into law legislation that permits OTB parlors in the state.

One procedure seems clear: Applicants for OTB parlors must first negotiate an agreement with the thoroughbred and harness tracks before the racing commission will consider granting a permit.

The signed agreement must be attached to the board's permit application.

Among those attending the meeting who expressed interest in OTB parlors were the owner of a rod and reel club in Calvert County; Irvin Hodges, an operator of bingo parlors who was considered as a potential buyer last year of the Charles Town Races; and Chick Lang Sr., a member of the board of directors of Colt Enterprises, which operates Rosecroft and Delmarva Downs. Lang said he has been contacted by a local hotel chain that wants to install OTB parlors.

The first OTB facilities probably will not be functional until late October or November.

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