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Dec. 5 gaming vote is about jobs for Jefferson County

By Staff | Nov 20, 2009

To those who attended the NAACP forum on table game this past week, you know how I feel about the debate going on in this county over table games. It bothers me that a handful of horsemen have decided that this issue is about them, not realizing the harm they are causing the rest of this community. Not to mention their diregard for the fact that the three major racing industry groups (Charles Town HBPA, West Virginia Breeders Association and the West Virginia Breeders’ Classics) have all endorsed table games.

But the vote on Dec. 5 isn’t just about us horsemen. We are fortunate to be where we are today because of the success of racing and slots at the track. The vote on Dec. 5 is about jobs. Every job in this county counts: from the guys who sweep the tickets after race day to the lady who prints the paychecks every week. Jobs put food on the table and a roof over many heads. Schools educate our children and grandchildren and what table games will do for our schools cannot be ignored.

As a man who grew up in this county, son of a business owner and a business owner myself, I have seen firsthand when our neighbors have fallen on hard times. We have compassion in the county and we don’t judge a person on how much money they make or what their job title is – everyone wants to be treated with dignity and they should.

My life has not been as a horseman, it is an industry I have enjoyed in retirement. But there are many others in this county that have depended on the racing industry their whole lives. These are their jobs whether they are a walker, a groomer, a trainer or breeder. Dec. 5 is about protecting these and many other jobs in this county with the hops that we can make this place even better than it is today: for all of us.

Vote “yes” on Dec. 5.

Larry Fritts

Charles Town