In a staff report, IHRC Executive Director Deena Pitman, said it was “impossible” to offer its “enthusiastic or unqualified recommendation” for the approval of Eldorado’s permit application.
The statement comes ahead of the Indiana Gaming Commission’s review and possible approval later this week, on Eldorado’s acquisition of Caesars.
Last November, shareholders of both operators agreed to the merger, in a deal worth $17.3bn. At the end of June, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) accepted a proposed consent order.
That now means the merger is subject to approvals from states including Nevada, New Jersey and Indiana.
The IHRC report mentioned that Caesars has done a generally good job as a horse racing operator and maintaining industry standards in the state.
But in terms of Eldorado, the commission staff called it an “entity that is and has been clearly disinterested in horse racing industry since entering in 2014.”
Pitman outlined 22 conditions that Eldorado needs to agree to, for the commission to approve the deal.
The report added: “Now, in the opinion of Commission Staff, the permit holder must be an entity that is not only capable, but eager to lead the Indiana industry into the future.
“Unfortunately, based on all of the information before the Commission Staff, it is not clear that Eldorado offers the capable leadership needed for the future of Indiana racing.”