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Minister Doyle brings 'The General Scheme of the Greyhound Industry Bill 2018' before Government

Minister of State Andrew Doyle, who has special responsibility for the Greyhound sector, brought legislation to government today to improve governance and tighten regulation in the greyhound racing sector.

Speaking after Cabinet, Minister for State Doyle said “I believe that this Bill will provide a sound framework for improved governance and regulation in the greyhound sector, and that it addresses issues raised in a number of reports on the sector. The Bill went through pre-legislative scrutiny in 2017 and, where appropriate, the matters identified as part of that process have been incorporated into the revised General Scheme. The Cabinet has given its approval to have General Scheme drafted into a Bill and my Department will publish the draft scheme on its website for the information of stakeholders with an interest in the sector”.

The draft Bill addresses governance issues in Bord na gCon, strengthens regulatory controls in the industry, updates racing sanctions and improves overall integrity. It includes the welfare of greyhounds as one of the statutory functions of Bord na gCon and provides it with powers to make regulations in relation to anti-doping, administration and traceability for both integrity and welfare purposes.

The Heads reflect recommendations for legislative change made in the Indecon Report, the Greyhound Report of the Joint Committee on Agriculture, Food and the Marine and in the Morris Review of Anti-Doping and Medication.

Minister Doyle added “I believe that the future of the greyhound sector is now much brighter with the sale of Harold’s Cross lifting the burden of debt from Bord na gCon and allowing for investment in stadia and other infrastructure. That future is dependent on a strong governance platform and on the industry having the highest standards of integrity and welfare founded on a strong regulatory system. The provision of a strong legal framework will support the development of the greyhound racing sector in Ireland and ultimately provide a platform to improve its contribution to the economy and employment”.

ENDS

Date Released: 15 May 2018