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Is Industry Getting Value for Money?

The Tasmanian Greens today again called into question the viability of Tasracing and its ability to grow the racing industry in Tasmania.

Greens Racing spokesperson Kim Booth MP raised the matter in Parliament and called on the Minister for Racing, the Hon. Bryan Green MP, to not throw anymore taxpayer dollars at the struggling GBE and instead to require Tasracing to work to stand on its own two feet.

“The Minister continues to advocate for Tasracing, however the fact that almost another half a million dollars is to be thrown at the failing GBE this year indicates that the Board are not succeeding in their endeavours to grow the industry,” Mr Booth said.

“Over and over I’m having industry stalwarts communicating their concerns to my office regarding the lack of weight Tasracing places on the opinions of long-time industry players, and given it is once again requiring more funds from the State shows that the Minister needs to urgently look into Tasracing’s performance.”

“While the purpose of the 20 year funding deed between the State government and Tasracing was to provide certainty to the industry, the industry itself is not the problem.  Tasracing and its out-of-touch Board need to be scrutinised to establish why more than $29m of public money is now required each year for them to grow and promote racing in Tasmania.”

Text of Motion tabled by Kim Booth MP:

That this House; 

1. Notes despite the Minister for Racing, the Hon. Bryan Green MP, continually assuring the House that while the racing industry will be grown, it is in fact struggling to survive;

2. Notes further the Minister’s protests in this House that Tasracing “is not a failed experiment”;

3. Take on board representations from industry members in their respective electorates regarding concerns about the way in which Tasracing is managing the racing industry in Tasmania;

4. Notes the reported drop in nominations for the Launceston Greyhound meet this week;

5. Notes further the Devonport Harness Racing Club’s intention to no longer hold harness races on the $11.5m taxpayer-funded synthetic track at Spreyton;

6. Notes further the reported disagreement by Dr Elliot Forbes, Chief Executive of Tasracing, and his comments that no decision has yet been made regarding whether or not harness racing will be held at the Spreyton track in future;

7. Recognises that this is yet another example of the board of Tasracing failing to engage with industry members and stakeholders; and

Further, that this House:

8. Calls on the Minister for Racing not to throw anymore taxpayer dollars at Tasracing, but instead to require the Government Business Enterprise to manage the funds it already has allocated, to listen to members of the racing industry, and for the GBE to more effectively run the industry in order for it to grow and succeed.