I'm going to post NYRA's response to Robert Megna's letter discussed in the last post in its entirety. That's a post I'd like to have back. It's based on a story that is basically completely bogus, written by a reporter who has shown an eagerness to bash NYRA in the past. The issue was not at all, as James Odato wrote, whether NYRA "has been improperly letting people bet on credit." In fact, there is no issue, as NYRA's procedures regarding express funding of its ADW accounts are completely within the law...a point which some readers were able to ascertain before I did. So I apologize to NYRA and to you readers for jumping the gun without performing due diligence. Though my point that NYRA needs to be extremely careful remains.....and this little imbroglio shows exactly why. NYRA's statement follow. I'm sure you'll soon be seeing it on Capitol Confidential as well.
The following is a response to the letter sent by Robert L. Megna, Chairman of the New York State Franchise Oversight Board, to New York State Racing and Wagering Board (NYSRWB) Chairman John Sabini, dated January 11, 2012, in regards to The New York Racing Association, Inc’s (NYRA) policies on its advanced deposit wagering account funding practices:
The funding policies for NYRA’s advanced deposit wagering program (NYRA Rewards) are in compliance with the law and pursuant to the procedures approved by the New York State Racing and Wagering Board. We refute any allegations that suggest otherwise, and stand by our advanced deposit wagering account funding practices. NYRA welcomes a review of our advanced deposit wagering account funding practices by the NYSRWB.
NYRA Rewards allows customers to make immediate deposits into their accounts of up to $1,000 per week via an electronic funds transfer, referred to as Express Funding. In order to be eligible for Express Funding, a customer must pass a negative check screening process conducted in accordance with financial industry standards using the latest technology available in the marketplace. NYRA screens all of its existing customers and all new customers for eligibility on each request transaction. This process was approved by the NYSRWB on February 26, 2008, and has been in place and followed by NYRA since.
Mr. Megna’s letter asks the NYSRWB to determine whether NYRA has extended credit for any wagering by customers in violation of the Racing, Pari-Mutuel Wagering, and Breeding law. If a customer makes an Express Funding deposit to NYRA with insufficient funds to cover the deposit, NYRA has not extended credit. Rather, the person making the deposit has committed a crime and NYRA has been the victim of fraud. If this occurs, NYRA rigorously pursues recompense from the customer and bank.
Furthermore, NYRA Rewards Express Funding is consistent with industry practices for advanced deposit wagering funding policies. Virtually all industry advanced deposit wagering programs, both within the State of New York , and outside of the State, allow customers to make immediate deposits with similar policies in place to those of NYRA. Some, like Catskill OTB and Nassau OTB, allow customers to make immediate deposits up to $10,000. NYRA Rewards Express Funding is limited to $1,000 per week.