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SBOANJ recaps Monday’s annual meeting

November 17, 2020
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On Monday executive administrator Al Ochsner hosted the Standardbred Breeders and Owners Association of New Jersey’s annual meeting along with president Mark Ford and the board of directors. For the first time ever, the meeting was held virtually online, and streamed live on Facebook.

The meeting opened with messages from Ford and Ochsner.

Ford mentioned that the SBOANJ is now a member of the newly formed North American Harness Horse Alliance. They both thanked the SBOANJ staff, all those involved with the Rutgers Risk Management Plan to enable racing to resume, the tracks and training centers that hosted dozens of qualifiers, and those who have reached out to help others during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Ochsner addressed the cancellation of the golf outing which is the main source of revenue for TrotPAC, the SBOANJ’s Political Action Committee. He thanked all those members that helped continue fundraising capabilities to support legislators. That support along with the completion of the 2019 NJ Horse Racing Impact Study that was sent to all state legislators really made a difference in the state approving the appropriation funding for 2021. He also applauded Sam Landy’s son, Harry, for making a great and informative video of the Standardbred business, in an effort to bring attention to the need for the appropriation funding.

The SBOANJ has been working since 2016 to reduce the driver workmen’s compensation insurance premium at both race tracks. Finally, NJRC established the Standardbred premium to be based on the number of claims and the money associated with them. For many years the Standardbreds had low claims or none at all but had to share a much higher premium with the Thoroughbreds. In 2020, because of the adjustment and cash reserve available, no money was needed to pay the cost of insurance. Plus, there is a cash reserve to carry forward.

Plans have been made with Freehold Raceway to have two memorial races for the Fusco family and Harold Kelly in December and January.

The SBOANJ and BCAP presented four scholarships to SBOANJ members’ children totaling $9,000.

The 2021 racing dates were announced; The Meadowlands will race 90 dates and Freehold Raceway will race 82 dates.

The Breeding Committee reported that the breeding industry in New Jersey has shown gains for the third year in a row. There were 279 mares bred in 2017 and 780 bred in 2020.

The Insurance Committee reported another year without an increase to the insurance premiums for the 14th year in a row.

The Finance and Pension Committee is very pleased with the investment policies at this time and continues to review UBS performances. They reported the investments to be good, relative to benchmarks, especially during these uncertain times. (SBOANJ)

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