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Far Hills Race Day Wagering Bill on State Senate Agenda Today

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TRENTON, NJ - The full New Jersey State Senate on Monday will consider a bill that would allow pari-mutuel wagering at sanctioned steeplechase events. The bill, A1697, and its Senate companion S2394, would have the effect of bringing state-sanctioned wagering to the Far Hills Race Day for the first time.

Assembly Republican Leader Jon Bramnick was a prime co-sponsor in the Assembly. Bramnick represents the 21st Legislative District, which includes Far Hills. The Assembly bill had bi-partisan sponsorship and unanimously passed the full assembly on June 27.  

Bramnick touted the charitable aspect of the bill. If the bill becomes law, then the Far Hills Race Association would be able to apply for a permit which would allow it to operate wagering on race day. "It would raise money for charity," said Bramnick, "so it's a good thing."

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The Senate bill is co-sponsored by Senator Christopher "Kip" Bateman, Senator Tom Kean, Jr. and Senator Kevin O'Toole. The Senate State Government, Wagering, Tourism and Historic Preservation Committee reported the bill out of commitee on July 14.  It is on the agenda for today's Senate voting session.

The 96th running of Far Hills Race Day will be on Oct. 15. The event raises money for the Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital in Somerville. The hospital's cancer center, The Steeplechase Cancer Center, is named for the event.

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