|NTRA Update: October 7, 2004
Congress to Vote on Legislation Benefiting the Thoroughbred
At press time, federal legislation that would repeal the 30 percent alien-withholding
requirements and allow the domestic horseracing industry to further export
its product to foreign markets is up for a final vote by the U.S. House
and Senate. THE BILL IS EXPECTED TO GO TO THE HOUSE FLOOR TONIGHT AT 7:00
P.M. WITH THE TIME FOR THE SENATE DEBATE STILL TO BE DETERMINED.
The 30 percent withholding legislation is contained in the Foreign Sales
Corporation (FSC) bill.
The primary focus of the FSC legislation is to repeal subsidies for U.S.
exports that the World Trade Organization (WTO) has deemed illegal. Key
supporters of the Thoroughbred industry in Congress included language
in the bill that would eliminate the 30 percent withholding tax that foreigners
would pay on winnings for pari-mutuel wagers into U.S. pools. The 30 percent
withholding tax effectively precludes common-pooling by foreign countries
into U.S. wagering pools.
"Passage of our 30 percent withholding legislation would be a significant
step in expanding the international market for American Thoroughbred racing,"
said National Thoroughbred Racing Association Commissioner D.G. Van Clief,
The 30 percent withholding legislation has enjoyed bicameral, bipartisan
support from key members of Congress, including Senate Majority Whip Mitch
McConnell (R-KY), Senators Jim Bunning (R-KY) and Blanche Lincoln (D-AR)
as well as Representative Jim McCrery (R-LA).
NTRA officials expect that the elimination of the 30 percent withholding
tax will help open the $85 billion international market for horseracing
to U.S. common pooling. If 5 percent of that were to enter U.S. pools,
another $4.25 billion in handle and some $135 million in commissions (at
a 3 percent fee) would be realized by domestic racing interests.
In addition to eliminating the 30 percent withholding tax, there is another
benefit for the Thoroughbred industry. Should the FSC bill pass and the
provisions to which the WTO objects are repealed, retaliatory tariffs
imposed by the European Union will expire. The large list of products
to which the tariffs are applied includes Thoroughbreds. The tariffs began
in March at 5 percent and have increased 1 percent each month since. They
now stand at 11 percent and can go as high as 20 percent.
For updates on the NTRA’s legislative programs visit www.NTRAlegislation.com
or contact Joe Clabes at (800) 792-6872.
Breeders' Cup Ltd. & Post Time Technologies, Inc. Launch
Video Preview Web Site, Offer DVD Product
The National Thoroughbred Racing Association (NTRA), Breeders' Cup Limited
and Post Time Technologies Inc., announced today that some 80 key prep
races leading up to the Oct. 30 Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships
will be available for free viewing on the Internet via video streaming.
In addition, Breeders’ Cup Ltd. and Post Time Technologies Inc.
are offering a DVD containing these races for purchase by consumers.
The online content, accessible now by visiting www.racereplays.com,
www.ntra.com or www.breederscup.com,
will feature full video and audio of all 80 races. Results content is
provided by Equibase Company. Races have been selected based on their
perceived relevance to this year's Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships,
with new preps to be added to the Preview Web site through Oct. 11. All
replays can be accessed free of charge once users complete an online registration.
The DVD carries a retail price of $16.99 and is available through www.ntra.com
The DVD will feature more than 70 races run through October 3 and includes
the finishing order of each race. Consumers must order the DVD by October
20 to qualify for first-class postage, with overnight orders extending
through October 26.