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The Latest: Officials again delay New Mexico racino decision

December 21, 2018

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — The Latest on New Mexico’s sixth and final horse racetrack and casino license (all times local):

1:35 p.m.

For the second time in a month, New Mexico regulators have delayed a decision on awarding the state’s sixth and final license for a horse racetrack and casino.

The Racing Commission met behind closed doors for about three hours Friday before announcing it would be putting off a decision on the advice of the state attorney general’s office.

At issue is a petition filed in district court by one of the companies vying for the license. The company is seeking a temporary injunction, saying the commission hasn’t done enough to study the issue.

Chairman Ray Willis says the commission is frustrated that it can’t move forward. He says the panel still is committed to awarding the license once it gets approval to act from the attorney general’s office or once a judge rules on the court petition.

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11:45 p.m.

New Mexico regulators are scheduled to take up the matter of the state’s sixth and final license for a horse racetrack and casino.

The Racing Commission will meet Friday in Albuquerque. While the license is on the agenda, it’s unclear whether a final decision will be made.

At issue is a court petition that seeks to temporarily block the commission from making a decision on which of five competing companies will get the license.

The commission voted Dec. 6 to postpone a decision until the court petition was resolved. A hearing on the petition hasn’t been scheduled, but there’s no court order in place preventing the commission from issuing the license.

The state’s five existing racinos have voiced concerns about adding a sixth venue, saying doing so would hurt business.

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