Maryland Horse Industry Board

Maryland Horse Industry Board410-841-5861www.mda.state.md.us/horseboard/ November 2007

 

What IS The Maryland Horse Industry Board?

Chapter 416, Acts of 1998 defined six statutory duties of the Maryland Horse Industry Board which include licensing and inspecting horse stables in the State, advising the MDA on matters affecting the horse industry, and supporting research, education, and promotion of the Maryland horse industry.

The MHIB continues to conduct projects for the benefit of the horse industry utilizing a specially funded source. The Board continues to achieve all of its legislatively mandated functions. The main challenges for the Board include:

• finalizing the Maryland Horse Park Project, through the selection of a final location and commencing construction, as well as the completion of the BWI Thurgood Marshall Animal Import and Export Feasibility Study;

• raising enough funds to cover the cost of conducting a census in 2009 and economic impact report on the status of the Maryland horse industry. The approximate $180,000 is beyond the current budget of the MHIB. The information from a equine census and economic impact report will provide vital analysis related to the Maryland horse industry including the perceived, but as of yet unstudied, decline in Maryland’s racing and breeding sectors;

• the limited budget for the promotion of the Maryland horse industry with a budget of less than $120,000 (including staffi ng), of which approximately $115,000 is brought in as funds directly from the horse industry, which does not include revenue generated from the Maryland horse industry by other sections of the MDA;

• the loss of revenue, horse businesses, and horses from the breeding and racing sectors of the Maryland horse industry due to an uneven economic playing field which has been created by the installation of slot machines in neighboring states’ race tracks.

As the commodity board for the Maryland horse industry, the board hopes to continue to develop the success of the recreational horse industry and to work to reestablish the prominence of the Maryland horse racing and breeding industries.

 

Key Accomplishments in Fiscal Years 2006 - 2007

Completed Feasibility Study for the Maryland Horse Park This would essentially be a large scale market for Maryland equine goods, and services as well as an attraction for increased business, media attention, and marketability of Maryland’s equine industry. The establishment of a Maryland Horse Park would generate more than $123 million dollars a year in economic impact on the local and state economy, over 1,900 new jobs, and millions of dollars in annual tax revenue from tourists. This project was one of the original missions of the MHIB and will remain as such until its completion. The project was highlighted in the Governor’s transition report as an important project for the future of the industry. While the MHIB selected not to pursue a long-term lease on the property in Gambrills, the Board intends to work on its establishment at another site to be determined.

In conjunction with MDA, obtained Federal and State funds for feasibility study of an animal Import/Export Facility

As international marketing eff orts continue to attract foreign buyers to the Maryland market and the increasing popularity of Maryland horse competitions, there is an increased need to improve the quarantine and transportation options in the Mid-Atlantic region. Th e installation of an animal export and import facility associated with the Baltimore- Washington International Airport (BWI) would enhance the potential of the equine industry thereby preserving working lands by reducing transportation costs, enhancing the marketability of Maryland horses to foreign buyers, and improving access to instate events, all of which contribute to the viability of this industry. In addition to the international marketing eff ort as a driving force for the exportation of Maryland-bred horses for sale to other countries, Maryland horse people, particularly in the sport horse industry, are importing thousands of horses each year. An import/ export facility would continue to solidify Maryland as a national and international hub of equine business and would provide

1,900 new jobs, and millions of dollars in annual tax revenue from tourists. This project was one of the original missions of the MHIB and will remain as such until its completion. The project was highlighted in the Governor’s transition report as an important project for the future of the industry. While the MHIB selected not to pursue a long-term lease on the property in Gambrills, the Board intends to work on its establishment at another site to be determined. In conjunction with MDA, obtained Federal and State funds for feasibility study of an animal Import/Export Facility As international marketing eff orts continue to attract foreign buyers to the Maryland market and the increasing popularity of Maryland horse competitions, there is an increased need to improve the quarantine and transportation options in the Mid-Atlantic region. The installation of an animal export and import facility associated with the Baltimore- Washington International Airport (BWI) would enhance the potential of the equine industry thereby preserving working lands by reducing transportation costs, enhancing the marketability of Maryland horses to foreign buyers, and improving access to instate events, all of which contribute to the viability of this industry. In addition to the international marketing eff ort as a driving force for the exportation of Maryland-bred horses for sale to other countries, Maryland horse people, particularly in the sport horse industry, are importing thousands of horses each year. An import/ export facility would continue to solidify Maryland as a national and international hub of equine business and would provide a strong infrastructure for the growth and development of numerous support service businesses.

 

Assisted various divisions of MDA with implementation of policies, statues and regulations

Sections of the MDA which have been assisted by the MHIB include but are not limited to Resource Conservation, Nutrient Management, Agricultural Land Preservation, Animal Health, National and International Marketing, and the Office of the Secretary.

 

Began meetings of the Equine Health Advisory Committee

This committee was established to: Advise the MHIB on matters of equine health and disease in the State; Ensure the establishment and implementation of eff ective industry and community communication vehicles; and Review and advise on: Maryland policies and protocols regarding reportable diseases; Maryland statutes and regulations relating to equine health; Interstate health requirements; Capabilities of Maryland State Animal Health Diagnostic Laboratories; and Emergency preparedness protocols.

Listed below are relevant statistics from the past three fiscal years:
Category Year 2005 Year 2006 Year 2007
Number of stable licenses issued 473 463 528
Number of inspections performed
annually
495 468 440**
Revenue collected from assessment
based on tons of horse feed sold in
Maryland, at $2 a ton
$91,826 $108,356* $79,155***
External funds committed to MHIB
projects including the Maryland
Horse Park, and BWI feasibility
studies
$3,250 $227,500 $63,750
Promotional, educational, or research
projects off ered to Maryland horse
industry
2 3 4
Total amount of money distributed
as grants for promotional,
educational, or research projects for
the Maryland horse industry
$22,952 $35,721 $20,916
Staff ed booths or presented talks at
trade shows, conferences, fair and
exhibitions promoting Maryland
equine
12 20 12

* Increase due to adjustment made to budgetary cycle. Previously the April 1st through June 30th feed fund assessment quarterly payment, had been counted in the following fiscal year as the payment was due by July 30th, this quarterly payment will now be considered as revenue from the fiscal year it was obtained.
** In 2007 our inspection numbers were down due to inspectors' absence due to illness. Starting in 2007 as a result of a new statute which has adjusted mandatory inspection requirements from annual to biennial inspection, the Board will begin to focus on the quality of inspection as opposed to the quantity of inspections.
*** Not all revenue had been received as of reporting deadline.

This column is sponsored by the Maryland Horse Industry Board. The views expressed herein are those of the author and arenot necessarily those of The Equiery’s publisher or staff.

 

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