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OHRIA: Keep Gaming At Tracks


Published: January 24, 2012 3:03 pm ET

Last Comment: January 30, 2012 6:33 pm ET | 8 Comment(s) | Jump to Comments

In response to the report that surfaced earlier this week stating Ontario's slots-at-racetracks program could see some competition, the Ontario Horse Racing Industry Association has issued a press release and fact sheet illustrating the benefits of the current model.

The release, in response to the report advising the province to create "alternative gaming sites" away from racetracks, appears in its entirety below.

Throughout 2011, OHRIA has been working with the Government through the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation (OLG) in an effort to ensure that expanded gaming be included with the highly successful Slots at Racetracks Program. This Program has effectively reversed the decline of the horse racing industry and stabilized the rural economies in Ontario securing more than 60,000 jobs.

With more than $2 billion in accruing annual expenditures, 80 percent of which are in rural Ontario, horse racing is the second largest agricultural sector in the Province of Ontario.

As recent as January 19, 2012, Government MPPs, Ministers and Municipal Mayors have received a highlight sheet (available here) from OHRIA outlining the positive impacts of The Ontario Horse Racing Industry. The highlight sheet, along with the comprehensive 2010 Economic Impact study (available here), are also available on the OHRIA website.

Armed with this highlighted information, OHRIA is encouraging all participants in thoroughbred and harness racing in Ontario to contact their municipal, provincial and federal leaders in support of the Slots at Racetracks Program and directing any future expansion of gaming to the racetracks.

For more information contact your OHRIA Board Representative or call 416-679-0741 or email [email protected]

(OHRIA: Photo credit: Michael Burns)

January 30, 2012 - 6:33 pmThanks to this group(OHRIA)

Thanks to this group(OHRIA) for fighting for the common ground. If only we could all stand together as horsemen, then positive results could be attained. I for one will be contacting my Local MPP, as well as passing this information to other horsemen.

Terry Jackson

January 26, 2012 - 7:29 pmSo let's take the OHIRA at

So let's take the OHIRA at it's word and we have to don't we. So the "average expense of a racing standard bred is $59,000. a year". Then please OHIRA would you explain to us when over 80% of "racing standardbreds" make less than that(most far less)per year what is going on??

January 25, 2012 - 10:57 amAll horsepeople's groups

Lynne Magee SAID...

All horsepeople's groups should be contacting their members (by phone or letter if necessary) to let them know that their input is needed and that they need to take action NOW!

January 25, 2012 - 9:49 amAlso, put petitions at all

Also, put petitions at all tracks to be signed by all members of the horse racing industry

and others who disagree with this ridiculous idea.

January 25, 2012 - 9:06 amA downloadable PDF of the

A downloadable PDF of the highlight sheet is available at

January 25, 2012 - 8:24 amThis is the site for the

Lynne Magee SAID...

This is the site for the contact information for our MPPs can be found:

January 25, 2012 - 5:17 amThank you SC for posting

Rick Bossie SAID...

Thank you SC for posting this. We need to spread this word. Everyone that reads this should write their MPP citing the facts shown here. Mr. McKnight makes an awesome comparison to the auto industry and it is my belief that if McGuinty has any plan at all to move the slots it will be done very quietly. We need these facts to be out there - loud and proud. Again, thank you SC.

January 24, 2012 - 5:21 pmGreat reports that OHRIA has

Cam McKnight SAID...

Great reports that OHRIA has commissioned.

Wondering if OHRIA (or Standardbred Canada) could make them available as downloadable pdf files. Further to this, an article providing the email addresses of all Provincial Members of Parliament would be helpful.

If those two things were available, I would encourage every horse-person in Ontario to forward the respective documents to the email address of their local MPP.

There are some 60,000 jobs at risk (look at Quebec racing -- hardly any jobs left). Does the government realize this would be the same as closing 30 major auto plants (ie Toyota) in this Province!

We presently have a minority government. I can't believe any Premier in his right mind would close 30 major auto plants -- nor should they similarly threaten to shut-down that same number of jobs connected to Ontario's racing industry. To make such a move would be suicide, and could trigger and election (a real hot button issue for the Conservatives).

OHRIA has provided the info, it our our responsibility to make sure our MPPs see it, and realize the consequences of reducing the slot revenue.

Cam McKnight.

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