Racetrack rebate supported by Gov. Christie

TRENTON – A bill that would provide a $10.5 million tax rebate for the construction of a grandstand at the Meadowlands Racetrack received approval from a state tax commission today.

The Sales and Use Tax Commission voted against supporting nearly all of the 23 bills put before it. However, legislation presented as a one-time rebate program intended to spur economic development received unanimous consent from the commission.

Gov. Chris Christie also supports the bill, a point mentioned during the meeting by Commissioner Brandon Minde of the Office of Counsel to the Governor.

The bill would not necessarily equate to an absence of $10.5 million worth of tax revenue, since the state was not going to build the seating area to begin with, he said.

The legislation would only benefit racetracks currently or formerly owned by the New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority.

“It’s just another piece of our support for getting the horse racing industry on its own feet without public support,” said Christie spokesman, Michael Drewniak, echoing Minde’s comments

The bill, S1329, would provide a tax rebate on the purchase of supplies and materials used for building seating at the Meadowlands Racetrack and Monmouth Park. It’s sponsored by Sens. Jennifer Beck, (R-11), Red Bank, and Joe Kyrillos, (R-13), Middletown.

“This is normally something that we wouldn’t support,” Commissioner Deborah Bierbaum said during this morning’s meeting.

Commissioners ultimately agreed to make an exception to the rule, voting to support the bill since it’s a one-time exception and the project would not otherwise get off the ground, officials said.

“In the context that it was explained, I would be in favor,” said Commissioner James Appleton.

The Sales and Use Tax Commission evaluates proposed legislation that could affect New Jersey’s Sales and Use Tax Law.

Earlier Story:

Commission supports rebate for grandstand

 

Racetrack rebate supported by Gov. Christie