Good News: The Tucson City Council ban on steroids for racing greyhounds is official . Thanks to Councilman Kozachik for leading the way. Let’s hope Pima County makes the same strides in good judgment. Let’s hope there is a leader and animal lover among the Board of Supervisors to advocate for the health and safety of racing greyhounds.
Kudos to Tim Vanderpool of the Tucson Weekly for another hard-hitting story about the crap at the local Tucson dog track and all the tentacles attached to it including the hollow Arizona Department of Racing and the toxic bond between the City of South Tucson and some Pima County bureaucrats.
How many people will lose their jobs?
In previous media segments, the general manager & CEO repeatedly says that if the dog track closes 140 people will lose their jobs. That number is misleading.
In this past legislative session, a business bill was brought by Tucson Greyhound Park for the second year in a row. But in the 2012 session, the bill passed. The bill sponsors were Michelle Reagan & JD Mesnard. SB 1273 allows Tucson Greyhound Park to decouple after 100 race days. So far, 100 race days have come and gone since the bill was signed in May.
To decouple means the track could stay open without live dog racing and instead simulcast other races. Apache Greyhound Park in Apache Junction, AZ does just that.
If the track stayed open for simulcast, many people would still remain employed. Tucson Tails only wants the cruel “blood sport” of state sanctioned dog abuse to end. Gambling via simulcast? Have at it. Better yet, go to a Native American gaming casino where there is no gambling on blood sports and where no four-legged animals are injured, doped or die.
In a November 10, 2011 article in the El Independiente newspaper , TGP’s general manager said, “We have 135 employees, 65 percent of which are high school students.”
Let’s do the math: 65 percent of 135 employees are equal to 87.75. Let’s round up to 88 employees who are high school students, part-time after school. They don’t get unemployment benefits.
140 employees less 88 = 52 employees
Of the 52 employees, two are track veterinarians, working part-time; they both work at other vet practices. A third veterinarian is employed by the State, not the track.
52 less 3 = 49 employees
The kennel operators and kennel helpers are independent contractors not employees. If there are 9 kennels and approximately one dozen helpers, that’s approximately 21 people who won’t be getting unemployment benefits.
49 less 21 = 28 employees
According to the dog track website there is the director of racing, racing secretary, assistant racing secretary, programs manager, player development person, 3 track stewards (employed by the state not track), a chartwriter & data entry (2 people), a starter, weigh-in person, operator, and track announcer. Some of these people are part-time and have other day jobs. Most likely these 14 employees will lose their TGP jobs.
If the track remains open for simulcasting like the decoupling bill gives them the option to, people have jobs such as a food & beverage manager (1 person) plus servers; security guards; human resources manager/office manager (1 person); controller; plant maintenance operations; IT personnel; pari-mutuels managers & tellers.
As you can see 140 people will not lose their jobs and will not be getting on the unemployment rolls. Misleading.