Gov. Rick Snyder’s inaugural speech. “and not leave some behind” Does this include The Michigan Horse Racing Industry?

Wednesday evening was Michigan Governor Rick Snyder’s first address to the state.

I want to focus on specific key points of his inaugural speech on Jan. 1st, and I want to show clear cut statistics how much more the horse racing Industry can contribute to the State of Michigan.

If Gov. Snyder really meant what he said completely and with 100% honesty ” We can only achieve extraordinary things if we aspire beyond traditional thinking. The old, unbelievable needs to become the new achievable.”

Excerpts of Speech:

“We have a road map of how to achieve success. We campaigned on a bold vision, a concise plan and an attitude of action. Clear and tangible steps. We must do more than just ask the government to do things in a new way, we must ask our people to be part of the solution. ”

“With high expectations you can achieve great results. Also importantly with respect to innovation, we have to remember, innovation is not about technology, it’s a state of mind that we all have the power to do. For the reinvention of Michigan going ahead, at a minimum we need to commit to the four following objectives:

Number one, we will be a globally competitive leader in innovation. Number two, we will create more and better jobs. Number three, we will create a bright future for our young people. And finally, we will do this together, and not leave some behind. “

“We all want to live in a state of high expectations, and more importantly high results. We can only achieve extraordinary things if we aspire beyond traditional thinking. The old, unbelievable needs to become the new achievable.

New expectations for our lives, and the lives of our children. Let today be the birth of a new chapter in Michigan’s history. Let today be the birth of the era of innovation and the reinvention of Michigan. ”

 Entire Transcript of Gov. Rick Snyder’s inaugural speech 

So I want to ask and pose some very viable questions to our Governor and apply them to what he in-fact stated with,  We can only achieve extraordinary things if we aspire beyond traditional thinking.

Horse Racing’s Pari-mutual was signed into law in 1933, 78 years ago.

The fact is in 1999 after 65 years of Horse Racing generating Revenue for Michigan the 3 Detroit Casinos entered the picture. Tribunal Casinos were put into play in 1988. The lottery entered the picture in 1972. So in reality Horse Racing alone for 39 years was the sole money-maker for generated revenue to the State of Michigan in the gambling department.

In 1999 two reports were given to the Governor by the Michigan Gaming Control board called, Michigan’sCasino Dawns in Detroit. Annual report for 1999.

The second report was given to the House by The House Fiscal Agency, called Fiscal Focus/ Challenges to Michigan’s Horse Racing Industry. It obviously and sadly went completely ignored. The only focus became Detroit Casinos, with Horse Racing who came before them 65 years being thrown to the side like we were an Industry of nothings. Disheartening for all involved with the Horse Racing who with-in that 1999 report had 42,000 JOBS connected to it.

A 1995 report by Public Sector Consultants, Inc. concluded that the horse racing industry in Michigan contributes substantially to the state’s employment, income, and economic well-being.3 Taking into account both direct and indirect economic impacts, it is estimated that horse racing in Michigan is a $1.2 billion industry responsible for more than 42,000 jobs, $233 million in personal income, and total economic output of $439 million each year.4 Additionally, race tracks and race farm operations support capital facilities with an estimated value of $700 million.

Employment Impacts

3,200 jobs directly related to racetrack operations.

2,059 indirect jobs supported by the spending and wages generated at

race tracks. 8,370 jobs directly related to race farm operations (more than one half

are family members or owners of these operations).

8,677 indirect jobs supported by spending by race farm operations.

Income Impacts

$51.7 million in personal income generated directly and indirectly from

race track operations.

$181.5 million in personal income generated directly and indirectly

from race farm operations.

Output Impacts

$65.7 million in direct and indirect output generated by race track

operations.

$373.0 million in direct and indirect output generated by race farm

operations.

Full-card simulcasting, authorized under the Horse Racing Law of 1995, is directly responsible for turning Michigan tracks into year-round operations and transforming previously part-time employment opportunities to full-time jobs for track employees. Impacts of horse racing extend beyond the entrance gates of Michigan’s parimutuel tracks.

The industry plays a role in state and local finances, contributing more than $31 million annually to state and local coffers primarily through taxes, uncashed tickets, and “breakage. The largest source of state revenue from horse racing is generated by the simulcast wagering tax.

Pursuant to state statute, all breakage is distributed directly to cities/townships where a racetrack is located. According to the 1998 Annual Report of the Office of Racing Commissioner, more than $2.2 million in breakage was provided to local coffers to cover just under $1.0 million in actual costs for local police, fire, and traffic protection services associated with hosting the racetracks. The remaining $1.2 million in breakage was used by local municipalities for other priorities.

With-in this 1999 report contains all charts for Pari-Mutual Wagering, Track Attendance, Purse Distribution, State Revenue and Appropriations, Simulcast Wagering Tax, Track Operating Costs/Loss, Industry Challenges, Options to Aid Horse Racing to the Final Conclusion. One that had a familiar ring from Governor Snyder’s speech Wednesday evening, January 19, 2011.

An excerpt from Industry Challenges:

By far, the biggest challenge facing the industry since enactment of the Horse Racing Law of 1995 has been from other gambling outlets. A number of developments in the gambling/entertainment market such as Casinos in Detroit, Tribunal Casinos throughout the State, The Lottery, Windsor Casino and Racino and the Big Multi-State lottery.

Some industry observers believe that a limited number of gambling dollars exist in the state, and, therefore, they view these developments as “cannibalization” of horse racing.

Excerpts of Options to aid Horse Racing included: Slots, Card Rooms, and Video Lottery Terminals (VLTs).

Off-Track Betting, Revenue Sharing, Tax Reduction. Noting,

Currently, the state imposes a tax of 3.5 percent on the gross simulcastwagering handle of each track; the revenue is dedicated to the Agriculture Equine Industry Development Fund. A reduction in this tax would allow tracks to retain more of the simulcast handle and direct these resources to other track priorities, such as maintenance, capital improvements, and/or promotions.

*** But in 2010, it was the Thoroughbred Horsemen/Women of the State that funded the racing meet at Pinnacle Race Course. With statements by Gov. Granholm’s office lying stating Michigan subsidizes Horse Racing $10 million dollars. I’d like to know where? When it is the Horse Racing Industry that generates this 3.5 Simulcast Tax, yet were not allowed one dime of this money to help fund their racing meet. ***

Slot operations opened at Windsor Raceway in Ontario, Canada in December 1998. Under the arrangement brokered between the industry and the Province of Ontario, 20 percent of the net win is split equally between the track and horsemen purse pools. Industry sources report that the addition of slots has had a positive affect on attendance, wagering, purses, and the number of live racing dates at the track.

Slot machines, card rooms, and VLTs could allow the tracks in Michigan to compete directly with Native American and Detroit Casinos for the gambling dollars available in the state. Introducing these new forms of gambling at the tracks could attract new customers, which might increase total pari-mutuel wagering — both live and simulcast. While the increased wagering level would aid the industry, a portion of the revenue from slots, card rooms, and/or VLTs could be earmarked for breeders’ awards, purses, track improvements, and/or promotions — similar to the Windsor, Ontario model.

But it is the last paragraph of this ignored 1999 House Fiscal Report/ Challenges to the Horse Racing Industry Conclusion that held January 1, 2011 talking points from Gov. Snyder.

A forward-thinking business plan, with input from all factions of the horse racing industry, could identify the tools needed to address the challenges currently facing the industry. Crafting the Horse Racing Law of 1995 required the unprecedented cooperation of all involved with the horse racing industry. A similar level of cooperation will be needed to effectively address the challenges facing the industry today.

Is this not the message we heard in his speech?

“We have a road map of how to achieve success. We campaigned on a bold vision, a concise plan and an attitude of action. Clear and tangible steps. We must do more than just ask the government to do things in a new way, we must ask our people to be part of the solution. “

“With high expectations you can achieve great results. Also importantly with respect to innovation, we have to remember, innovation is not about technology, it’s a state of mind that we all have the power to do. For the reinvention of Michigan going ahead, at a minimum we need to commit to the four following objectives:

Number one, we will be a globally competitive leader in innovation. Number two, we will create more and better jobs. Number three, we will create a bright future for our young people. And finally, we will do this together, and not leave some behind. “

“We all want to live in a state of high expectations, and more importantly high results. We can only achieve extraordinary things if we aspire beyond traditional thinking. The old, unbelievable needs to become the new achievable.

New expectations for our lives, and the lives of our children. Let today be the birth of a new chapter in Michigan’s history. Let today be the birth of the era of innovation and the reinvention of Michigan. ”

~

Sounded the same to me but does Gov. Snyder mean it? Because after the contribution that the Horse Racing Industry has made to Michigan in generated revenue since it was signed into law in 1933. We are what seems to be a very large group of individuals with-in an Industry that Michigan is allowing to not only be left behind but left to completely die off. And we in Horse Racing wonder what we have done to deserve such a fate.

I can’t say that our numbers are 42,000 anymore since this 1995 report was done by Public Sector Consultants, Inc because of Michigan’s refusal to aid Horse Racing with anything suggested in this 1999 Fiscal Focus Report. But I guarantee between Horse Racing and it’s connections to Agriculture. Our numbers are still in the 30,000 range. That’s a lot of JOBS to flush away as if we were completely unworthy and unimportant. Horse Racing held up this State before anybody ever heard of the word Lottery then Casino.

It was Horse Racing here first that now sits completely ignored as we grasp on to our last hope of survival here. No Horse Racing alone cannot generate what the three Detroit Casinos bring in. But why is only Detroit being looked out for in this Dept. of Gambling Revenue. Do you realize how much more money Michigan could bring in with RACINOS?

These Stats don’t lie.

American Gaming Association

States with Racinos

Delaware  Racetrack Casinos

Current # of Operating Racinos 3
Public/Private Arrangement Publicly run video lottery terminals with distributions to operators
Racino Employees 2,3631
Gross Racino Gaming Revenue $564.24 million
Distributions to State/Local Government $227.55 million
Percentage of Revenue Retained by Operator 43.1%
How Taxes Spent General fund
Legalization Date 1994
First Racino Opening Date 1995
Mode of Legalization Legislative action

Source:Delaware Lottery, individual properties

1Employment data from 2008 was used for one property in Delaware that declined to participate in the data collection.

 

Florida  Racetrack Casinos

Current Number of Operating Racinos 4
Public/Private Arrangement Privately operated facilities with slot machines
Racino Employeese 2,156
Gross Racino Gaming Revenue $216.74 million
Distributions to State/Local Government $108.37 million
Revenue Retained by Operator 50%1
How Taxes Spent Statewide education
Legalization Date 2006
First Racino Opening Date 2006
Mode of Legalization Statewide referendum, local option vote, legislative action

Source:Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation, individual properties

1This figure only represents what operators retain after state taxes are collected.  It does not take into account what operators allocate to horse and dog breeders’ funds, local authorities and public gambling awareness.  Thus, the percentage of revenue retained by operators is actually significantly lower than this 50 percent figure.

 

Indiana  Racetrack Casinos

Current # of Operating Racinos 2
Public/Private Arrangement Privately operated facilities with slot machines
Racino Employees 1,847
Gross Racino Gaming Revenue $420.10 million
Distributions to State/Local Governments $115.27 million
Revenue Retained by Operator 54.7%
How Taxes Spent Property tax fund, horse racing industry, local government and French Lick Resort
Legalization Date 2007
First Racino Opening Date 2008
Mode of Legalization Legislative action

Sources: Casino Association of Indiana, Indiana Gaming Commission

 

Iowa  Racetrack Casinos

Current # of Operating Racinos 3
Public/Private Arrangement Privately operated facilities with slot machines and table games
Racino Employees 2,586
Gross Racino Gaming Revenue $435.62 million
Distributions to State/Local Government $101.13 million
Percentage of Revenue Retained by Operator 76.8%
How Taxes Spent Infrastructure improvements, local government, general fund, schools and universities, the environment, tourism projects, cultural initiatives
Legalization Date 1994
First Racino Opening Date 1995
Mode of Legalization Local option vote, legislative action

Source: Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission

 

Louisiana  Racetrack Casinos

Current # of Operating Racinos 4
Public/Private Arrangement Privately operated facilities with slot machines
Racino Employees 2,260
Gross Racino Gaming Revenue $402.65 million
Distributions to State/Local Government $74.29 million
Percentage of Revenue Retained by Operator 74.29%
How Taxes Spent General fund, local parishes
Legalization Date 1994
First Racino Opening Date 1994
Mode of Legalization Local option vote, legislative action

Source: Louisiana Gaming Control Board, individual properties

 

Maine  Racetrack Casinos

Current # of Operating Racinos 1
Public/Private Arrangement Privately operated facility with slot machines
Racino Employees 303
Gross Racino Gaming Revenue $59.20 million
Distributions to State/Local Govt $29.08 million
Revenue Retained by Operator 50.9%
How Taxes Spent Education, health care, agriculture, gambling control board administration and city of Bangor
Legalization Date 2004
First Racino Opening Date 2005
Mode of Legalization Local option vote, legislative action

Source: Maine Gambling Control Board, Penn National Gaming, Inc.

 

New Mexico  Racetrack Casinos

Current # of Operating Racinos 5
Public/Private Arrangement Privately operated facilities with slot machines
Racino Employees 1,446
Gross Racino Gaming Revenue $243.94 million
Distributions to State/Local Government $63.42 million
Percentage of Revenue Retained by Operator 54%
How Taxes Spent General fund, problem gambling treatment
Legalization Date 1997
First Racino Opening Date 1999
Mode of Legalization Legislative action

Source: New Mexico Gaming Control Board, individual properties

 

New York Racetrack Casinos

Current # of Operating Racinos 8
Public/Private Arrangement Publicly run video lottery terminals with distributions to operators
Racino Employees 3,180
Gross Racino Gaming Revenue $1.019 billion
Distributions to State/Local Government $455.48 million
Percentage of Revenue Retained by Operator 35.0%
How Taxes Spent Education
Legalization Date 2001
First Racino Opening Date 2004
Mode of Legalization Legislative action

Source: New York Racing and Wagering Board, New York Lottery

 

Oklahoma  Racetrack Casinos

Current # of Operating Racinos 2
Public/Private Arrangement Privately operated facilities with slot machines
Racino Employees 1,0972
Gross Racino Gaming Revenue $94.13 million
Distributions to State/Local Governments $13.78 million
Revenue Retained by Operator 58.2%
How Taxes Spent Education
Legalization Date 2004
First Racino Opening Date 2005
Mode of Legalization Statewide question on ballot

Source:Oklahoma Horse Racing Commission, State of Oklahoma – Office of the State Auditor and Inspector

1Employment numbers for Oklahoma racinos are based on the three properties that were open during 11 months of 2009. At the end of 2009, only two properties remained open.

 

Pennsylvania  Racetrack Casinos

Current # of Operating Racinos 6
Public/Private Arrangement Privately operated facilities with slot machines
Racino Employees 5,799
Gross Racino Gaming Revenue $1.579 billion
Distributions to State/Local Governments $742.69 million
Revenue Retained by Operator 45%
How Taxes Spent Property tax relief, economic development, tourism, horse racing industry, host local government
Legalization Date 2004
First Racino Opening Date 2006
Mode of Legalization Legislative action

Source: Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board, individual properties

 

Rhode Island  Racetrack Casinos

Current # of Operating Racinos 2
Public/Private Arrangement Publicly run video lottery terminals with distributions to operators
Racino Employees 1,3001
Gross Racino Gaming Revenue $461.17 million
Distributions to State/Local Government $292.09 million (FY 2009)
Percentage of Revenue Retained by Operator 27.3%2
How Taxes Spent General fund
Legalization Date 1992
First Racino Opening Date 1992
Mode of Legalization Legislative action

Source:Rhode Island Lottery, individual properties

12008 employment data was used for one property in Rhode Island that declined to participate in data collection this year.

2 FY 2009 data was used to calculate revenue retained by operator.

 

West Virginia  Racetrack Casinos

Current # of Operating Racinos 4
Public/Private Arrangement Publicly run video lottery terminals with distributions to operators; table games in three locations
Racino Employees 4,688
Gross Racino Gaming Revenue $905.59 million
Distributions to State/Local Governments $408.37 million
Revenue Retained by Operator 43.3%
How Taxes Spent Education, senior citizens, tourism
Legalization Date 1994
First Racino Opening Date 1994
Mode of Legalization Local option vote, legislative action

Source: West Virginia Lottery, individual properties

 

So how about it Governor Snyder, did you mean what you said?

“We have a road map of how to achieve success. We campaigned on a bold vision, a concise plan and an attitude of action. Clear and tangible steps. We must do more than just ask the government to do things in a new way, we must ask our people to be part of the solution. ”

“With high expectations you can achieve great results. Also importantly with respect to innovation, we have to remember, innovation is not about technology, it’s a state of mind that we all have the power to do. For the reinvention of Michigan going ahead, at a minimum we need to commit to the four following objectives:

Number one, we will be a globally competitive leader in innovation. Number two, we will create more and better jobs. Number three, we will create a bright future for our young people. And finally, we will do this together, and not leave some behind. “

“We all want to live in a state of high expectations, and more importantly high results. We can only achieve extraordinary things if we aspire beyond traditional thinking. The old, unbelievable needs to become the new achievable.

New expectations for our lives, and the lives of our children. Let today be the birth of a new chapter in Michigan’s history. Let today be the birth of the era of innovation and the reinvention of Michigan. ”

And finally, we will do this together, and not leave some behind.

Horse Racing in the State of Michigan has been left behind, forgotten about what contributions we’ve made through our 78 year History ( Seabiscuit) here and have been left to die a certain death unless You and the Legislative Body come together.  As in ” And finally, we will do this together, and not leave some behind “.

We expect nothing more and we deserve nothing less. We are asking you to give us Year Number 78 and beyond. There is so much more we can generate to this State if only allowed to. I promise you we will both thrive in the end if the measures are put into place that allow us to continue like other States did to not only help Horse Racing but to help themselves as well.

State By-State  Economic Impact: Racetrack Casinos

The racetrack casino sector continued its growth during 2009. While gaming and tax revenue increases were not as dramatic as in 2007 and 2008, the growth last year is significant because it came during a deep recession that hurt almost every part of the travel and leisure industries. Consumer spending at racetrack casino rose in 2009 to $6.40 billion, a 5.0 percent increase over 2008 figures. The jump in gaming revenues was due, in part, to lndiana’s racetrack casinos having their first full year of operation in 2009 and to the continued growth and maturation of the Pennsylvania market.
 
Gaming tax contributions from racetrack casinos also increased during 2009, with $2.63 billion in gaming taxes being returned to state and local governments, a 1.2 percent increase that was vital during a time when most state and local governments struggled to balance their budgets.

~

This could be Michigan as well. Can you say that we couldn’t use the extra revenue? This can only be a Win-Win situation for all of us both Michigan and the Horse Racing Industry. And this state shouldn’t settle for anything less when others have already forged ahead. Please Reinstate The Office Of Racing Commissioner, place us back where we belong under Agriculture and this time let us both win. It’s been so long overdue.

“We have a road map of how to achieve success. “With high expectations you can achieve great results. And finally, we will do this together, and not leave some behind. ”

Michigan Needs Thoroughbred Horse Racing, Let The Tradition Continue.  

Keep Fighting to Keep Horse Racing alive. We deserve a fair shot to compete.

Contact Governor Snyder: http://www.governorelectricksnyder.com/contact-us

Contact your Representative: http://house.michigan.gov/find_a_rep.asp

Contact your Senator: http://senate.michigan.gov/SenatorInfo/find-your-senator.htm

~

1933 at The Detroit Fairgrounds … when there was no Lottery or Casino… Only Horse Racing that generated revenue to the State. This is Michigan’s real roots.

This hard-working 7 day a week Industry doesn’t deserve to be left behind.

2008 Pinnacle Race Course

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Filed under Detroit News, Horse Racing, Huron Township Michigan, Michigan Casinos, Michigan Governor, Michigan Governor Rick Snyder, Michigan Horse Racing, Michigan Horse Racing News, Michigan News, Michigan Politics, Michigan Thoroughbred Horse Racing, Michigan Thoroughbred Horse Racing History, New Boston Michigan, News, Pinnacle Race Course, Politics, Racinos, The Michigan Gaming Control Board

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