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Leal Named Ag Minister

Published: June 25, 2014 11:37 am ET

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The Ontario Horse Racing Association has issued a release stating that it is pleased with the announcement that Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne has named Jeff Leal as Minister of Agriculture and Food, taking over those duties from Wynne.

The cabinet shuffle took place Tuesday, June 24. For further details, click here.

A report by the CBC explains that Wynne will continue as Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs, although Leal will take over the Agriculture and Food portfolio.

Via release, OHRIA President and Chair Sue Leslie said, "The past two years have seen tremendous changes [for the Ontario horse racing industry], with significant issues that need to be addressed, and Minister Leal has already demonstrated through word and action a genuine concern for the horse racing and breeding industry. We expect the government will be a strong partner in tackling these concerns in the next few months."

The contents of OHRIA’s release appear below.


OHRIA Welcomes Minister Leal

The Ontario Horse Racing Industry Association (OHRIA) is pleased with the announcement that Premier Kathleen Wynne has named Jeff Leal as Minister of Agriculture and Food, taking over those duties from Wynne.

The Agriculture portfolio is very important for members of the horse racing industry, and OHRIA looks forward to dealing with Minister Leal in this key position.

As Minister, Leal will also be continuing in the position of Minister of Rural Affairs, we know the Minister already has a great insight into the concerns of our members and we are interested in building our relationship further.

"The past two years have seen tremendous changes for our industry, with significant issues that need to be addressed and Minister Leal has already demonstrated through word and action a genuine concern for the horse racing and breeding industry," said Sue Leslie, President and Chair of OHRIA. "We expect the government will be a strong partner in tackling these concerns in the next few months."

Prior to the cancellation of the Slots at Racetracks Program 60,000 people were employed in the horse racing and breeding sectors. The industry continues to employ tens of thousands and plays an important role in the economy of rural Ontario, and OHRIA looks forward to our next meeting with Minister Leal to work together on building a strong partnership with the government.



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