Horse racing facilities would spur statewide development, put Georgia in contention to host the Breeders’ Cup
State Sen. Brandon Beach (R-Alpharetta) today introduced the Rural Georgia Jobs and Growth Act, which will help to create thousands of jobs, bolster rural development and supplement education funding while boosting Georgia’s equine industry.
“This weekend, Georgia will host the pinnacle of football with Super Bowl LIII, as our state has clearly become a destination for events of the highest magnitude,” said Beach. “With the passage of the Rural Georgia Jobs and Growth Act, communities across the state will see new economic development, greater agribusiness success, millions of dollars in investment, as well as opportunities to host pinnacle equine events, including the Breeders’ Cup World Championships.
“With new equine facilities and the creation of the Georgia Horse Racing Commission, Georgia will see the creation of many new small businesses, including horse farms, auction houses and tourism offerings.
“Every year, millions of dollars leave Georgia for states with racetracks, as each racehorse can have a ripple effect of creating more than 20 jobs. This legislation provides my colleagues with a clear vision of the benefits of horse racing facilities, including new revenue streams to keep up with increasing demand for education funding.”
The president of the Georgia Horse Racing Coalition said his group is committed to building world-class facilities that will benefit the state and serve as an asset to local communities.
“The introduction of horse racing will stimulate Georgia’s equine industry, which has been an important part of our agricultural sector for many years but there is currently no incentive for breeders to raise their racehorses in our state,” said Dean Reeves, president of the Georgia Horse Racing Coalition. “We know from successes in other states that these facilities lead to new jobs and opportunities in the equine industry as well as unprecedented investment in rural communities. Our industry wants to be a part of a solution that gives rural Georgia an economic boost while also providing new revenues for the entire state for important initiatives including education.”
The Breeders’ Cup World Championships are the premier championship event of Thoroughbred racing with purses totaling more than $26 million. With the passage of the legislation, Georgia communities could be considered to permanently host the Breeders’ Cup. Recent economic studies estimated an economic impact of $60 million for the city selected to host the Breeders’ Cup.
The Rural Georgia Jobs and Growth Act will generate as much as $550 million initial investment without state investment or other state or local subsidized incentives.