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Old 10-26-2011, 01:16 PM   #1
classhandicapper
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Nassua and Suffolk OTB

This was one of the major causes of the decline of NYC OTB that gets little or no press. It's suspect enough that the OTBs have to make payments to Yonkers, Monticello etc... in order to take bets on out of state tracks like Mountaineer etc.. where they make no money and there is little or no conflict with harness racing, but they had to make them while the harness tracks were closed working on their casinos. It is idiotic mandated costs like this that contribute to the broken racing model in NY that will put Nassau OTB under soon also.

http://www.harnesslink.com/www/Article.cgi?ID=93290

"The payments, mandated by state law, reflect a share of the proceeds OTBs get by simulcasting races from outside the state. All told, the regional OTBs are on the hook for at least $10 million. Nassau is liable for $4.5 million -- the largest tab for any of the regional OTBs in the state."

"In court, the OTBs have argued they don't have to pay the tracks a share at certain times, such as "dark days" when harness tracks weren't racing. They also dispute payments for a roughly 16-month period that Yonkers was closed. They filed several claims challenging the law. The Racing Board has sided with the harness tracks. So far, all the claims have been rejected by the courts."
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Old 10-26-2011, 01:41 PM   #2
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I know I'm an outsider, but it seems to me OTBs were a parasite on the tracks much more than the other way around.
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Old 10-26-2011, 01:58 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cj
I know I'm an outsider, but it seems to me OTBs were a parasite on the tracks much more than the other way around.

CJ this is true now...i think with the widespread advent of internet wagering.

Nyc otb went out of business owing nyra 11 million or so and other tracks
smaller amounts.I have to agree with class that this is a drain on the otb model statewide in ny and this needs to be fixed.I personally do not want to see them go out of business.My online acct is with nassau otb and i still enjoy going out to the Race Palace in Plainview just to get out of the house.
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Old 10-26-2011, 01:58 PM   #4
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OTB is a pathetically run organization that gets no sympathy from me - pay up or shut down. They have been nothing but a detriment to NY racing and breeding. Without OTB, intelligently run off track betting could have been developed with an eye towards growing the industry, not padding relative's pockets.

No OTB is better for racing than OTB.

At least in NY, the moron state.
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Old 10-26-2011, 03:49 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom
OTB is a pathetically run organization that gets no sympathy from me - pay up or shut down. They have been nothing but a detriment to NY racing and breeding. Without OTB, intelligently run off track betting could have been developed with an eye towards growing the industry, not padding relative's pockets.

No OTB is better for racing than OTB.

At least in NY, the moron state.

I am not sure i agree with you and i live in nassau county.Yes the model is somewhat dysfunctional but nassau otb has been very successful and should be able to withstand this if the court rules against them.Why should these otbs pay yonkers for days they did not race or were outright closed.These harness tracks derive the majority of their handle from all the regional otbs and other adw accts that are out there.This seems like a case of biting the hand that feeds.These tracks would be sunk if the otb's decided to stop taking bets on their races.

With that said ... I do agree that their is much waste and operations do need to be streamlined so they can operate profitably well into the future.
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Old 10-26-2011, 04:30 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cj
I know I'm an outsider, but it seems to me OTBs were a parasite on the tracks much more than the other way around.


The way I recall it, the NY racetracks had the opportunity to control the branch business at the start but turned it down. So OTB became an independent agency. When they realized they made a big mistake it became an issue.

I have a lot of contacts on the inside and pretty much know what was going on and why. This is the way I see it.

Despite all the BS, NYCOTB turned out to be wildly profitable for the government, breeders, and various other groups, but it also contributed to the slow decline of on track attendance. It was also extremely inefficient because there were multiple OTB organizations around the state (when you really only need one) and because they all became dumping grounds for political patronage jobs and unions workers paid at above market rates.

However, IMO the media coverage of the some of causes of the decline and how the bankruptcies were handled has been horribly one sided and inaccurate (especially from the DRF).

I think everyone knows that the growth is in the phone, hand held device, and computer model, but most still believe there's a huge role for restaurant branches, large simulcast centers etc... NYRA is going to wind up duplicating a lot of OTB already had.

IMO, the idea was to get from where we were to where we need to get without blowing a ton of the handle and destroying a 1000 jobs (with many more to come at the other OTBs). The government handled the process so badly it's almost a travesty.

I understand and agree with everyone that thinks we'd be better off with NYRA controlling everything, but there's a right way, wrong way, truthful way and BS way to get that done.

I should add that I think NYRA didn't really do anything wrong in the BK process. They made a fair deal. It was the state that screwed it up.
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Last edited by classhandicapper : 10-26-2011 at 04:38 PM.
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Old 10-26-2011, 04:34 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fmolf
My online acct is with nassau otb and i still enjoy going out to the Race Palace in Plainview just to get out of the house.


I went to the Race Palace for the first time during the Saratoga meet. A close friend of mine works there and I know one other regular that hangs out there that has been playing professionally for a long time. I loved the place. I'll probably spend more time there than at AQU this winter.
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Old 10-26-2011, 04:36 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by classhandicapper
The way I recall it, the NY racetracks had the opportunity to control the branch business at the start but turned it down. So OTB became an independent agency. When they realized they made a big mistake it became an issue.

Despite all the BS, NYCOTB turned out to be wildly profitable for the government, breeders, and various other groups, but it also contributed to the slow decline of on track attendance. It was also extremely inefficient because there were multiple OTB organizations around the state (when you really only need one) and because they all became dumping grounds for political patronage jobs and unions workers paid at above market rates.

However, IMO the media coverage of the some of causes of the decline and how the bankruptcies were handled has been horribly one sided and inaccurate (especially from the DRF). I have a lot of contacts on the inside and know exactly what was going on and why.

I think everyone knows that the growth is in the phone, hand held device, and computer model, but most still believe there's a huge role for restaurant branches, large simulcast centers etc... NYRA is going to wind up duplicating a lot of OTB already had.

IMO, the idea was to get from where we were to where we need to get without blowing 65% of the handle and destroying a 1000 jobs (with many more to come at the other OTBs). The government handled the process so badly it's almost a travesty. Part of the decline was caused by idiotic rules like these that drained the OTBs so they couldn't invest.

I understand and agree with everyone that thinks we'd be better off with NYRA controlling everything, but there's a right way, wrong way, truthful way and BS way to get that done.

I should add that I think NYRA didn't really do anything wrong in the BK process. It was the state that screwed it up.

I agree with most everything you said I do not want the nyra to take over.They are basically a Quasi-govt. agency and have had their own problems over the years.

I personally think its time for the whole thing to be run by an outside private for profit company.Although political greed will probably prevent this from ever happening.
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Old 10-26-2011, 05:22 PM   #9
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Nassau Suffolk OTB

These entities are typical of failed (Non-Profit) business models. Suffolk OTB especially, gives absolutely nothing back to the Bettor. That's if you call betting $15,000 plus grand in a month and receiving maybe 1% to 1.5% the following month (you have to call and remind them though) Nassau has gone from OK to worse, but not as bad as Suffolk. The major goal of the OTB managers is to yield a healthy retirement with continued benefits. Most could care less about the Bettor or keeping their business. It's pretty sad.
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Old 10-26-2011, 09:27 PM   #10
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I understand the ire, but IMO if you didn't live within a reasonable drive of a NY track over much of the last 35 years you wouldn't have been able to legally place a bet. The Albany resident (in the pre-internet era) would have had no chance to bet legally on NY for other than the Saratoga meet. That has changed in the internet era, but without OTB's how would the resident of rural upstate have been able to bet the Breeders' Cup or the KY Derby or the 4th at Aqueduct between 1970 (or so) and the last few years?

The "hold harmless" payments to harness tracks are very high and the reason that Capital OTB doesn't take TB after 7:30 on Mon, Tue and Wed nights. The harness tracks are flush with slots cash and the OTB's are paying them for the right to take bets on night TB tracks. It means that despite offering a less desireable racing product the harness tracks are getting money from slots and money from OTB's that they have done nothing to earn.
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Old 10-27-2011, 02:18 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by classhandicapper
Despite all the BS, NYCOTB turned out to be wildly profitable for the government, breeders, and various other groups, but it also contributed to the slow decline of on track attendance.
Not to mention the massive decline in the player's bankroll with that ridiculous "5% surcharge" OTB received on every single winning payoff.
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Old 10-27-2011, 11:40 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by PaceAdvantage
Not to mention the massive decline in the player's bankroll with that ridiculous "5% surcharge" OTB received on every single winning payoff.

At Nassau otb's you can play without the 5% surcharge,if you keep a minimum balance of $300 or play on the internet. Players who are paying the 5% surcharge are not going to win at this game,no matter what they do. It probably doesn't bother them to lose their money a little sooner.
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Old 10-27-2011, 11:06 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Linny
I understand the ire, but IMO if you didn't live within a reasonable drive of a NY track over much of the last 35 years you wouldn't have been able to legally place a bet. The Albany resident (in the pre-internet era) would have had no chance to bet legally on NY for other than the Saratoga meet. That has changed in the internet era, but without OTB's how would the resident of rural upstate have been able to bet the Breeders' Cup or the KY Derby or the 4th at Aqueduct between 1970 (or so) and the last few years?

The "hold harmless" payments to harness tracks are very high and the reason that Capital OTB doesn't take TB after 7:30 on Mon, Tue and Wed nights. The harness tracks are flush with slots cash and the OTB's are paying them for the right to take bets on night TB tracks. It means that despite offering a less desireable racing product the harness tracks are getting money from slots and money from OTB's that they have done nothing to earn.


Yeah, well the OTB's LOBBIED for this this set up thinking that nighttime thoroughbred simulcasting would be a panacea. Just another in a long list of misguided and poor business decisions by the hacks at NY OTBs.
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Old 10-28-2011, 11:53 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PaceAdvantage
Not to mention the massive decline in the player's bankroll with that ridiculous "5% surcharge" OTB received on every single winning payoff.


You could open phone accounts and play by internet with no surcharge.

As far as I know, the surcharge never went to NYC OTB and they probably would have been happy to eliminate it. I wouldn't be shocked if they actively tried to. I think it was put in place during a NYC fiscal crisis and the proceeds went to the city. If anything it was an incentive for serious players to go to the track. It was a ridiculously bad idea like you suggest though.
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Last edited by classhandicapper : 10-28-2011 at 12:05 PM.
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Old 10-28-2011, 12:04 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rico8812
Yeah, well the OTB's LOBBIED for this this set up thinking that nighttime thoroughbred simulcasting would be a panacea. Just another in a long list of misguided and poor business decisions by the hacks at NY OTBs.


It was a terrible business decision (made by a political appointee that was clueless). The rank and file knew it was idiotic a long long time ago. Nonetheless, it's still beyond idiotic to require the OTBs to make those payments when the harness tracks are closed. Those deals should have been squashed or tweaked as soon as legally possible, but maybe the harness tracks paid more to the corrupt politicians than the OTBs did.
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