Provincial funding to assist Kawartha Downs and other Ontario horse racetracks

Haliburton-Kawartha Lakes-Brock MPP Laurie Scott says amendments to an agreement will provide additional funding to Ontario horse racing tracks including Kawartha Downs in Fraserville. Office of MPP Laurie Scott

The province of Ontario says an additional $3 million per year will assist Kawartha Downs and other horse racing tracks.

The province late last month approved amendments to the existing 19-year long-term funding agreement (LTFA) reached in April 2019 with the horse racing industry including 15 racetracks.

According to Haliburton-Kawartha Lakes-Brock MPP Laurie Scott, the amendments will extend additional funding by $3 million per year to help the horse racing industry recover from the coronavirus pandemic while developing a new three-year strategic business plan to support a 15-track model provincewide.

Read more: Woodbine Racetrack ends horse racing season after talks with Ontario government

Among the racetracks in the model is Kawartha Downs in Fraserville, just south of Peterborough.

“Our government’s commitment to building and supporting a sustainable racing industry is crucial during these uncertain times,” Scott said. “The horse racing industry is an important part of our rural economies and that is why we will continue to focus on recovery by providing financial support through the LTFA.

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”The LTFA came into effect last year and is providing stable financial support for racetracks, horse-people and breeders over a 19-year period.”

The amendments to the LTFA were approved by all four parties to the LTFA, OLG, Ontario Racing (OR), Ontario Racing Management and Woodbine Entertainment Group.

The board of OR includes representatives of racetracks, horse-people and breeders of thoroughbred, standardbred and quarter horse.

Scott says the amendments give the industry time to recover, preserve local employment and work toward new strategic plans.

— More to come.

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