Florida Horsemen Collaborating on Economic Impact Study

After the Ky. Equine Survey results were released, Florida horsemen are collaborating on their own study.
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In the wake of the release of complete results from the 2012 Kentucky Equine Survey, horsemen in Florida are collaborating on their own economic impact study.

The Florida Horsemen’s Benevolent and Protective Association (HBPA) said it has joined the Florida Thoroughbred Breeders’ and Owners’ Association, Florida Quarter Horse Racing Association, and Florida Quarter Horse Breeders’ and Owners’ Association to produce the study. Industry participants must complete a survey by Sept. 20.

"Kentucky’s horse industry reported (Sept. 6) that it produces a $3 billion annual economic impact," Florida HBPA executive director Kent Stirling said. "For years, Florida has ranked right along with Kentucky among the top three states as economic drivers in the industry—there’s a reason Ocala is known as the ‘Horse Capital of the World,’ and South Florida is hailed as the road to the Kentucky Derby."

The Florida HBPA said the groups want to "ensure that the impact of Florida’s horse racing industry professionals is well-represented as the Florida legislature conducts a first-ever comprehensive evaluation of pari-mutuel and gaming laws

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Tom LaMarra, a native of New Jersey and graduate of Rutgers University, has been news editor at The Blood-Horse since 1998. After graduation he worked at newspapers in New Jersey and Pennsylvania as an editor and reporter with a focus on municipal government and politics. He also worked at Daily Racing Form and Thoroughbred Times before joining The Blood-Horse. LaMarra, who has lived in Lexington since 1994, has won various writing awards and was recognized with the Old Hilltop Award for outstanding coverage of the horse racing industry. He likes to spend some of his spare time handicapping races.

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