The Indiana Standardbred Association (ISA) played host to the newest member of the Indiana State Representatives Monday, Jan. 2. Newly elected Kyle Pierce of the Indiana House District 36 was the special guest of several representatives of the ISA in a tour of facilities associated with Standardbred racing in the state before the latest legislative sessions gets underway Monday, January 9, 2023. The session will include verbiage and a bill on i-Gaming, which could have a direct impact on horse racing.
Pierce, a Republican, resides in Anderson, Ind. and will represent the Madison County area encompassed in District 36 which stretches through Anderson and to the East and then the South below Markleville, Ind. However, the new redistricting does not include Pendleton and areas west of Anderson. Pierce replaces longtime incumbent Terri Austin, who was a champion for Standardbred racing during her 20-plus year reign in the State Legislature.
Pierce was interested in learning more about the Standardbred industry and its impact on the state’s economy. He accompanied Adam Kallick, lobbyist for the Indiana Standardbred Association, Emily Dever, Secretary for the ISA Board, Ernie Gaskin, ISA Board Member, and Tony Renz, Executive Director of the ISA during the tour.
The farm tour began at Pace Setter Farm where Pierce saw the impact on local agri-business and the growth around Madison County directly related to horse racing. Pace Setter Farm is only one of more than a dozen locations that have been created due to harness racing at nearby Harrah’s Hoosier Park.
From there, the group stopped by New Wave Equine and spoke with owner Brian Hauck and toured his facility. Representative Pierce learned about the different kinds of businesses linked to racing and the necessity to continue support of the entire industry and its importance and affects on the economy in Indiana.
Pierce was also brought up to date on the new economic impact study recently completed by Purdue University, which further shows the significance of horse racing on the state’s fiscal operations. The latest study identifies horse racing attributes nearly $2 billion annually to the agri-business in the state. More details on the economic impact and additional statistical support will be released soon.