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Agriculture Committee hears from horse industry

Agriculture Committee hears from horse industry

Credit: AP

** RETRANSMISSION FOR ALTERNATE CROP ** Shackleford (5), ridden by Jesus Castanon, moves through the finish line to win the 136th Preakness Stakes horse race at Pimlico Race Course, Saturday, May 21, 2011, in Baltimore. Animal Kingdom, behind, ridden by John Velazquez, took second place. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)

by AP

WHAS11.com

Posted on January 18, 2012 at 2:15 PM

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) -- Racing industry spokesmen have told a House committee that Kentucky's horse industry is in crisis and casino-style racing could help it.
   Democratic state Rep. Susan Westrom of Lexington invited the men to share their observations on Tuesday with the state House Agriculture and Small Business Committee.
   Westrom said that in five years, thoroughbred racing and breeding has gone from being a $7 billion to a $4 billion industry.
   Bob Feenick, an equine banker and senior vice president for PBI Bank in Lexington, said he has many customers who are struggling. He said Kentucky is losing business to states like New York and Pennsylvania that allow casino-style gambling at tracks.
   David England, a trainer, said some of his owners won't race their horses in Kentucky because the purses are not competitive.

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