If you go through the financial statements published on the brand new York Racing Association (NYRA) website, you will see that we now have audited financials for each year going back to 2010, as well as quarterly statements for most recent years. In addition, in the portion of the website devoted to NYRA Board of Directors conferences, you’ll see that the conference books for most Board meetings over the past half-dozen years are the most recent quarterly financials. In other words, for some years now, NYRA has been working with admirable financial transparency. How come NYRA longer transparent no?
From enough time “new NYRA” was set up in 2011 until mid-2016, it conducted itself as if it were a governmental entity, performing in ways that were consistent with NY State’s open conferences law and independence of information rules. As well it will have. New legislation this season (2017) transformed the structure of the NYRA Board of Directors while at the same time providing the Franchise Oversight Board even greater forces.
That legislation was agreed upon by Cuomo as part of the State’s 2017-18 budget, until this week but did not get into impact, when “new” Directors — who in truth were virtually the same as the previous Directors — were appointed. Almost a year ago, when I noticed that there were no new financials being submitted on the NYRA website, I filed a Freedom of Information Law (FOIL) obtain them with NYRA.
New York has two important statutes that promote public access to condition agencies. The Open Meetings Law (Sections 100-111 of the Public Officers Law) requires condition agencies to carry out their business in public areas. The Freedom of Information Law (Sections 84-90 of the Public Officers Law) allows the press and individual citizens access to government firms’ records, at the mercy of not a lot of exceptions. Obviously, NYRA is not a direct state agency like, say, the Governor’s Office or the Department of Taxation and Finance.
- Seek Advice Through Acquaintances
- Current Client Relationships – What ways improve your situation with clients
- Content acquisition offers
- Alleviate bottlenecks (systems or people) and automate as much as possible,
- Records of peripheral issues (e.g. weather, consumer numbers and behavior)
- Be open up for other business opportunities and come out of your comfort zone
But that isn’t necessary for an entity to be at the mercy of FOIL. Generally, even private or semi-private entities can by “agencies” for purposes of FOIL if they’re so involved with the declare that it seems sensible to bring them within the reach of FOIL. First, is the entity required to disclose its annual budget? In NYRA’s case, the answer is yes; the budget must be submitted to the State Franchise Review Board for approval.
Second, will the entity maintain offices in a public building? In 2011, when “new NYRA” was established, old NYRA ceded whatever privileges it had to the land under its racetracks it the continuing state. So, while the grandstands may belong to NYRA, the land under them belongs to the state. This factor is also on the side of NYRA’s as an “agency” for purposes of FOIL. Third, is the entity at the mercy of a authorities entity’s approval over hiring and firing? Fourth, does the entity have a Board comprised primarily of government officials? Fifth: was the entity created with a government agency?
State Racing, Pari-Mutuel Wagering and Gaming Act in 2011. Without the authorizing legislation, it wouldn’t exist. Another factor for FOIL. Finally, does the entity explain itself as an agent of the governmental company? NYRA hasn’t explicitly said so, but it offers structured itself as if it thinks itself to be at the mercy of FOIL.
It has appointed a information access official and an appeals official, as required by the FOIL statute, and, up through the finish of 2016, it conducted its Board meetings in public areas, as required by the Open Meetings Law. On balance, then, NYRA was right when it chose back 2011 that it should act like a open public entity.