Enough is enough! I recognize the fact the Ontario provincial government has the right to end the 'Slots at Track' program and force tracks to close and require the surviving tracks to race for what they earn through the handle generated, regardless of the consequences to the industry and the province of Ontario itself. However, they have a moral requirement (If you can you use the term 'moral' when talking about government?) to sit down now with the racetracks, horsemen and breeders to let them know what exactly are the governments plans are and more importantly, what the 'transitional' aid will be.
If you are going to upset the lives of so many people who make their livelihoods in racing or anciliary businesses, they should have the right to plan for their future. Will there be an Ontario Sires Stakes, what kind of purse structure will exist, what racetracks will be open or closed, will there be subsidies for breeding farms, and/or what kind of transitional programs will be available next year for impacted individuals?
Having the answers to these questions, breeders and syndicates may make plans to move their stallions to the United States, make intelligent decisions as to who they will breed their mares to, decide where to have their broodmares reside, and decide if they need to cull their band of broodmares. Trainers and drivers may start making plans as to where they plan to race next year, perhaps even heading to new locales this year to establish themselves. Owners may decide which horses need to go to mixed sales, where to send their horses to race, and decide what stakes races to make payments to. Tracks may start deciding what their schedule will be next year or if they will be closing, giving their employees sufficient warning to start making plans or squirel their funds away for the upcoming hardships they will be going through. It may even be the doomsayers are wrong and things won't be as bad as they think.
The fact is you are dealing with people and you need to treat these people with respect. Letting them make plans based on facts instead of fear is a matter of decency and a responsibility of government.
Support the USO. The Meadowlands is having a benefit this Saturday night for the USO. All proceeds for admission will be donated to the USO and a special barbeque will be available along with a concert. With many U.S. Servicemen still in combat around the world, here is a way to support the USO who provides entertainment and a bit of home to soldiers wherever they are stationed. So come out to the track Saturday night and support our servicemen; it doesn't get any easier.