MARCH 24, 2000

ARCADIA, CA – Racing Commissioner Robert H. Tourtelot, who had been acting chairman of the California Horse Racing Board since former Chairman George Nicholaw’s term on the Board expired last month, received the unanimous support of the other three commissioners Friday to be elected chairman of the commission that regulates the California horse-racing industry.

The members also unanimously elected Commissioner Joseph Fenley to serve as vice chairman of the Board.

Tourtelot, 65, has been a member of the Board since October 6, 1993, when he filled the seat vacated by William Lansdale. In 1997 former Governor Pete Wilson reappointed Tourtelot to a second term that expires July 26, 2001.

A graduate of Hastings School of Law at UC Berkeley, Tourtelot is a partner in the professional law firm of Tourtelot & Butler, which is a Los Angeles firm specializing in litigation and transactional projects.

Tourtelot is a member of the board of directors of DARE America and of the Los Angeles Police Department Crime Prevention Advisory Council. He is a special reserve officer for the LAPD. He also holds a commercial helicopter pilot license.

Tourtelot resides in Los Angeles with his wife, Susan. He has one son, Robert Jr., and three daughters, Adrienne, Nicole, and Katherine.

In accepting the chairmanship, Tourtelot acknowledged the expert leadership that was provided by Nicholaw and by Ralph Scurfield before him with the comment, "Those are some pretty incredible people to follow."

Tourtelot continued, "My first act as chairman will be to ask for a minute of silence in honor of the late Senator Ken Maddy, whose contributions to the California horse-racing industry will be felt for many years to come."

Fenley has been a commissioner since 1996. His current term expires July 26, 2000. He sold his business, a thriving international freight and passenger service, in 1993 in order to spend more time with his wife, Gigi, and their two children, Bryan and Grace. The family resides in Rancho Santa Fe.


In other business, Fenley delivered the report of the Security and Licensing Committee, which met earlier Friday to discuss a wide range of issues relating to security, discipline, investigations, and the role of the stewards at racetracks.

Fenley reported on the implementation of a new process in cases involving certain medication violations and other selected cases. Deputies with the Attorney General’s Office will be presenting the cases to the Board of Stewards during administrative hearings, replacing the longstanding practice of having CHRB investigators present those cases.

CHRB Executive Director Roy Wood said this development resulted from several years of discussions with the Attorney General’s Office.

Fenley and the other two members of the Security and Licensing Committee, Commissioners Marie Moretti and Sheryl Granzella, will be meeting monthly to address these issues.

The Board approved the license application of the Los Alamitos Quarter Horse Racing Association to conduct a race meeting at Los Alamitos from April 14 through December 17.

The Board voted not to approve the proposed distribution of $120,000 in charity race day proceeds by the Bay Meadows Foundation after a staff review determined that only slightly more than 15% of the money is allocated to racing-related charities. The California Business and Professions Code mandates that "at least 20% of the distribution shall be made to charities associated with the horse-racing industry."

The Board approved the request of Autotote Systems Inc. to upgrade the encryption system for the California racing network. The upgrade will provide enhanced video quality, improved reliability, and increased security for the simulcast signal.

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