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12/02/97 PER HENRIKSEN v. ILLINOIS RACING BOARD

December 2, 1997

PER HENRIKSEN, PLAINTIFF-APPELLANT,
v.
ILLINOIS RACING BOARD, AN AGENCY OF THE STATE OF ILLINOIS; GARY STARKMAN, RICHARD H. BALOG, RALPH M. GONZALEZ, WILLIAM E. JACKSON, GENE LAMB, LORNA E. PROPES, AND JOHN B. SIMON, MEMBERS OF THE BOARD; AND RICHARD GARRETT, BRAD DYE AND JOHN EDDY, STEWARDS, DEFENDANTS-APPELLEES.



Appeal from the Circuit Court of Cook County. Honorable John K. Madden, Judge Presiding.

Released for Publication January 22, 1998.

Justice McNulty delivered the opinion of the court. Rakowski and Tully, JJ., concur.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Mcnulty

Justice McNulty delivered the opinion of the court:

In this case we must decide the territorial extent of the Illinois Racing Board's jurisdiction. We find its power limited to racetracks in the State of Illinois.

Per Henriksen trains and drives horses. On September 2, 1995, one of the horses he trained raced in Illinois. A laboratory discovered a foreign substance, phenytoin, in the horse's urine after the race. Because the finding proved a violation of State rules, the Board suspended Henriksen for 15 days, from September 26 through October 10, 1995, denying him "the privileges and use of the course and grounds of all racetracks and wagering locations under the jurisdiction of the Illinois Racing Board."

On October 7, 1995, Henriksen drove a horse in a qualifying race in New Jersey. On October 9, 1995, Henriksen drove horses in two races in New York, and a third horse in a race in New Jersey. Also, on October 2, 1995, Henriksen went to a Kentucky racetrack during a sale and entered an area not open to the public. Under the New Jersey Administrative Code, "Full force and effect shall be given to the denial, revocation or suspension of any license by any other racing commission or turf governing body." N.J.A.C. 13:71-1.10. The New York State Racing and Wagering Board abides by the bylaws of the Association of Racing Commissioners International (ARCI), which provide:

"Every Board, Commission and Regulatory Agency identified with or belonging to the corporation shall uphold the ruling of every other Board, Commission and Regulatory Agency likewise identified with or belonging to the corporation. The denial of a license or a suspension or a revocation of a license by any member Board, Commission or Regulatory Agency shall be deemed to be such a ruling."

When the Illinois Board's stewards learned of Henriksen's conduct in New Jersey, New York and Kentucky, they issued a ruling, dated October 21, 1995, suspending him for six months and fining him $1,000 for violating the prior suspension. Henriksen requested a hearing before the Board. At the hearing Henriksen admitted that he violated the suspension but he explained the reasons for his error. He stressed that he had no intention of violating the order. He did not contest the Board's jurisdiction.

The Board, by a vote of five to two, upheld the six month suspension and the fine. The two dissenting board members believed the Board lacked jurisdiction because the acts occurred on racetracks in other states. On November 14, 1995, the day the Board rendered its decision, Henriksen filed a complaint for administrative review. Henriksen contested the Board's jurisdiction as well as the evaluation of the evidence and the severity of the punishment. The court affirmed the Board's order.

On appeal, Henriksen again challenges the Board's jurisdiction. The Board argues that Henriksen waived the issue by failing to raise it in proceedings before the Board. "Waiver does not apply, however, when the argument challenges the authority of the administrative forum to adjudicate causes." Board of Education of Community High School District No. 94 v. Regional Board of School Trustees, 242 Ill. App. 3d 229, 234, 608 N.E.2d 517, Withdrawn and Substituted, 613 N.E.2d 754, 758 (1993). Therefore, parties may object to jurisdiction at any time. Tower Hill School District No. 10 v. Regional Board of School Trustees, 267 Ill. App. 3d 180, 183, 640 N.E.2d 1386, 204 Ill. Dec. 37 (1994).

The United States Supreme Court stated the basic principles of territorial jurisdiction in Pennoyer v. Neff, 95 U.S. 714, 720-22, 24 L. Ed. 565, 568 (1878):

"The authority of every tribunal is necessarily restricted by the territorial limits of the State in which it is established. Any attempt to exercise authority beyond those limits would be deemed in every other forum, as has been said by this court, an ...


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