Horse racing betting rising again in New Jersey
New Jersey’s three horse racing tracks are already benefiting from new government subsidies that will pump $100 million into the industry over the next five years.
Monmouth Park, Meadowlands and Freehold Raceway have struggled to compete with other tracks that have casinos on site, but the influx of cash is helping them to battle back.
The tracks had been eager to see the bill passed after it was first proposed and for more information click here to read about how it is structured.
Governor Phil Murphy signed the new law back in February which puts aside $20 million per year to give the tracks the chance to grow their respective businesses.
Alfred Ochsner, the Executive Administrator of the Standardbred Breeders and Owners Association of New Jersey, says the money has already started to have an impact in the area.
“Last year we had six stallions in the state, this year we have 15 stallions that have come into the state just by the fact that people heard they were going to get the appropriation,” he told NJTV.
The introduction of new stallions is a major boost to the state that had suffered a huge downturn in horse numbers over the past few years.
According to the latest US Department of Agriculture Census, the horse and pony population dropped by over 15 percent from 2012 to 2017.
The state’s withdrawal of subsidies back in 2011 that was used to bolster horse racing purses was cited as the main contributory factor, but the introduction of the new law is expected to reverse this trend.
With New Jersey also benefiting from the recent legalization of sports betting, the industry is well-placed to kick-on over the next few years.
Horse racing in the state dates back to the 1800s and is one of the most important businesses in the area from an economic standpoint.
Douglas Fisher, Secretary of the New Jersey Department of Agriculture, believes the introduction of the new bill is the shot in the arm horse racing needed.
“It’s not little business, it is big business,” he said. “It provides thousands of jobs – hundreds of millions of dollars if not billions of dollars of activity.”