Code of Virginia

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Code of Virginia
Title 59.1. Trade and Commerce
Chapter 29. Horse Racing and Pari-Mutuel Wagering
5/14/2021

Article 1. Virginia Racing Commission.

§ 59.1-364. Control of racing with pari-mutuel wagering.

A. Horse racing with pari-mutuel wagering as licensed herein shall be permitted in the Commonwealth for the promotion, sustenance and growth of a native industry, in a manner consistent with the health, safety and welfare of the people. The Virginia Racing Commission is vested with control of all horse racing with pari-mutuel wagering in the Commonwealth, with plenary power to prescribe regulations and conditions under which such racing and wagering shall be conducted, so as to maintain horse racing in the Commonwealth of the highest quality and free of any corrupt, incompetent, dishonest or unprincipled practices and to maintain in such racing complete honesty and integrity. The Virginia Racing Commission shall encourage participation by local individuals and businesses in those activities associated with horse racing.

B. The conduct of any horse racing with pari-mutuel wagering participation in such racing or wagering and entrance to any place where such racing or wagering is conducted is a privilege which may be granted or denied by the Commission or its duly authorized representatives in its discretion in order to effectuate the purposes set forth in this chapter.

C. The award of any prize money for any pari-mutuel wager placed at a racetrack or satellite facility licensed by the Commission shall not be deemed to be a part of any gaming contract within the purview of § 11-14.

D. This section shall not apply to any sports betting or related activity that is lawful under Chapter 41 (§ 58.1-4100 et seq.) of Title 58.1.

E. This section shall not apply to any sports betting or related activity that is lawful under Article 2 (§ 58.1-4030 et seq.) of Chapter 40 of Title 58.1, which shall be regulated pursuant to such chapter.

1988, c. 855; 1992, c. 820; 1998, c. 619; 2020, cc. 1197, 1218, 1248, 1256.

§ 59.1-365. Definitions.

As used in this chapter, unless the context requires a different meaning:

"Advance deposit account wagering" means a method of pari-mutuel wagering conducted in the Commonwealth that is permissible under the Interstate Horseracing Act, § 3001 et seq. of Chapter 57 of Title 15 of the United States Code, and in which an individual may establish an account with an entity, licensed by the Commission, to place pari-mutuel wagers in person or electronically.

"Breakage" means the odd cents by which the amount payable on each dollar wagered exceeds a multiple of $0.10.

"Commission" means the Virginia Racing Commission.

"Dependent" means a son, daughter, father, mother, brother, sister, or other person, whether or not related by blood or marriage, if such person receives from an officer or employee more than one-half of his financial support.

"Drug" shall have the meaning prescribed by § 54.1-3401. The Commission shall by regulation define and designate those drugs the use of which is prohibited or restricted.

"Enclosure" means all areas of the property of a track to which admission can be obtained only by payment of an admission fee or upon presentation of authorized credentials, and any additional areas designated by the Commission.

"Handle" means the total amount of all pari-mutuel wagering sales excluding refunds and cancellations.

"Historical horse racing" means a form of horse racing that creates pari-mutuel pools from wagers placed on previously conducted horse races and is hosted at (i) a racetrack owned or operated by a significant infrastructure limited licensee or (ii) a satellite facility that is owned or operated by (a) a significant infrastructure limited licensee or (b) the nonprofit industry stakeholder organization recognized by the Commission and licensed to own or operate such satellite facility.

"Horse racing" means a competition on a set course involving a race between horses on which pari-mutuel wagering is permitted and includes historical horse racing.

"Immediate family" means (i) a spouse and (ii) any other person residing in the same household as an officer or employee, who is a dependent of the officer or employee or of whom the officer or employee is a dependent.

"Licensee" includes any person holding an owner's or operator's license under Article 2 (§ 59.1-375 et seq.).

"Member" includes any person designated a member of a nonstock corporation, and any person who by means of a pecuniary or other interest in such corporation exercises the power of a member.

"Pari-mutuel wagering" means the system of wagering on horse races in which those who wager on horses that finish in the position or positions for which wagers are taken share in the total amounts wagered, plus any amounts provided by a licensee, less deductions required or permitted by law and includes pari-mutuel wagering on historical horse racing and simulcast horse racing originating within the Commonwealth or from any other jurisdiction.

"Participant" means any person who (i) has an ownership interest in any horse entered to race in the Commonwealth or who acts as the trainer, jockey, or driver of any horse entered to race in the Commonwealth or (ii) takes part in any horse racing subject to the jurisdiction of the Commission or in the conduct of a race meeting or pari-mutuel wagering there, including but not limited to a horse owner, trainer, jockey, or driver, groom, stable foreman, valet, veterinarian, agent, pari-mutuel employee, concessionaire or employee thereof, track employee, or other position the Commission deems necessary to regulate to ensure the integrity of horse racing in Virginia.

"Permit holder" includes any person holding a permit to participate in any horse racing subject to the jurisdiction of the Commission or in the conduct of a race meeting or pari-mutuel wagering thereon as provided in § 59.1-387.

"Person" means any individual, group of individuals, firm, company, corporation, partnership, business, trust, association, or other legal entity.

"Pool" means the amount wagered during a race meeting or during a specified period thereof.

"Principal stockholder" means any person who individually or in concert with his spouse and immediate family members, beneficially owns or controls, directly or indirectly, five percent or more of the stock of any person which is a licensee, or who in concert with his spouse and immediate family members, has the power to vote or cause the vote of five percent or more of any such stock. However, "principal stockholder" shall not include a broker-dealer registered under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, which holds in inventory shares for sale on the financial markets for a publicly traded corporation holding, directly or indirectly, a license from the Commission.

"Race meeting" means the whole consecutive period of time during which horse racing with pari-mutuel wagering is conducted by a licensee.

"Racetrack" means an outdoor course located in Virginia which is laid out for horse racing and is licensed by the Commission.

"Recognized majority horsemen's group" means the organization recognized by the Commission as the representative of the majority of owners and trainers racing at race meetings subject to the Commission's jurisdiction.

"Retainage" means the total amount deducted from the pari-mutuel wagering pool for (i) a license fee to the Commission and localities, (ii) the licensee, (iii) purse money for the participants, (iv) the Virginia Breeders Fund, and (v) certain enumerated organizations as required or permitted by law, regulation or contract approved by the Commission.

"Satellite facility" means all areas of the property at which simulcast horse racing is received for the purposes of pari-mutuel wagering, and any additional areas designated by the Commission.

"Significant infrastructure facility" means a horse racing facility that has been approved by a local referendum pursuant to § 59.1-391 and has a minimum racing infrastructure consisting of (i) a one-mile dirt track for flat racing, (ii) a seven-eighths-mile turf course for flat or jump racing, (iii) covered seating for no fewer than 500 persons, and (iv) barns with no fewer than 400 permanent stalls.

"Significant infrastructure limited licensee" means a person who owns or operates a significant infrastructure facility and holds a limited license under § 59.1-376.

"Simulcast horse racing" means the simultaneous transmission of the audio or video portion, or both, of horse races from a licensed horse racetrack or satellite facility to another licensed horse racetrack or satellite facility, regardless of state of licensure, whether such races originate within the Commonwealth or any other jurisdiction, by satellite communication devices, television cables, telephone lines, or any other means for the purposes of conducting pari-mutuel wagering.

"Steward" means a racing official, duly appointed by the Commission, with powers and duties prescribed by Commission regulations.

"Stock" includes all classes of stock, partnership interest, membership interest, or similar ownership interest of an applicant or licensee, and any debt or other obligation of such person or an affiliated person if the Commission finds that the holder of such interest or stock derives therefrom such control of or voice in the operation of the applicant or licensee that he should be deemed an owner of stock.

"Virginia Breeders Fund" means the fund established to foster the industry of breeding race horses in the Commonwealth of Virginia.

1988, c. 855; 1991, c. 591; 1992, c. 820; 1996, c. 319; 1998, cc. 608, 619; 2005, c. 700; 2007, c. 757; 2015, cc. 731, 751; 2018, c. 811.

§ 59.1-366. The Virginia Racing Commission created; members.

A. The Virginia Racing Commission is hereby created. It shall consist of five members appointed by the Governor and confirmed by a majority of those elected to each house of the General Assembly at the next regular session following any such appointment. Each Commissioner shall have been a resident of the Commonwealth for a period of at least three years next preceding his appointment and his continued residency shall be a condition of his tenure in office. The initial appointments shall be as follows: one for a term of one year, one for a term of two years, one for a term of three years, one for a term of four years, and one for a term of five years. Thereafter, all appointments shall be for terms of five years. Vacancies in the Commission shall be filled for the unexpired term in the manner provided for original appointments. Each Commissioner shall be eligible for reappointment for a second consecutive term at the discretion of the Governor. Persons who are first appointed to initial terms of less than five years shall thereafter be eligible for reappointment to two consecutive terms of five years each. The Commission shall elect its chairman. No member of the General Assembly while serving as a member shall be eligible for appointment to the Commission.

B. Each member of the Commission shall receive fifty dollars for each day or part thereof spent in the performance of his duties and in addition shall be reimbursed for his reasonable expenses incurred therein.

C. The members of the Commission shall serve at the pleasure of the Governor.

D. The Commission shall establish and maintain a general business office within the Commonwealth for the transaction of its business at a place to be determined by the Commission. The Commission shall meet at such times and places within the Commonwealth as it shall determine. A majority of the Commissioners shall constitute a quorum for the convening of a meeting, but the performance of any duty or the exercise of any power of the Commission shall require a majority of the entire Commission.

1988, c. 855.

§ 59.1-367. Legal representation.

The Commission shall be represented in all legal matters by general counsel hired by the Commission; however, the employment of such counsel shall be subject to the approval of the Attorney General. The compensation for such general counsel shall be paid out of the funds appropriated for the administration of the Commission. No member of the General Assembly while serving as a member nor any person associated with such member's law practice shall be employed as general counsel.

1988, c. 855.

§ 59.1-368. Financial interests of Commission members, employees and family members prohibited.

No member or employee of the Commission, and no spouse or immediate family member of any such member or employee shall have any financial interest, direct or indirect, in any horse racetrack, satellite facility or operation incident thereto subject to the provisions of this chapter, or in any entity which has submitted an application for a license under Article 2 (§ 59.1-375 et seq.) of this chapter, or in the operation of any such track or satellite facility within the Commonwealth, or in the operation of any wagering authorized under this chapter, or participate as owner of a horse or otherwise as a contestant in any race subject to the jurisdiction of the Commission, or have any pecuniary interest in the purse or prize contested for in any such race. No member of the Commission and no spouse or immediate family member of a Commission member shall make any contribution to a candidate for office or office holders on the local or state level, or cause a contribution to be made on their behalf.

1988, c. 855; 1992, c. 820.

§ 59.1-369. Powers and duties of the Commission.

The Commission shall have all powers and duties necessary to carry out the provisions of this chapter and to exercise the control of horse racing as set forth in § 59.1-364. Such powers and duties shall include but not be limited to the following:

1. The Commission is vested with jurisdiction and supervision over all horse racing licensed under the provisions of this chapter including all persons conducting, participating in, or attending any race meeting. It shall employ such persons to be present at race meetings as are necessary to ensure that they are conducted with order and the highest degree of integrity. It may eject or exclude from the enclosure or from any part thereof any person, whether or not he possesses a license or permit, whose conduct or reputation is such that his presence may, in the opinion of the Commission, reflect on the honesty and integrity of horse racing or interfere with the orderly conduct of horse racing.

2. The Commission, its representatives, and employees shall visit, investigate, and have free access to the office, track, facilities, satellite facilities or other places of business of any license or permit holder, and may compel the production of any of the books, documents, records, or memoranda of any license or permit holder for the purpose of satisfying itself that this chapter and its regulations are strictly complied with. In addition, the Commission may require any person granted a permit by the Commission and shall require any person licensed by the Commission, the recognized majority horsemen's group, and the nonprofit industry stakeholder organization recognized by the Commission under this chapter to produce an annual balance sheet and operating statement prepared by a certified public accountant approved by the Commission. The Commission may require the production of any contract to which such person is or may be a party.

3. The Commission shall promulgate regulations and conditions under which horse racing with pari-mutuel wagering shall be conducted in the Commonwealth, and all such other regulations it deems necessary and appropriate to effect the purposes of this chapter, including a requirement that licensees post, in a conspicuous place in every place where pari-mutuel wagering is conducted, a sign which bears a toll-free telephone number for "Gamblers Anonymous" or other organization which provides assistance to compulsive gamblers. Such regulations shall include provisions for affirmative action to assure participation by minority persons in contracts granted by the Commission and its licensees. Nothing in this subdivision shall be deemed to preclude private local ownership or participation in any horse racetrack. Such regulations may include penalties for violations. The regulations shall be subject to the Administrative Process Act (§ 2.2-4000 et seq.).

4. The Commission shall promulgate regulations and conditions under which simulcast horse racing shall be conducted at a licensed horse racetrack or satellite facility in the Commonwealth and all such other regulations it deems necessary and appropriate to effect the purposes of this chapter. Such regulations shall include provisions that all simulcast horse racing shall comply with the Interstate Horse Racing Act of 1978 (15 U.S.C. § 3001 et seq.) and shall require the holder of a license to schedule no more than 125 live racing days in the Commonwealth each calendar year; however, the Commission shall have the authority to alter the required number of live racing days based on what the Commission deems to be in the best interest of the Virginia horse industry. Such regulations shall authorize up to 10 satellite facilities and restrict majority ownership of satellite facilities to an entity licensed by the Commission that is a significant infrastructure limited licensee, or if by August 1, 2015, there is no such licensee or a pending application for such license, then the nonprofit industry stakeholder organization recognized by the Commission may be granted licenses to own or operate satellite facilities. If, however, after the issuance of a license to own or operate a satellite facility to such nonprofit industry stakeholder organization, the Commission grants a license to a significant infrastructure limited licensee pursuant to § 59.1-376, then such limited licensee may own or operate the remaining available satellite facilities authorized in accordance with this subdivision. In no event shall the Commission authorize any such entities to own or operate more than a combined total of 10 satellite facilities. Nothing in this subdivision shall be deemed to preclude private local ownership or participation in any satellite facility. Except as authorized pursuant to subdivision 5, wagering on simulcast horse racing shall take place only at a licensed horse racetrack or satellite facility.

5. The Commission shall promulgate regulations and conditions regulating and controlling advance deposit account wagering. Such regulations shall include, but not be limited to, (i) standards, qualifications, and procedures for the issuance of a license to an entity for the operation of pari-mutuel wagering in the Commonwealth; except that the Commission shall not issue a license to, and shall revoke the license of, an entity that, either directly or through an entity under common control with it, withholds the sale at fair market value to a licensee of simulcast horse racing signals that such entity or an entity under common control with it sells to other racetracks, satellite facilities, or advance deposit account wagering providers located in or outside of the Commonwealth; (ii) provisions regarding access to books, records, and memoranda, and submission to investigations and audits, as authorized by subdivisions 2 and 10; and (iii) provisions regarding the collection of all revenues due to the Commonwealth from the placing of such wagers. No pari-mutuel wager may be made on or with any computer owned or leased by the Commonwealth, or any of its subdivisions, or at any public elementary or secondary school or institution of higher education. The Commission also shall ensure that, except for this method of pari-mutuel wagering, all wagering on simulcast horse racing shall take place only at a licensed horse racetrack or satellite facility.

Nothing in this subdivision shall be construed to limit the Commission's authority as set forth elsewhere in this section.

6. The Commission may issue subpoenas for the attendance of witnesses before it, administer oaths, and compel production of records or other documents and testimony of such witnesses whenever, in the judgment of the Commission, it is necessary to do so for the effectual discharge of its duties.

7. The Commission may compel any person holding a license or permit to file with the Commission such data as shall appear to the Commission to be necessary for the performance of its duties including but not limited to financial statements and information relative to stockholders and all others with any pecuniary interest in such person. It may prescribe the manner in which books and records of such persons shall be kept.

8. The Commission may enter into arrangements with any foreign or domestic government or governmental agency, for the purposes of exchanging information or performing any other act to better ensure the proper conduct of horse racing.

9. The Commission shall report annually on or before March 1 to the Governor and the General Assembly, which report shall include a financial statement of the operation of the Commission.

10. The Commission may order such audits, in addition to those required by § 59.1-394, as it deems necessary and desirable.

11. The Commission shall upon the receipt of a complaint of an alleged criminal violation of this chapter immediately report the complaint to the Attorney General of the Commonwealth and the State Police for appropriate action.

12. The Commission shall provide for the withholding of the applicable amount of state and federal income tax of persons claiming a prize or pay-off for a winning wager and shall establish the thresholds for such withholdings.

13. The Commission, its representatives and employees may, within the enclosure, stable, or other facility related to the conduct of racing, and during regular or usual business hours, subject any (i) permit holder to personal inspections, including alcohol and drug testing for illegal drugs, inspections of personal property, and inspections of other property or premises under the control of such permit holder and (ii) horse eligible to race at a race meeting licensed by the Commission to testing for substances foreign to the natural horse within the racetrack enclosure or other place where such horse is kept. Any item, document or record indicative of a violation of any provision of this chapter or Commission regulations may be seized as evidence of such violation. All permit holders consent to the searches and seizures authorized by this subdivision, including breath, blood and urine sampling for alcohol and illegal drugs, by accepting the permit issued by the Commission. The Commission may revoke or suspend the permit of any person who fails or refuses to comply with this subdivision or any rules of the Commission. Commission regulations in effect on July 1, 1998, shall continue in full force and effect until modified by the Commission in accordance with law.

14. The Commission shall require the existence of a contract between each licensee and the recognized majority horsemen's group for that licensee. Such contract shall be subject to the approval of the Commission, which shall have the power to approve or disapprove any of its items, including but not limited to the provisions regarding purses and prizes. Such contracts shall provide that on pools generated by wagering on simulcast horse racing from outside the Commonwealth, (i) for the first $75 million of the total pari-mutuel handle for each breed, the licensee shall deposit funds at the minimum rate of five percent in the horsemen's purse account, (ii) for any amount in excess of $75 million but less than $150 million of the total pari-mutuel handle for each breed, the licensee shall deposit funds at the minimum rate of six percent in the horsemen's purse account, (iii) for amounts in excess of $150 million for each breed, the licensee shall deposit funds at the minimum rate of seven percent in the horsemen's purse account. Such deposits shall be made in the horsemen's purse accounts of the breed that generated the pools and such deposits shall be made within five days from the date on which the licensee receives wagers. In the absence of the required contract between the licensee and the recognized majority horsemen's group, the Commission may permit wagering to proceed on simulcast horse racing from outside of the Commonwealth, provided that the licensee deposits into the State Racing Operations Fund created pursuant to § 59.1-370.1 an amount equal to the minimum percentage of the total pari-mutuel handles as required in clauses (i), (ii), and (iii) or such lesser amount as the Commission may approve. The deposits shall be made within five days from the date on which the licensee receives wagers. Once a contract between the licensee and the recognized majority horsemen's group is executed and approved by the Commission, the Commission shall transfer these funds to the licensee and the horsemen's purse accounts.

15. Notwithstanding the provisions of § 59.1-391, the Commission may grant provisional limited licenses or provisional unlimited licenses to own or operate racetracks or satellite facilities to an applicant prior to the applicant securing the approval through the local referendum required by § 59.1-391. The provisional licenses issued by the Commission shall only become effective upon the approval of the racetrack or satellite wagering facilities in a referendum conducted pursuant to § 59.1-391 in the jurisdiction in which the racetrack or satellite wagering facility is to be located.

1988, c. 855; 1990, c. 271; 1991, c. 591; 1992, c. 820; 1993, c. 430; 1998, cc. 619, 845; 2000, cc. 99, 1031; 2003, c. 682; 2004, c. 774; 2005, cc. 633, 700; 2007, c. 757; 2009, c. 142; 2011, c. 732; 2015, cc. 731, 751.

§ 59.1-370. Commission; Executive Secretary; staff; stewards.

A. The Commission shall appoint an Executive Secretary and such other employees as it deems essential to perform its duties under this chapter, who shall possess such authority and perform such duties as the Commission shall prescribe or delegate to them. Such employees may include stewards, chemists, veterinarians, inspectors, accountants, guards and such other employees deemed by the Commission to be necessary for the supervision and the proper conduct of the highest standard of horse racing. Such employees shall be compensated as provided by the Commission.

The Executive Secretary, in addition to any other duties prescribed by the Commission, shall keep a true and full record of all proceedings of the Commission and preserve at the Commission's general office all books, documents and papers of the Commission. Neither the Executive Secretary nor the spouse or any member of the immediate family of the Executive Secretary shall make any contributions to a candidate for office or office holder at the local or state level, or cause such a contribution to be made on his behalf.

B. The stewards appointed by the Commission shall act as racing officials to oversee the conduct of (i) horse racing at licensed racetracks and (ii) simulcast horse racing at satellite facilities. The stewards shall enforce the Commission's regulations and the provisions of this chapter and shall have authority to interpret the Commission's regulations and to decide all questions of racing not specifically covered by the regulations of the Commission. Nothing in this subsection shall limit the authority of the Commission to carry out the provisions of this chapter and to exercise control of horse racing as set forth in § 59.1-364, including the power to review all decisions and rulings of the stewards.

1988, c. 855; 1998, c. 619; 2005, c. 700.

§ 59.1-370.1. State Racing Operations Fund.

A. All moneys and revenues received by the Commission under this chapter shall be placed in a special fund known as the State Racing Operations Fund. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, interest earned from moneys in the State Racing Operations Fund shall accrue to the benefit of such fund.

B. The total costs for the operation and administration of the Virginia Racing Commission shall be funded from the State Racing Operations Fund and shall be in such amount as provided in the general appropriations act.

1990, c. 272.

§ 59.1-371. Fingerprints and background investigations; investigations from other states.

A. The Commission shall fingerprint and require a background investigation to include a criminal history record information check of the following persons to be conducted by a representative of a law-enforcement agency of the Commonwealth or federal government: (i) every person licensed to hold race meetings within the Commonwealth of Virginia; (ii) every person who is an officer or director or principal stockholder of a corporation which holds such a license, and every employee of the holder of any such license whose duties relate to the horse racing business in Virginia; (iii) all security personnel of any license holder; (iv) members and employees of the Virginia Racing Commission; (v) all permit holders, owners, trainers, jockeys, apprentices, stable employees, managers, agents, blacksmiths, veterinarians, employees of any license or permit holder; and (vi) any person who actively participates in the racing activities of any license or permit holder.

B. Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection A, the Commission may, (i) by regulation, establish a procedure to recognize a license or permit issued by another state in which horse racing is authorized when the Commission in its discretion determines that the laws or requirements of the licensing authority for such state governing fingerprinting and background investigations are substantially the same as required under this chapter and Commission regulations, and that the applicant has not been convicted of an offense as provided in subsection C of § 59.1-389 and (ii) waive the requirements for fingerprints and background investigations for permit holders participating in (a) horse racing in nonsecure areas or (b) nonracing activities.

1988, c. 855; 1990, c. 774; 1991, c. 591; 1995, c. 370; 1998, c. 619; 2000, c. 1011.

§ 59.1-372. Virginia Breeders Fund.

There is hereby created within the State Treasury the Virginia Breeders Fund, which Fund, together with the interest thereon, shall be administered in whole or in part by the Commission or by an entity designated by the Commission. The cost of administering and promoting the Fund shall be deducted from the Fund, and the balance shall be disbursed by the Commission or designated entity to the breeders of Virginia-bred horses that win races at race meetings designated by the Commission, to the owners of Virginia sires of Virginia-bred horses that win races at race meetings designated by the Commission, to the owners of Virginia-bred horses that win or earn purse money in nonrestricted races at racetracks in Virginia licensed by the Commission, to the owners of Virginia-bred horses that win races at race meetings designated by the Commission and for purses for races restricted to Virginia-bred or Virginia-sired horses or both at race meetings designated by the Commission. To assist it in establishing this awards and incentive program to foster the industry of breeding racehorses in Virginia, the Commission shall appoint an advisory committee composed of two members from each of the registered breed associations representing each breed of horse participating in the Fund program, one member representing the owners and operators of racetracks and one member representing all of the meets sanctioned by the National Steeplechase Association.

1988, c. 855; 1993, c. 146; 1997, c. 798; 2002, c. 852.

§ 59.1-373. Hearing and appeal.

Any person aggrieved by a refusal of the Commission to issue any license or permit, the suspension or revocation of a license or permit, the imposition of a fine, or any other action of the Commission, may seek review of such action in accordance with Article 5 of the Administrative Process Act in the Circuit Court of the City of Richmond. Further appeals shall also be in accordance with Article 5 (§ 2.2-4025 et seq.) of the Administrative Process Act.

1988, c. 855; 1996, c. 573.

§ 59.1-374. Injunction.

Whenever it appears to the Commission that any person has violated or may violate any provision of this chapter or any regulation or final decision of the Commission, it may apply to the appropriate circuit court for an injunction against such person. The order granting or refusing such injunction shall be subject to appeal as in other cases in equity.

1988, c. 855; 1998, c. 619.