Wednesday 23rd September 2009

Levy Board Maintains 2010 Expenditure At Agreed Levels

At its meeting today, the Levy Board discussed revised income forecasts for 2009 and subsequent years in the light of public announcements by various betting operators to move their internet sportsbooks off-shore, the effects of which are estimated to reduce annual levy yield by some £4m.

The Board agreed that:

(a) No material changes would be made to forecast expenditure in 2009
(b) There would be no change to previous expenditure decisions for 2010, although the position would be kept under regular review
(c) The Board’s allocation to prize money in 2010 would therefore remain at £57m.
(d) The Levy Board would achieve a balanced budget for 2011
(e) The Levy Board would continue with its work in developing recommendations for levy distribution from 2011 onwards, which should encompass all expenditure heads.

The Board also agreed to a request from Racing’s Representatives to contribute £200,000 in 2010 to the BHA’s Development Fund.

Robert Hughes, Chairman of the Levy Board, said:

“Board members have taken a prudent and measured approach to the short-term difficulties facing the Levy Board. I believe that we have struck the right balance between our fiduciary responsibilities and maintaining confidence and continuity for racing. Our contribution to the Development Fund, the importance of which is widely recognised, is an example of this.

“Going forward, it is more important than ever that Racing and Betting work together to focus on levy generation, which should also be a key task of the Racing For Change programme. Around the Board table there is a real willingness to look at ways to develop the sport’s attractiveness to the punter and I am confident that, as I pass on the Chairmanship to Paul Lee, Racing can continue to thrive.”