CONCORD, N.H. (AP) -- By a 14-10 vote, the Senate on Thursday refused to change a law benefiting a motor sports track in Tamworth.
Club Motorsports wants to build a $14 million facility with a 3.3 mile racecourse off Route 25. Under a law passed last year, such private driving instruction and exhibition facilities would be exempt from local race track ordinances, but track opponents came back with another bill this session to repeal that law. It would have given regulatory power to selectmen for tracks at least two miles long.
Senators argued they shouldn't pull the rug out from under Club Motorsports, which has invested millions on the project. They said it would set a bad precedent to approve a law one year and repeal it the next.
Senators who want power returned to the town's selectmen argued lawmakers should never have interfered in a local affair.
"Keep it local decision-making and support the towns that have concerns," argued Cornish Sen. Peter Burling. Opponents have said the track will be too noisy and could damage the environment.
The track's supporters argue it will boost the local economy.
"This opened the door for an investment as well as bring what I call class to an area that really needs help. In doing so, all kinds of jobs were brought to that area," said Manchester Sen. Andre Martel.