Assemblyman Hall attended Kentucky Derby as fact-finder, fundraiser
The owner of the racehorse I'll Have Another was not the only Southern Californian to leave the Kentucky Derby a winner over the weekend.
State Assemblyman Isadore Hall III (D-Compton) attended the Triple Crown event as part of a fact-finding trip on the racing industry and said he also came home from the trip with some contributions for his re-election campaign.
"I had people there who contributed to my campaign,'' Hall said, declining to talk about who wrote checks for the less than $20,000 raised. He filed campaign reports indicating he deposited several contributions from out-of-state firms this week, including Southern Wine and Spirits of Miramar, Fla.; Bristol-Myers Squibb of Washington, D.C.; and Federal Express PAC of Memphis, but the reporting does not indicate where the contributions were delivered.
Hall is chairman of the Assembly Committee on Governmental Organization, which oversees the horse-racing industry in California. He said taxpayers did not pay for his trip and he did not bet on a horse.
Hall came away from the grand sporting event convinced that California can do more to build up its horse racing.
"It's a dying industry in California. That's unfortunate,'' Hall said. "We have to do everything we can to restore horse racing in California and make sure that we are creating an environment in California that is conducive to that.''
Hall has authored several bills to help the industry, including one pending measure that would increase the number of races a California horse-racing association may import live by television from out of the state.
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Photo: Exercise rider Johnny Garcia rides Kentucky Derby winner I'll Have Another. Credit: Patrick Semansky / Associated Press