Mark McGowan

Mark McGowan

Minister for Education and Training; South West

    Racing industry to share in additional infrastructure funding

    1/09/2005 12:00 AM

    The Western Australian racing industry is set to benefit from a further injection of $5million to upgrade racing industry infrastructure throughout regional areas of the State, Racing and Gaming Minister Mark McGowan announced today.

    Mr McGowan said the State Government’s initial regional racing infrastructure grants program of $20million over two years had been extended to $25million over three years, with a further injection of $5million by Racing and Wagering Western Australia (RWWA).

    “The State Government committed to spend $20million on racetrack infrastructure over two years at a number of priority regional venues as part of an election commitment,” he said.

    “This additional funding by RWWA is fantastic news, particularly for the smaller racing clubs such as Broome, Esperance, Carnarvon, Narrogin, Kellerberrin and Port Hedland that were not included in the original proposal but which will now have access to funding.

    “The additional money will also allow RWWA to fund a number of whole-of-industry initiatives that will benefit racing clubs collectively, including a mobile big screen, race day event support material such as marquees, mobile betting vans, new oncourse tote facilities and digital vision capabilities.”

    Mr McGowan said the State Government’s contribution to the infrastructure package was focussed on the regions.

    “Regional racing clubs are often an integral part of a town’s economic and social network,” he said.

    “I am aware many clubs are run down and in need of refurbishment or upgrade.

    “Our infrastructure package will help many clubs improve their facilities, which will lead to an increase in attendance and a subsequent boost to jobs and opportunities for locals.”

    RWWA will also spend about $9million on metropolitan tracks over the next three years, bringing the total commitment to improving racecourse infrastructure in the State over that period to $34million.

    “This level of capital investment in the racing industry is unprecedented and reflects the commitment of the Government to building a strong and vibrant industry,” Mr McGowan said.

    The Minister also said he had recently signed off on RWWA’s Strategic Development Plan, confirming record distribution of $81million to the racing clubs for the 2005-06 racing year.

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