by Associated Press, 3/15/2001
BOSTON (AP) A proposal to cut racing taxes and increase
what the state pays to promote greyhound tracks would amount to an $8
million subsidy to track owners, anti-greyhound racing activists said
''This is the most obvious form of political
back-scratching,'' said Carey Theil of the group GREY2K, which sponsored
last year's ballot question banning greyhound racing. The measure was
Theil pointed to the $110,445 donated to lawmakers by
people working in the greyhound racing industry in the past three years.
During the same time, he said, the industry spent about $448,333
Track owners say they pay more taxes than many
businesses. Besides sales and corporate taxes, race tracks also pay
taxes on each race, according to Richard Dalton of the Wonderland
Greyhound Park in Revere.
''They are out and out lying. They are describing this
business as having a subsidy. We are a taxpaying industry,'' Dalton
One proposal on Beacon Hill would cut the tax on live
races from 5 percent to 2.75 percent, cut the tax on televised races
from 2.5 percent to .75 percent and increase state payments to greyhound
racing promotional and improvement funds from $1.3 million to $3.73
million, activists said.
Dalton said the industry itself has yet to agree on
their own proposal.
The industry is hoping to have a new law in place before
the end of June, when a law allowing betting on televised races, known
as ''simulcasting,'' expires.
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