Martinez Signs Horse Racing Crackdown Bills

Apr 2, 2013

New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez has signed legislation into law to finance more testing of race horses for illegal drug use and impose tougher penalties for violations.

Martinez signed the legislation Tuesday in Las Cruces, saying that horse owners and trainers should face harsh sanctions if they endanger a horse or jockey.

One measure will provide about $700,000 a year for testing by the State Racing Commission. The money will come from an existing tax on pari-mutuel wagering at horse racing tracks.

Another new law allows the commission to impose penalties up to $100,000 for violations, including rules against performance enhancing drugs for horses.

The regulatory changes come after a New York Times investigation last year highlighted horse deaths and jockey injuries at tracks across the nation.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.