LNP makes widespread promise for racing

The Queensland LNP opposition will restructure the state’s racing governing body with separate boards for each of the three codes and a country board, if elected in the state poll later this month.

The LNP matched a Labor Party promise with a $72.9 million plan to wholly finance country racing for the next four years.

It pledged a further $24 million in prize money and bonus payments for all racing as well as a restructure of the integrity body.

The LNP would also ensure the Albion Park harness and greyhound track remained as a rejuvenated racing precinct.

The commitments were part of a wide-ranging LNP racing policy released officially on Thursday.

The current Labor government scrapped the previous model for Racing Queensland, the racing codes’ governing body, which had boards for thoroughbreds, greyhounds and harness racing.

All those boards were sacked and replaced by a single governing board which had a representative from each of the codes but a majority of non-affiliated members.

The LNP will revert to the former structure but add a board to oversee country racing.

The plan also includes a We Love Country Racing campaign with an extra $15 million for infrastructure at country tracks.

A further $1 million has been committed to a tourism-based campaign around country racing in regional areas.

Shadow Racing Minister Jon Krause said consensus had emerged that the current governance model was broken and each code wanted to stand on its own two feet.

“Unlike Labor, we will work alongside the industry, not against them, because they want to see their sport thrive more than anyone else,” Krause said.

“We are falling further behind the big racing states of New South Wales and Victoria and it’s time we make the changes we need to grow the industry and compete with our interstate rivals.”

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