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Aqueduct VLT Plans Face Further Delays
New York Racing Association president Charles Hayward revealed Aqueduct's racino (which had been expected to open late next year) "might not be operational until mid-2010," reported thoroughbredtimes.com. Three entities "have submitted bids for the contract to operate 4,500 video lottery terminals, but Governor David Paterson has yet to make an announcement despite indications that a decision was forthcoming". Hayward commented: "In July, late 2009 looked realistic. Now I'd say 15-18 months. That's just what I've been told by the bidders. I don't know what's slowing it down." The state (as part of NYRA's new franchise agreement to run racign at Aqueduct, Belmont Park & Saratoga) advanced NYRA US$30 million "to operate until VLT revenue starts to flow". But US Racing Hall-Of-Fame trainer LeRoy Jolley declared: "That's not going to go far in this economy. That's going to get used up pretty quickly." The state approved legislation allowing racetrack racinos in 2001.