Michigan Harness Horsemen's Association president Brett Boyd has written a letter to his constituency following the news that Gov. Rick Snyder was not going to sign a bill that would have allowed Instant Racing machines to be introduced at the state's racetracks. Without Snyder's signature the bill will be "pocket vetoed," meaning it will not go into law despite earlier passage by the state Senate and House.
Here is Boyd's letter:
I know that many of you might not have the strength to read another word about our business. We've battled and battled and written and called and written and called again. It all seems like such a waste on the heels of the Governors pocket veto and words about HB5546 last night. Like you, I'm exhausted and beat and I can't wait for the sleepless nights to end. Today was the first day in a very long time where I wanted to give up. I laid in bed mad and disappointed that we've come so far and it appears for nothing. Then my phone rang and it was Representative Kevin Daley. Mr. Daley has been an advocate for us for many years and with each passing day he has a greater appreciation for our struggle, our cry, our grit and, above all, our perseverance. His call reminded me that we do still have many friends in Lansing and that they are equally disappointed with the Governor's decision. Many of our friends in the Legislature are back in 2013 and they are very willing to try to find a solution for racing and our families.
I know well and good that we cannot pay bills on hope. We cannot pay bills on a chance. I know that every horsemen in Michigan is faced with a decision today—painful decisions that many, like me, have put off for days and years hoping for a new day. Those decisions have to be made and I wish you all the best. I too have to make a decision today. Walk away or continue the fight for a business I love and for many people I greatly respect.
My decision is to march on. I know that the words of Governor Snyder further jeopardize our families and farms, but this morning I will focus on what we have accomplished and the options that are still available to us. We rallied the Industry, we gathered the support of nearly 80% of the Legislature, and we came within a signature of reinventing our business model.
The one thing that I have learned through this entire process is that our Industry will not move forward without the graces of our Governor. We educated the Legislature and now it's to educate the Governor. I know that many of you have no fight left, but I'm asking you from the bottom of my heart to pick up your pen, pick up your phone, turn on your computer, and tell Governor Snyder your story. There are still many ways that he can help our Industry but he will never help someone who doesn't contact him. I'm sorry that our efforts have not created an immediate solution, but your efforts did make a difference. Before you make your decision on what to do next with your farm, horses, or family please write our Governor one more time. It may fall on deaf ears but it could be the letter that changes all of our lives!
Sincerely, Brett Boyd