Mosier ‘Optimistic’ HISA’s ADMC Program Goes Into Effect In March

January 13, 2023

Ben Mosier, executive director of Horseracing Integrity & Welfare Unit (Photo courtesy of Dave Kaup)

by Ben Mosier, Executive Director of the Horseracing Integrity & Welfare Unit

Update Jan. 12, 2022

“As the designated independent enforcement agency of the Horseracing Integrity and Safety Authority’s (HISA) Anti-Doping and Medication Control (ADMC) Program, the Horseracing Integrity & Welfare Unit (HIWU) has spent the past seven months preparing for the Program’s implementation on January 1, 2023, and stood ready to enforce this national, uniform program on that date pending approval from the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). Following today’s decision by the FTC to deny HISA’s draft ADMC rules without prejudice due to current legal uncertainties, HIWU will continue its education and outreach efforts to all stakeholders in the Thoroughbred industry. As HISA re-submits the draft ADMC rules for the FTC’s approval, HIWU will use any additional time before implementation as an opportunity to ensure the industry is even more prepared for an efficient rollout of this Program, which will promote fair competition in the sport of Thoroughbred racing and the safety and welfare of our human and equine athletes.”

Jan. 10, 2022

Since the Horseracing Integrity & Welfare Unit (HIWU) was named by the Horseracing Integrity and Safety Authority (HISA) to serve as the independent enforcement agency for HISA’s Anti-Doping and Medication Control (ADMC) Program, we have been appreciative of the Thoroughbred industry’s willingness to work with us to help make the ADMC Program a success upon implementation.

While HISA has not been enforcing its rules in Louisiana and West Virginia because of the district court’s preliminary injunction, we thought that you would still like to receive this memorandum that has been sent to other states concerning education for the ADMC Program. The ADMC Program will not be enforced in Louisiana or West Virginia until the applicable parts of the preliminary injunction have been stayed, modified, or dissolved.

As you are likely aware, the ADMC Program had previously been set to go into effect on Jan. 1, 2023, but due to the legal uncertainty at the time, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) rejected the ADMC rules, and implementation was therefore delayed.

Last month, Congress passed an amendment to the Horseracing Integrity and Safety Act of 2020 (Act) modifying the language that the Fifth Circuit identified as rendering the Act unconstitutional. Following the passage of that amendment, HISA resubmitted its ADMC Program Rules to the FTC for approval, and we anticipate that the FTC will post the Rules to the Federal Register in the coming weeks. Once the Rules are posted, there will be another public comment period, and following that comment period, the FTC will have 60 days to approve or deny them. Based on this timeline, we are optimistic that HISA’s ADMC Program will go into effect in mid-March 2023. HIWU will continue to keep racing participants and other stakeholders up to date on the official timing for implementation of the program.

Unless and until the ADMC Rules are approved and an exact implementation date is determined, states will continue to operate under their current rules and regulations.

However, the coming months leading up to the likely implementation of HISA’s ADMC Program offer a great opportunity to provide stakeholders with additional time to understand the components of the Program and get their questions answered. To this end, we will continue to hold meetings with and distribute resources to industry members. This engagement is not intended to confuse anyone as there is no question that state anti-doping and medication regulations remain in effect for now. It is simply to give interested industry participants access to education and resources to facilitate a smooth transition if and when the HISA ADMC Program comes into effect.

HISA’s ADMC Program will create uniformity, promote integrity, and enhance equine welfare in Thoroughbred racing nationwide. For this game-changing program to be effective, all constituents must be informed and prepared. We are committed to this goal in advance of the implementation date and beyond.

The HIWU team welcomes questions regarding the ADMC Program, and we encourage you to reach out to us at info@hiwu.org or (816) 285-1425. Stakeholders can also find a growing library of educational materials at hiwu.org. With your support, we will administer a world-class anti-doping program for Thoroughbred racing.

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