December 19, 2013
HBPA President Blair Miller returned to Winnipeg to lend support when the
Manitoba Jockey Club held a joint press conference with Peguis First Nation to announce an exciting partnership which will see the land south of the grandstand developed into retail stores, two hotels and convention facilities.
Over concerns of this partnership, the Manitoba Horse Racing Commission threatened initially not to grant a 2014 license to the track which would have resulted in the suspension of Simulcasting effective Jan 1, 2014.
However following a court injunction, an interim license has been granted to Feb 28th. A court hearing is set for Feb 25th, 2014 to resolve this issue.
This partnership will provide a much needed and very welcome infusion of financial support for Thoroughbred Horse Racing in Manitoba and we join the Manitoba Jockey Club and the Peguis First Nation in the celebration of this excellent news!
There are several media reports that you may wish to check out. Simply search -- Manitoba Jockey Club on your search engine (ie.google)
Additional details will follow as they become available.
Spring training starts March 1, 2014
Annual Awards Banquet to honour the stars of 2013 will be held May2, 2014
and Opening day will be Sunday May 4th, 2014 !!!!!
September 20, 2013
A contract between the Manitoba Jockey Club and the Horsemen for the 2014 season was signed today . We will run for the same purse levels and will start our 60 day meet on Sunday, May 4th.
Graded Purse schedule to follow.
....AND TAKE ACTION!!!
It is possible to speak to the Legislative Committee or submit a letter concerning Bill 47, which if passed would remove the VLT's from Assiniboia Downs and reduce the pari-Mutuel Levy funding which would drastically reduce the purse pool and be the end of racing in Manitoba.
You can call the Clerk of the Legislature at 204 945 3636 for information about making a submission or, ideally, speaking to the Committee. It will be in the evening and you will be called about a week in advance with date, time etc. This is very important if we want to preserve horse racing in Manitoba.
IMPORTANT POINTS YOU CAN STRESS;
Any significant reduction of VLT or Pari-Mutuel Levy revenue will dramaticallv reduce the purse pool and be the end of racing in Manitoba.
The Red River Ex is not a viable alternative to the Manitoba Jockey Club as they have no means of replacing the revenue, no experience running a Race Track or any business, and have no plan as to how to do so.
The end of racing would mean the loss of hundreds of jobs and mean the Government would lose those tax revenues as well as their share of the VLT revenues.
MOST IMPORTANT: PLEASE STRESS THE IMPACT ON YOU PERSONALLY for example:
A Lose my job
B. My business is finished
C. Lose my farm. Etc
It is very important to send a message to the Government and Minister Struthers that
this Bill is seriously flawed and will KILL RACING. Please make an effort to make a presentation. If you register to appear and can't make it you can submit a letter. If you have any questions or require help please contact the HBPA.
April 25,2013 - Here is a sample letter that you may want to send to your MLA:
simply hil light it with your mouse, then right click copy then go to word and paste it. You can then customize as desired.
April , 2013
MLA for the riding of_______________________
In the April 2013 budget the Provincial Government has proposed major reductions to two important sources of funding for the horse racing industry in Manitoba.
These reductions alter the racetrack's (ASD's) share of the revenue from the on-site VLT machines and redirect at least some of the pari mutuel tax revenues from the promotion of horse racing in Manitoba to the government's general revenue fund. Both of these revenue sources are raised entirely on site from patrons of the facility. That is to say, none of the financial support of ASD is from general tax revenue.
The proposed reductions will have such a negative impact on the operation of the only major race track in Manitoba that ASD may have to cease operations.
ASD provides essential revenue to fund the horse breeding and racing industry in Manitoba. Many of the horses racing at ASD are bred and raised in Manitoba. Hundreds of people are employed at the track, on farms and with various suppliers to the industry.
Persons directly and indirectly employed in the horse racing industry will suffer serious personal and financial consequences if they lose this employment.
I urge you, in the strongest possible terms, to maintain and strive to increase, funding of horse racing in Manitoba. Horse racing is a vital part of our economy and a key tourist attraction.
My Occupation/ Racing Involvement:
April 17, 2013 -
The Government has announced they will
"slash 5 million from public subsidies of 9.5 million to horse racing through legislative changes to the Pari Mutuel Levy Act and the Manitoba Jockey Club's VLT siteholder agreement"
Please contact your MLA to express your concern regarding the Mb Governments action to reduce funding of horse racing in Manitoba at Assiniboia Downs.
For a complete list of MLA’s and their contact info go to:
On left sidebar under Members
Click on; Alphabetical Listing
Or Constituency List
Which will provide you with their phone number, fax number, email address and their snail mail address.
April 13, 2013 - There are articles in the Saturday Wpg. Free Press written by Paul Wicek that will be of interest to all; "NDP can't break this horse:MJC" , "Jockeying for position", and "Doubts affecting Down's future" Plus an article written by a staff writer "Just whose money is it? "
If you would like to read the documents filed in court by the MJC requesting a judicial review of the government decision to reduce funding to ASD you can go to the Court of Queen's Bench counter at 400 York. there is a $5.00 fee to view or for about $35-$40 in quarters, you can make a photo copy (.25 per page) . OR you can visit the HBPA office and read our copy.
The file # is CI1-B-01-82759
April 10, 2013
Ap3- Check the Winnipeg Free Press April 10 edition under Opinion - The View From the West. There is a letter written by former Chairman of the Manitoba Horse Racing Commission, Wayne Anderson, which gives a very clear explanation of how horse racing is funded
April 4, 2013
There are a number of articles in the media. Google "Manitoba Jockey Club"
April 3,2013 - MJC Press Release:
MANITOBA JOCKEY CLUB GRANTED FULL, EXPEDITED JUDICIAL REVIEW
Also Ask RCMP to Investigate Possible Criminal Conduct
April 3, 2013 – The Manitoba Jockey Club (MJC) was granted a full, expedited Judicial Review Hearing in Queen’s Bench late yesterday afternoon – a process that can normally take many months to schedule. Given the urgency of the situation, the Judicial Review Hearing, under which legislative and executive actions are subject to review (and possible invalidation), will begin on April 26, 2013.
Also yesterday, the MJC filed a formal complaint and Request for Investigation with the Attorney General of Canada, RCMP National Headquarters and RCMP D Division in Winnipeg for offences potentially committed under the Criminal Code of Canada by the following:
Stan Struthers – Manitoba Minister of Finance;
Garth Rogerson – Chief Executive Officer, Red River Exhibition Association;
Angela Mathieson – former Secretary to the Community and Economic Development Committee of Cabinet;
David Miles – Chairman of the Manitoba Horse Racing Commission
Based on a supportive legal opinion provided by Hersh Wolch Q.C., a senior criminal lawyer and former federal prosecutor, the investigation, if the RCMP proceeds, would be in regard to an attempt by Garth Rogerson to acquire the MJC’s real estate asset (approximately valued at $70,000,000.00) through the use of confidential, cabinet privileged information and through access to Finance Minister Struther’s ability to manipulate the provincial budget for the purpose of bankrupting the Manitoba Jockey Club “by the end of March” if the MJC didn’t agree to the plan of Rogerson and Struthers, as stated by Rogerson in the Winnipeg Sun on January 31th, 2013.
The complaint concerns as yet unproven allegations relating to possible offences by Rogerson, Minister Struthers, Mathieson and Miles under the Criminal Code:
Section 122 – Breach of Trust by a Public Officer and; Sections 380(1) and (2) (Fraud) and/or conspiracy to commit these offences under section 465(1).
As stated in the Wolch opinion, “there is an overwhelming public interest in having these matters objectively subjected to a fair, impartial and unbiased police investigation.”
Assiniboia Downs is a half century old landmark entertainment facility and a major contributor to the Manitoba economy. It creates nearly 500 full-time jobs a year and has, over the past twenty years, contributed approximately $68 million in revenue to provincial coffers and the community.
Published in the Insider:
The non-profit Manitoba Jockey Club which operates Assiniboia Downs issued a press release yesterday which you can read here. In response to provincial government comments about the release, CEO Darren Dunn issued this statement:
Setting the record straight
While we believe it is important to not comment about matters before the courts, we have been made aware of false statements made by the province yesterday. I would like to set the record straight by telling you that Assiniboia Downs is 100 per cent funded by our patrons – so if Manitobans have never visited our venue, they have never provided financial support to us. We are an industry that creates tax dollars. We don’t spend them. In fact, all revenue for Assiniboia Downs is generated at Assiniboia Downs. Finally, the horse race industry provides full time employment for 500 Manitobans and has proudly contributed more than $68 million to government coffers and the community over the past 20 years. Our industry is about Tax Creation, Jobs, Agri-Business and Tourism.
March 30 2013- Wpg Free Press March 29 and 30th ...more articles
March 29, 2013 - An article was publish in the Winnipeg Sun "Manitoba Jockey Club suing Province over Assiniboia Downs takeover plan". You can read this article online if you check the Wpg Sun website and search "Manitoba Jockey Club"
March 12, 2013 - After attending a meeting with the full boards of the MJC, CTHS and HBPA we can advise:
The MJC will not be going with the Red River Ex Plan.
ASD will run a 60 day meet.
The Graded Purse Schedule remains the same as previously announced last fall.
There are no changes to Stakes/ Stakes Purses (other than slight re arrangement of running dates)
The MJC has a plan to address the long term future of the horse racing industry in Manitoba, and they look forward to presenting that in the near future.
Feb 9, 2013 - Recent articles in the Winnipeg Free Press have reported that the Red River Exhibition desires to assume control of Assiniboia Downs. HBPA President, Blair Miller has returned to Winnipeg and is looking into the matter. He will participate in further meetings February 10th and 11th. At an HBPA Board Meeting today, Blair announced, "As far as we know, it's Business as Usual."
As we gain information we will advise via our website.