Florida Senate - 2020                                    SB 1316
       By Senator Thurston
       33-01281-20                                           20201316__
    1                        A bill to be entitled                      
    2         An act relating to trust funds; creating s. 550.914,
    3         F.S.; providing legislative findings; creating the
    4         Greyhound Compensation Trust Fund within the Division
    5         of Pari-mutuel Wagering within the Department of
    6         Business and Professional Regulation; specifying the
    7         purpose of the fund and authorized uses of the assets;
    8         requiring the division to contract with a certain
    9         organization to develop criteria and guidelines
   10         relating to the fund; requiring that any balances in
   11         the fund at the end of the fiscal year remain in the
   12         fund; providing for future review and termination of
   13         the fund; providing a contingent effective date.
   15         WHEREAS, Florida has a long and rich history of greyhound
   16  racing, with the first racing greyhound track in the state being
   17  built in 1922, and
   18         WHEREAS, afterwards, racing greyhound tracks were quickly
   19  established throughout Florida, including a track in St.
   20  Petersburg in 1925, a track in Miami in 1926, tracks in Sanford
   21  Orlando and Miami Beach in 1927, and a track in Tampa in 1932,
   22  and
   23         WHEREAS, in 1931, Florida became the first state in the
   24  United States to legalize wagering on greyhounds, and
   25         WHEREAS, the greyhound racing industry employs thousands of
   26  people in Florida, including greyhound owners, trainers, and
   27  other business owners who have invested millions of dollars in
   28  their greyhound-racing related businesses, and
   29         WHEREAS, s. 32, Article X of the State Constitution
   30  authorized greyhound racing permitholders to discontinue live
   31  greyhound racing beginning December 31, 2018, and prohibits the
   32  wagering on and racing of greyhounds after December 31, 2020,
   33  and
   34         WHEREAS, the constitutional ban on the wagering on and
   35  racing of greyhounds will displace kennel operators and others
   36  employed in the greyhound racing industry and has already had an
   37  immediate and adverse economic impact on the investment-backed
   38  expectations of greyhound racing dog owners, breeders, and other
   39  property owners negatively impacted by the ban, and
   40         WHEREAS, the United States Constitution and the State
   41  Constitution prohibit the government from taking private
   42  property through regulation, or otherwise, without providing the
   43  owner just compensation, and
   44         WHEREAS, it is appropriate to lessen the financial impact
   45  and burden resulting from the constitutional ban on greyhound
   46  racing and wagering, NOW, THEREFORE,
   48  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   50         Section 1. Section 550.914, Florida Statutes, is created to
   51  read:
   52         550.914Greyhound Compensation Trust Fund.—
   53         (1)The Legislature finds that:
   54         (a)As a result of the approval by the voters of this state
   55  of the amendment to the State Constitution prohibiting the
   56  wagering on and racing of greyhounds:
   57         1.Thousands of people who work in the greyhound racing
   58  industry will lose their jobs; and
   59         2.Racing greyhound owners and kennel owners will lose
   60  millions of dollars in property value; and
   61         (b)It is appropriate and necessary to establish a fund to
   62  compensate such persons by redirecting revenue generated by the
   63  pari-mutuel industry.
   64         (2)The Greyhound Compensation Trust Fund is created within
   65  the division.
   66         (3)(a)The fund is established for use as a depository for
   67  funds to be used for compensating persons who were affected by
   68  the prohibition on the wagering on and racing of greyhounds in
   69  the State Constitution. Moneys to be credited to the trust fund
   70  consist of funds from pari-mutuel, slot machine, and cardroom
   71  revenues under this chapter, chapter 551, and s. 849.086,
   72  respectively.
   73         (b)The division shall contract with a statewide
   74  organization whose purpose is to promote greyhound racing in
   75  this state to develop criteria and guidelines for the
   76  qualification of persons for compensation under this section.
   77         (4)Notwithstanding s. 216.301 and pursuant to s. 216.351,
   78  any balance in the trust fund at the end of the fiscal year
   79  shall remain in the trust fund at the end of the year and be
   80  available for carrying out the purposes of the trust fund.
   81         (5)In accordance with s. 19(f)(2), Art. III of the State
   82  Constitution, the Greyhound Compensation Trust Fund, unless
   83  terminated sooner, shall be terminated on July 1, 2024. Before
   84  its scheduled termination, the trust fund shall be reviewed as
   85  provided in s. 215.3206(1) and (2).
   86         Section 2. This act shall take effect upon becoming a law,
   87  if SB ___ or similar legislation is adopted in the same
   88  legislative session or an extension thereof and becomes a law.