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Monday, February 20, 2012

Monday Headlines

We try to stay out of politics, but U.S. Representative Andy Harris (R-Maryland) has run afoul of his fellow Republicans for putting a ban on double decker trailers for horse transportation in a massive transportation bill pending in Congress.  His fellow Republicans who disdain onerous government regulation are not pleased as are farm and rodeo interests.  Members of his party are wondering why this needs to be in the bill in that the USDA bans double decker trailers for transporting horses which are often used to transport horses to slaughter..  One problem is the USDA has no funding to enforce the ban which leads us to a situation I learned in my Freshman Business Law class Day 1 - "Nothing is illegal until you get caught".  Of course animal-rights groups have bene complaining about the double decker trailers in that they are not high enough for horses to stand up and results in horses falling.  All I can say is good for Mr. Harris.  If giving a horse enough head room for safe transport is onerous regulations, then so be it.  Apparently, anything which costs business money is onerous.

Ontario racing interests are rallying to counter the recommendations of the Drummond Report which calls for cutting subsidies for racing in the province.  A letter campaign and a rally are being scheduled as are other activities.  This is similar to what happened when Governor Christie decided New Jersey was getting out of the racing game.  The industry can certainly react when they are threatened, but heaven forbid it be proactive.  Maybe being proactive and make changes to make the sport more appealing would eliminate the need to react in a crisis.

John Brennan of The Record provides an update on horse racing in New Jersey.  It does indeed look like the New Jersey Thoroughbred horsemen will be running this summer's meet at Monmouth Park and come springtime, the Meadowlands will be rolling out promotions to get casual fans to the track when the weaher turns better.  Brennan feels it will be tough to get the casual fan out; I disagree.  If you give them a reason to come out, they will be there and I am sure Michael Newlin and staff will be busy with some great ideas; especially by not being shackled by the NJSEA which was bleeding money,

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