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Bill on Greyhound Racing Being Drafted at Statehouse

Greyhound racing

A bill is being drafted at the Iowa Statehouse to separate greyhound racing from the two casinos that no longer want to support it.  Host Clay Masters spoke with Senator Jeff Danielson of Cedar Falls, who says the agreement provides both a "soft landing" and a "second chance" for the greyhound industry.  That means breeders who want to quit breeding dogs for racing can receive a payout, and the Iowa Greyhound Association will get a chance to manage a track for themselves.  Currently casino revenues in Dubuque and Council Bluffs have been supplementing the purses paid at the tracks.  Danielson, who is Chair of the State Government Committee, says a thoughtful process for phasing out support from the casinos is preferable to allowing failure of the greyhound racing industry.  He says the Waterloo Greyhound Park is still sitting vacant in his district, a looming example of what can happen when facilities close.  And he says the lifespan of the animals currently racing needs to be considered, so no-kill adoption groups will get a share of the casino payout.  Language is being drafted for a bill to be brought to Danielson's committee.

Masters also speaks to Brian Sickel, General Manager of the Knoxville Raceway and Senator Bill Dotzler, a Democrat from Waterloo about tax incentives being provided to Iowa racetracks.

Katherine Perkins is IPR's Program Director for News and Talk