Closing of 2 Illinois harness racing tracks opposed

CHICAGO (AP) — A suburban Chicago lawmaker hopes to reverse an Illinois Racing Board move that’s led to the likely closing of two bankrupt harness racing tracks. Democratic Rep. Thaddeus Jones of Calumet City is sponsoring legislation to allot at least 30 racing days each to Balmoral Park in Crete and Maywood Park in Melrose Park. The state racing board recently awarded the two tracks’ previous racing dates to Hawthorne Race Course in Cicero. Balmoral and Maywood had each sought just two racing dates per week for next year. Both tracks are for sale. The Daily Southtown reports that the House Revenue and Finance Committee canceled a scheduled Wednesday public hearing in Chicago on Jones’ bill. Maywood Park closed on Oct. 2, and Balmoral Park plans to shut down on Dec. 31.