Otter Calls For Restoring Horse Betting Terminals

BOISE, Idaho (AP) — Gov. C.L. “Butch” Otter says he wants to see lucrative betting machines known as instant horse racing terminals reinstated in Idaho, with tighter regulations.

The Idaho Supreme Court ruled earlier this year that the betting machines are illegal because Otter’s veto of legislation banning them wasn’t returned to lawmakers on time.

In an opinion editorial released Wednesday, Otter said that horse racing services — including pari-mutuel betting terminals — need to be restored in order to preserve the state’s struggling horse racing industry. The governor also called for tighter regulations on the operation and locations of the machines.

Instant horse racing allows bettors to place wages on prior horse races with no identifiable information. The machines have spinning wheels, sounds and animations that mimic slot machines.

Otter’s spokesman Jon Hanian says the governor will elaborate more during his annual address to lawmakers in January.