Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Double Error

It's rare to see. A politician admitting a mistake, but we had that today. Minister of Ag in Ontario Ted McMeekin said this to a Hamilton paper.
  • McMeekin admitted his government "dropped the ball" on horse racing and stated that he hoped that the Liberals would be "A little bit more collaborative then we’ve been. And that we’ll listen better than we have. 
Now, for the first time, I think everyone agrees this was handled poorly. You can't throw an industry on a lagging breeding cycle under the bus in one year, no matter how broke your government is.

The second error comes from us, racing itself. This government study was published from stakeholders meetings since 2010. Items in it were talked about for well before that. It said:
  • The Slots at Racetracks Program limits OLG’s flexibility to locate gaming facilities near OLG customers. Furthermore, the formula restricts OLG’s ability to maximize revenues for key government priorities. As such, the Slots at Racetracks Program should be drawn to a close. 
Just like the government, horse racing "dropped the ball" as well. This, in tandem, is why racing is where its at today.

Racing has little control over what a government does with a final new policy but it has control over what it does to help shape it beforehand. Taking responsibility for this is important and other jurisdictions should be preparing for it now. 

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