Commission set to review racetrack applications Wednesday

Chelle Delaney

The New Mexico Racing Commission will announce Wednesday the date it plans to declare its selection for the last remaining racetrack license in the state, according to the agenda for the commission’s next regular meeting on Wednesday.

The commissioners will also meet in a closed session to discuss three separate license applications, including the application by Coronado Partners, LLC, for Tucumcari, according to Wednesday’s agenda posted on its Web site.

Coronado Partners is seeking to develop Coronado Park Race Track and Casino.

Wednesday’s meeting is to be in Santa Fe and begin at 8:30 a.m. with a closed executive session and to reconvene at 9:30 a.m. for a public session at the State Personnel Office, Leo Griego Auditorium, 2600 Cerrillos Road, Santa Fe.

Following the public session, the commissioners are to go into a closed meeting to discuss the race meet license applicants.

Others vying for the race meet license are the Pueblo of Pojoaque Development at Santa Fe and Racing at Raton, LLC, at Raton.
The commission can change its agenda up to 24 hours before the meeting.

The Racing Commission held a public hearing in Tucumcari on July 24 when about 1,400 people turned out to listen to Coronado Partners’ plans for a racetrack and to tell the commission how they have viewed the proposed racetrack. The majority of speakers before commission favored the racetrack.

Coronado Partners wants to build a racetrack and casino off of Route 66 between Interstate 40 and Mountain Road.

As part of a gaming compact, the applicant must be first approved for the racing license and then apply to the state’s Gaming Commission for the casino license.

In the first year, Coronado Park is projected to make $12 million in operating revenues, of which 5 percent would be distributed among the public ownership groups of Quay County, Tucumcari and the villages of San Jon and Logan, after deductions for debt service, an investor in Chalmer’s group has said.

Coronado Park is expected to make a $60 million initial project investment. Its payroll is estimated to be $8.9 million and it’s estimated to create 400 full and part-time jobs including 100 construction jobs.