Pa. horse racing industry up, say officials

    As the Rendell Administration prepares to leave office, officials are touting casino gambling as a success when it comes to boosting the state’s horse racing industry.

     

    Agriculture Secretary Russell Redding says 44,000 racing jobs have been created since the industry started getting 12 percent of slots revenue in 2006.

     

    He notes Pennsylvania breeding is up 10 percent during a national downward trend, and says the racing benefits trickle down.

     

    “You get that long-term growth of the equine industry that everybody says they wanted,” said Redding.  “We’re beginning to see the results now.”

     

    During last year’s debate over legalizing table games, racing officials said they were worried poker and blackjack tables would take money away from slot machines and hurt racing revenue.

     

    November and October’s slot revenue was up from 2009 figures, however.

     

    Pennsylvania made $61million from gaming last month, compared to $56 million in November 2009.

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