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Federal horserace authority rules again blocked in 2 states

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — A national horse racing authority has again been blocked by a federal court from enforcing some of its rules in the states of Louisiana and West Virginia.

A north Louisiana federal judge last month had blocked the Horseracing Integrity and Safety Authority from enforcing its rules in the two states.

That ruling was put on hold last week by the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. But a revised ruling this week from the New Orleans-based appeals court keeps some of the limits on enforcement in place.

Rules blocked under the latest court order deal with the authority’s access to racetrack records and facilities, the calculation of state fees paid to the authority, and definitions of which horses are covered by the regulations.

The appeals court on Wednesday set arguments in the case for Aug. 30.

State and racing officials in Louisiana and West Virginia had sued to prevent the rules from going into effect.

In his July ruling, U.S. District Judge Terry Doughty in Monroe said the authority did not provide enough time for public comment before adopting the rules. And he said the authority likely went beyond its bounds when it comes to how horses covered by the rules are defined, the ability for investigators to confiscate records from anyone who owns or “performs services on” a covered horse and basing state payments for upkeep partly on race purses.