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One Voice For Ont. Horsemen?

Published: March 6, 2014 11:26 am ET

Last Comment: March 9, 2014 2:56 pm ET | 8 Comment(s) | Jump to Comments

Central Ontario Standardbred Association President Bill O’Donnell has said that the various groups representing the province’s Standardbred horsepeople will sit down with officials from the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture and Food this month in an effort to establish one group representing Ontario horsepeople.

O'Donnell has been cited as saying that a facilitator from OMAF is supposed to meet with officials from the various groups in an attempt to build the framework by March 31.

The news comes courtesy of a report by Dave Briggs in the Guelph Mercury. In his piece, Briggs states that getting officials from COSA and the Ontario Harness Horse Association (OHHA) ‘together under one roof won’t be easy.’ Briggs has quoted O’Donnell as saying, "Maybe it's going to be a short meeting. I don't know.”

Speaking about the philosophies of COSA and OHHA, O’Donnell said, "So, we do have some differences of opinion, but there's a middle ground, maybe." O'Donnell went on to say, "When you get the government involved and they're giving you money now, it's a little different than it was not only in terms of transparency, but because you have your hat in your hand all the time."

(With files from the Guelph Mercury)

March 9, 2014 - 2:56 pmUltimately ohria is already

Tim Bates SAID...

Ultimately ohria is already the one voice. Ohha burned it's bridge with WEG. Not really sure, is a standardbred horsemen group now going to break away from ohria?

March 9, 2014 - 10:03 amYou are all right, but rather

You are all right, but rather than involve the ORC, let the members from that track elect a rep. and they vote in a chairman from that group. (sounds something like OHHA.) Terry is right on, horsemen have a difficult time agreeing to anything. All the present groups had a chance to unite and take decisive action two years ago and did nothing. I think the horse has left the barn.

March 6, 2014 - 3:17 pmThere is no way that these

Robert Coole SAID...

There is no way that these two groups will sit down and discuss unity. The only way to get unity is blow up both groups and have the ORC members from that area elect one member from each track and have those eight members elect a chairman and this group work for the betterment of the horsemen and women of this province, not special interest of the powers that control them.

March 6, 2014 - 1:55 pmThank goodness - some sanity

Thank goodness - some sanity at last - hopefully we can all act together for the good of a wonderful sport and the COMMON INTEREST of ALL horse people! We sure need a seat at the table and that will only happen if we have a united voice.

March 6, 2014 - 1:41 pmSeems to me that the very

Karry Howard SAID...

Seems to me that the very first recommendation in the Transition Panel's document,Building a Sustainable Future, read in part "One horsepersons group should be created ... by vote of all licensed members." (Page 8) So what happened to my vote?
Is government concerned that we could possibly elect a group that might actually stand up to them? Whatever happened to "Majority Rules?"

March 6, 2014 - 1:12 pmI believe this has been one

Terry Hunter SAID...

I believe this has been one of the ongoing problems with horse racing in Ontario for quite a number of years. Too many organizations, with too many differing opinions that can never seem to come to one common ground and get anything accomplished. We need one voice that can speak for all of the standardbred participants in Ontario. Maybe its finally time to get rid of all the various organizations including COSA, OHHA, Northern Horseman's Association, etc, etc and start all over with ONE defined association made up of a newly elected board with ONE united voice, that actually carries some power and clout once and for all.

March 6, 2014 - 12:19 pmHave an election and form ONE

Norm Brunet SAID...

Have an election and form ONE body that will speak for us all. But the need for an election is important to get off on a good foot.

March 6, 2014 - 12:02 pmWhen you say horsepeople, I

Georg Leber SAID...

When you say horsepeople, I always like to distinguish Harness horsepeople. The reason is that OHRIA is Thoroughbred. It is important to note Thoroughbreds only took a very small hit. The reason is simple. Dennis Mills was a key factor and worked tirelessly on getting Kathleen win elected by the Liberals. Sue Leslie owns throughbreds and has the ear of the Premier-IT'S WHO YOU KNOW

Georg Leber-ICR Racing


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