Labor to support tens of thousands of jobs by making NSW the racing capital of the country

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NSW Labor today announced that it will make NSW the racing capital of the southern hemisphere while supporting tens of thousands of jobs – with Labor to cut wagering taxes for the NSW Racing Industry by 60 per cent to secure the long term future of the State’s racing industry.

NSW Opposition Leader Luke Foley was joined at Rosehill Racecourse by Labor candidate for Parramatta James Shaw, leading trainer Chris Waller and local racing staff to make the announcement.

Under Labor’s plan, the wagering taxes for the NSW racing industry will be brought into parity with Victoria from January 1 2016 – leading to a major investment in the local industry that will create and support racing jobs.

Mr Foley said Labor’s plan will create an additional 2000 racing jobs and support the 50,000 currently employed in the racing industry – many of which are based across western Sydney as well as rural and regional areas.

NSW racing currently pays the highest state tax in the country. Victoria currently imposes a tax of 7.6 per cent of gross returns, while NSW requires 19.11 per cent. This equates to a tax of $3.22 for every $100 on tote bets.

If elected, a Labor Government will reduce this rate, meaning the NSW Government will only take $1.28 for every $100 bet wagered – which would bring it in line with Victoria.

“I said on day one as Labor leader that I want to create jobs throughout the suburbs of Sydney and regions of NSW, so that people can get good jobs close to home,” Mr Foley said.

“This will see thousands of jobs created in the racing industry – and more importantly will support the 50,000 currently employed in our industry.

“I want to see the racing industry in our state grow with more jobs created – especially in western Sydney and regional towns across the State.

“This will allow our racing industry to increase prize money at every level – from Saturday metropolitan meetings right down to provincial and country race meetings.”

Mr Foley said Labor’s commitment will allow NSW racing to independently fund and develop their own major events, such as Sydney’s prestigious new autumn carnival The Championships.

Shadow Minister for Tourism, Major Events, Hospitality & Racing Steve Whan said the reform will greatly benefit rural and regional communities – with 55 per cent of the economic activity from the industry generated in regional NSW.

“The additional revenue will flow into investment in improving the position of racing, create and support racing jobs, ensure the viability of clubs and improve facilities,” Mr Whan said.

“These reforms will also spread benefits to other areas such as greyhounds and harness racing which will get a share of revenue under the existing inter-code agreement.”