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Candidates Respond To OHRIA Survey

Published: June 4, 2014 9:56 pm ET

Last Comment: June 5, 2014 8:39 am ET | 1 Comment(s) | Jump to Comments

OHRIA is posting the responses to support that have been received on the value4money.ca website and will continue to post the responses at they are received.

Also attached is the Ontario PC Plan for Horse Racing Jobs which was sent by a couple of the candidates who have responded.

(OHRIA)


Todd McCarthy – Ontario PC Candidate for the riding of Ajax-Pickering

“Count on me and the Ontario PC Party as the next MPP for Ajax-Pickering to stand up for your 60.000 member industry. We will restore the Slots at RaceTracks revenue sharing plan that was cancelled by the Liberal govt. I have pledged my unwavering support to Barry Picov and Bob Broadstock of Ajax Downs.”

Michael Ceci – Ontario PC Candidate for Willowdale

“While there are no horse racing tracks in my riding of Willowdale, the Ontario PC Party and I support Ontario’s horse racing industry. If elected, a PC government and I would work towards reversing the damages done to the industry by the McGuinty-Wynne Liberal governments. You can read our plan for horse racing jobs in the attached document. We’ve got a job to do. It’s time to get Ontario working better.”

Toby Barrett – Ontario PC MPP for the riding of Haldimand-Norfolk-Brant

“Mr. Barrett is behind the horse racing industry. Answers to questionnaires will come from the central party.”

Adam DeVita – Ontario NDP Candidate for Richmond Hill

Q1. Do you agree with this statement and will you support racetracks as sites for expanded gaming centres?
A1: We support the Slots at Racetracks Program. It makes sense to increase the enjoyment and excitement of race day with other festivities and games.

Q2. Do you think integrating horse racing, and specifically racetracks, into the OLG’s Modernization Strategy is the best option to maintain a sustainable horseracing industry? If not, what do you think is the best option
A2: I think the OLG’s Modernization Strategy was created for the purpose of expanding revenue to the government at the expense of other priorities, a sustainable horse racing industry and related jobs being one of them.

Q3. As a way of ensuring that HORSERACING remain sustainable, do you agree that racetracks should have the first right of refusal to host a new casino before
building new casinos in the same region?
A3: We are committed to openly consult with citizens about potential casino locations. This question seems to presume that there would be new casinos.

Q4. Do you believe the horse racing industry is economically important for the
province and would provide a better opportunity for increasing gaming revenue for the province than building new casinos?
A4: Yes.

Q5. Do you believe a revenue sharing partnership is the best way to ensure long-term support and viability of horse racing in Ontario? If no, what do you believe is a better option?
A5: Yes.

Jeff Yurek – Ontario PC MPP for Elgin-Middlesex-London

Yurek pledged his support for racing.

Celia Ross – Ontario NDP Candidate for Sault Ste. Marie

“There was outrage across rural Ontario when the McGuinty government (of which Kathleen Wynne and Ted McMeekin were senior cabinet ministers) abruptly announced the end of the ‘Slots at the Racetracks’ program – devastating the horse racing industry.

Ontario’s seventeen tracks provided $3.7 billion in revenue over the past 15 years: a critical industry for our province and its third largest agricultural industry next to dairy and beef. In 2012, Flamboro Downs supported 176 direct racing jobs, 250 race-day positions and provided about $4.5 million in revenue to the municipality; by 2013 as a result of the McGuinty-Wynne-McMeekin reorganization of the industry, Flamboro Downs went from 188 races down to 100.

Ontario’s New Democrats understand the horse racing industry is vital for tens of thousands of direct and indirect jobs in rural Ontario. Failing to consult and prepare industry for major changes doesn’t make sense. The Ontario NDP has called on government to re-introduce the SARP until a better plan could be agreed on in consultation with industry. Communities have made it clear that they do not want casinos that the Liberals were trying to force on them. The Ontario NDP is committed to a vibrant future for the horse racing industry and our agricultural sector.”

Garfield Dunlop – Ontario PC MPP Simcoe North

“I trust you know I’m fully behind the OHRIA, and recognize the magnitude of the challenge facing the industry as a result of the Liberals devastating cuts.

I hope to have the opportunity to continue working with groups like the OHRIA in the next legislature.”

John J. Martins – Ontario People Party Candidate for Etobicoke Centre

Q1.Do you agree with this statement and will you support racetracks as sites for expanded gaming centres?
A1: Yes, I would like to expand gaming centre to all racetracks

Q2. Do you think integrating horse racing, and specifically racetracks, into the OLG’s Modernization Strategy is the best option to maintain a sustainable horseracing industry? If not, what do you think is the best option
A2: It’s certainly a good option, so yes….I would like to secure the future of Fort Erie Race Track by seeking an historical designation and run it like Saratoga “Festival Days” model………..Parks Canada to trustee the track.

Q3. As a way of ensuring that HORSERACING remain sustainable, do you agree that racetracks should have the first right of refusal to host a new casino before building new casinos in the same region?
A3: Yes absolutely

Q4. Do you believe the horse racing industry is economically important for the province and would provide a better opportunity for increasing gaming revenue for the province than building new casinos?
A4: It was working fine before the Liberals killed SARP. Woodbine was becoming the star in North America attracting investment from America trainers. Now without SARP they have gone home.

Q5. Do you believe a revenue sharing partnership is the best way to ensure long-term support and viability of horse racing in Ontario? If no, what do you believe is a better option?
A5: Yes it’s the best option. If it isn’t broken…don’t fix it !

Donna Skelly – Ontario PC Candidate for Ancaster-Dundas-Flamborough-Westdale

Skelly pledged her support for racing.

Kathleen Wynne - Ontario Liberal Premier, Candidate for Don Valley West

"Thank you for your letter and questionnaire regarding the Ontario Liberal Party’s plans to work with our partners to support world class horse-racing in our province. I welcome this opportunity to respond to your questions.

On June 12th the people of Ontario will make a critical choice about our future. Choosing the Ontario Liberals means taking a stand for jobs, for growth, and for keeping our recovery on course. Ontario Liberals will continue to work to create opportunity for all by investing in people, in transit and infrastructure, and in supporting a dynamic and innovative business climate. We will create a new Ontario Retirement Pension Plan to give you a more secure retirement, and continue the investments in health care, education, and those Ontarians who just need a boost, or some special supports, to get by and get ahead.

As reflected in my answers, Ontario Liberals stand firmly behind our initiatives to create a sustainable future for the horse racing industry. I am heartened by the progress we have made together. We hope to have the support of your organization on June 12th."

Donna Tiqui-Shebib - Ontario Liberal Candidate for Hamilton Centre

Please view the PDF from the Liberal Party below to read Donna Tiqui-Shebib’s pledge for horse racing.

Sandra Yeung Racco - Ontario Liberal Candidate for Thornhill

Please view the PDF from the Liberal Party below to read Sandra Yeung Racco’s pledge for horse racing.

Pina Martino - Ontario PC Candidate for Etobicoke Centre

A robust horse racing industry is an essential component of Ontario’s rural economy. The Liberal government pulled the plug on a successful slots at racetracks program in favour of building 29 new casinos across the province. This ill-considered decision was made without any plan to transition the industry to sustainability. It devastated the horse racing industry, putting tens of thousands of jobs at risk.

The Ontario PCs have put forward a plan to strengthen partnerships with the job-creating horse racing industry, not tear them apart. It’s what rural Ontario, the horse racing industry and thousands of dedicated workers deserve. The core elements are:

1. Put an immediate and permanent end to the Liberals’ so-called “modernization plan” that would close down racetrack slots in favour of building 29 new casinos in locations yet to be determined.

2. Re-establish, but fix, a slots at racetracks program that will be transparent, accountable and affordable to the taxpayer. Look to best practices in U.S. jurisdictions like New York and Pennsylvania as models.

3. Form public-private partnerships with businesses that know how to run slots and other games to increase the overall revenue that can be shared with the horse racing industry and taxpayers.

4. Build off of what is already working and successful. New gaming operations – like table games and sports betting – should go to racetracks, as opposed to building 29 new casinos.

5. Enforce strong accountability and transparency mechanisms around how the revenue is used, as recommended in the 2008 Sadinsky report.

Nancy LeBlanc – Ontario Liberal Candidate for Parkdale-High Park

Please view the PDF from the Liberal Party below to read Nancy’s pledge for horse racing.

Arthur Potts - Ontario Liberal Candidate for Beaches-East York

"Thank you for your invitation to complete the Ontario Horse Racing Industry Association’s survey. I appreciate your concerns, and I, too, believe it is important to work with each other to create a long-term meaningful partnership. Together, we can achieve success."

Please view the PDF from the Liberal Party below to read Arthur’s pledge for horse racing.

Wayne Gates - Ontario NDP MPP for Niagara Falls

Please view the PDF from the NDP below to read Wayne's pledge for horse racing.

Mike Patrick - Ontario PC Candidate for Durham

Mike Patrick has expressed his commitment to the industry.

Paul Miller - Ontario NDP Candidate for Hamilton East Stoney Creek

Please view the PDF from the NDP below to read Paul's pledge for horse racing.

Indira Naidoo-Harris - Ontario Liberal Candidate for Halton

Please view the PDF from the Liberals below to read Indira's pledge for horse racing.

Dipika Damerla - Ontario Liberal Candidate for Mississauga East-Cooksville

Please view the PDF from the Liberals below to read Dipiki'a pledge for horse racing.

Jib Turner - Ontario PC Candidate for Algoma-Manitoulin

“Even though we do not have horse racing in my riding you have my support."

Julia Munro - Ontario PC Candidate for York-Simcoe

Q1: Yes and yes.

Q2: Yes.

Q3: Yes, this would ensure the best coordination of efforts. OLG should work cooperatively with all the people and businesses in Ontario.

Q4:Yes. Casinos are very expensive to build and operate, which leads to diminishing profits.

Q5: Yes. A cooperative approach based on revenue sharing should be our focus.

Martin Forget - Ontario PC Candidate for Ottawa Vanier

Please view the PDF from the PCs below to read Martin's pledge for horse racing.

Shafiq Qaadri - Ontario Liberal Candidate for Etobicoke North

Please view the PDF from the Liberals below to read Shafiq's pledge for horse racing.

Lou Rinaldi - Ontario Liberal Candidate for Northumberland Quinte West

Please view the PDF from the Liberals below to read Lou's pledge for horse racing.

Nadine Kormos-Hawkins - Ontario NDP Candidate for Markham-Unionville

“I am aware of public opinion and the effect that the loss of Slots at Racetracks Program has had on Ontario Horse Racing and deeply regret the lack of consultation by the Liberal government that led to that decision. The NDP has championed your cause in legislature over the past year and remain resolved in this support.”

Please view the PDF from the NDP below to read Nadine's pledge for horse racing.

France Gelinas - Ontario NDP Candidate for Nickel Belt

Please view the PDF from the NDP below to read France's pledge for horse racing.

Rod Jackson - Ontario PC Candidate for Barrie

“The PC Party put the cost-sharing program in place that so ably supported the race industry and it was the Liberal party the dismantled that program, devastating the horse racing industry in Ontario.

Should the PC Party form the next government, the program will be put back in place so your industry can again flourish and create the jobs so needed in Ontario.

You have my full support on this.”

Paula Peroni - Ontario PC Candidate for Sudbury

"I have and will continue to support the horse racing industry that the Liberals have decimated. I held a rally here in Sudbury when this came to a head 18 months ago. I have also continued to keep this in the forefront in the media as well. I believe my actions and my record demonstrate my commitment to the industry."

Laurie Scott - Ontario PC Candidate for Haliburton-Kawartha Lakes-Brock

Please view the PDF from the PCs below to read Laurie's pledge for horse racing.

Jeff Leal - Ontario Liberal Candidate for Peterborough

Please view the PDF from the Liberal Party below to read Jeff's pledge for horse racing.

Tracey Weiler - Ontario PC Candidate for Kitchener-Waterloo

Please view the PDF from the PCs below to read Tracey's pledge for horse racing.

Deb Matthews - Ontario Liberal Candidate for London North Centre

Please view the PDF from the Liberal Party below to read Deb's pledge for horse racing.

Rob Leone - Ontario PC Candidate for Cambridge

Please view the PDF from the PC Party below to read Rob's pledge for horse racing.

James Gordon - Ontario NDP Candidate for Guelph-Wellington

“With many racetracks so close to our community this is something which is definitely a concern for us. The ONDP has sent in a response on our behalf.”

Please view the PDF from the NDP below to read James' pledge for horse racing.

Marie-France Lalonde - Ontario Liberal Candidate for Ottawa-Orleans

Please view the PDF from the Liberal Party below to read Marie-France's pledge for horse racing.

Jeff White - Ontario PC Candidate for Mississauga-Erindale

“I am very supportive of re-establishing horse racing as a viable, vibrant business in Ontario. I will be a champion for Horse Racing.”

Christine Milks - Ontario Liberal Candidate for Leeds-Grenville

“I’ve attached a statement from the Premier I am pleased to support.”

Please view the PDF from the Liberal Party below to read Christine's pledge for horse racing.

Ann Hogarth - Ontario Liberal Candidate for Barrie

Please view the PDF from the Liberal Party below to read Ann's pledge for horse racing.

Loralea Curruthers - Ontario Liberal Candidate for York-Simcoe

"I know that many people in York-Simcoe rely on the horse racing industry for their livelihood and therefore this is an issue that I would be eager to work on if I am elected on June 12th."

Please view the PDF from the Liberal Party below to read Loralea's pledge for horse racing.

Monte Kwinter - Ontario Liberal Candidate for York Centre

Please view the PDF from the Liberal Party below to read Monte's pledge for horse racing.

Cindy Hackelberg - Ontario NDP Candidate for Thornhill

Please view the PDF from the NDP below to read Cindy's pledge for horse racing.

Wayne Wright - Ontario Liberal Candidate for Kitchener-Conestoga

Please view the PDF from the Liberal Party below to read Wayne's pledge for horse racing.

Ken Kirupa - Ontario PC Candidate for Scarborough-Guildwood

Please view the PDF from the PC Party below to read Ken's pledge for horse racing.

Taras Natyshak – Ontario NDP MPP Candidate for Essex

Please view the PDF from the NDP below to read Taras' pledge for horse racing.


Liberal Response

 

NDP Response

 

PC Response

 

June 5, 2014 - 8:39 amTo Michael

To Michael Ceci--Willowdale

While there is no racetrack in your riding as you say.
Please recognize that just as important there are several owners of horses in your riding.
Without significant incentive for owners to invest--especially in Ontario sired yearlings there will be minimal need for racetracks in any riding.

Lou Liebenau


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