100 non-TAB racing clubs will see an injection of $70 million over four years if Labor is re-elected as the promises flow in the run up to the November 25 poll.
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk says the new government promise is in response to feedback from country racing stakeholders and industry participants.
Currently country racing faces an approximate $12 mill a year shortfall, receiving about $5m a year in government funds, and leaving the rest to be provided by Racing Queensland which it is meant to fund from larger turnover in bigger city and provincial race meetings.
Central West Racing Association President and country racing board member Gary Peoples says the announcement is welcomed and he’s calling on the LNP to at least match the offer.
“We’ve been working for some time to security of future of country racing. This package is fantastic and recognises country racing’s place in bush communities.”
More than 1850 regional Queenslanders rely on the racing industry for full-time employment, with country racing contributing $225m to the state economy.
Racing Minister Grace Grace says an economic impact study by economic researcher IER has found racing contributed $1.2 billion to the Queensland economy, with more than 47 per cent of economic impact benefiting regional Queensland.
“Of the 845,000 people who attended race meetings, 69 per cent were in regional areas, demonstrating the fact that racing is deeply woven into the social fabric of regional Queensland.”