Wednesday 16th February 2011

Government Appointed Members Welcome Secretary of State’s Determination of the 50th Levy Scheme

Paul Lee, Penny Boys and Paul Darling, the three Government Appointed Members of the Horserace Betting Levy Board, today welcomed the Determination of the 50th Levy Scheme by the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport, Jeremy Hunt.

The Secretary of State has accepted the fundamental principle of a target levy yield range as outlined by the Government Appointed Members in their submission to him. Based on current assumptions, the Scheme is forecast to yield in the range of £73.7m to £80.8m, funded by an increase in the headline rate from 10% to 10.75% and a reduction in thresholds from £88,740 to £50,000. The 50th Scheme will continue to be based only on British horserace betting business.

Levy Board Chairman and senior Government Appointed Member Paul Lee said:

“I am pleased that the rationale set out in our submission has received recognition and support from the Secretary of State. The Determination represents a significant increase on the estimated 49th yield which, in the circumstances, we believe is fair and reasonable.

“Government has previously stated its desire not to be part of the Determination process in the future, and today’s announcement provides the foundations for a longer term discussion in which the Levy Board will continue to play a leadership role.

“The Determination gives a very clear signal as to Government’s position and all parties will now wish to reflect carefully on what the Secretary of State has said.

“The Board will give initial consideration to the impact of the Scheme at its March meeting but there should be no assumption of any changes being made to the agreed 2011 budget. The full outturn of the 49th Scheme will not be known until June 2011.”