Bad deal for local horsemen
I’ve been a supporter of the local horse industry all my life. It provides thousands of jobs, sustainable agriculture, and keeps our county beautiful.
When I found out the current table games bill would kill the local horse industry, I got mad enough to write this letter.
This is the worst bill I’ve ever seen. If our Legislature had passed this bill back in 1996 and given horsemen such a minuscule percentage, the Video Lottery referendum would have been soundly defeated. Tge VLT bill gives horsemen $14 per $100 of revenue. The table games bill gives them 60 cents. That’s outrageous. How are they supposed to make a living when the cost of everything keeps going up?
Back in 1996 Penn National said they were “committed to building thoroughbred racing … we’re not a casino.” We thought they were sincere.
Back then they promised our taxes wouldn’t go up if we voted in slots; my taxes went up 30 percent! Back then they told us a vote for video lottery was a vote for education. What did the teachers get?
I got news for everybody; they’ll promise anything to get us to vote “Yes,” but will our taxes go up again? How will our teachers benefit?
I guess Penn National has switched horses; now they are all about slots and atable gambling and are leaving horse racing in the dust. That’s their choice.
Our choice is clear; Vote “No.” Tell Charleston we don’t want table gaming at the expense of our local horse industry.