The racino ‘race’ continues: New Mexico Racing Commission hears Clovis bids

The racino ‘race’ continues: New Mexico Racing Commission hears Clovis bids
The New Mexico Racing Commission is hearing three proposals that could potentially bring the state's final racino to Clovis. (Source: Jami Seymore)

AMARILLO, TX (KFDA) - Eastern New Mexico is one step closer to becoming the potential home of New Mexico’s sixth and final racino.

The racino 'race' continues: New Mexico Racing Commission hears Clovis bids

The race is on across the state of New Mexico. The judges? The New Mexico Racing Commission. The competitors? Five businesses vying for the final racino license in the state.

Three of those businesses hope to bring the racino to Clovis.

Full House Resorts based in Las Vegas, Nev. is proposing a racino resort with a golf course and moving grandstand.

“The bigger market segment is when you build something that’s not just a casino," said Dan Lee, president of Full House Resorts. "So build the hotel, build the golf course, build the showroom, build things for people to see, a spa, lazy river, swimming pool. Most people will, and this is true, most people will gamble if it’s part of a bigger activity.”

Developers behind Clovis Racetrack and Casino are marketing that proposal as “By Horsemen. For Horsemen,” bringing in their experience with horse racing.

L&M Entertainment, a joint venture from companies in Albuquerque and Illinois is proposing Curry Downs Racetrack and Casino.

Local residents showed up inside for the presentations, as well as outside, lining the road to the Clovis Civic Center.

Many sported yellow “Say yes to Clovis Racino” shirts and buttons.

“Growth is good, growth brings people to the place, especially the tourism opportunity like this and I’m just excited about this,” said Clovis resident Ron Kos. "I want to see Clovis grow, I want to see it become better.”

One person we caught outside thinks it will bring jobs to the area.

“I’m for it, I think it’s pretty tight and will be good for our community,” said Clovis resident Ariel Nanez. “More jobs, can get more tourists.”

The racing commission is also considering two other racino applications - one in the southwest part of the state in Lordsburg, as well as another Eastern New Mexico proposal in Tucumcari.

However, after hearing the proposals, the commission could decide not to grant any of them the final racino license.

“We may look at it, the report that we have done and decide we don’t want to do it at all. If we do decide we want to, we will study it," said NMRC Chairman Ray Willis.

The racing commission says the decision to grant the license could take anywhere from one month to six months or more.

While some proposals estimated operations as early as spring of 2020, others say construction and development could bring the racino to you in three years if approved by the commission.

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