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Author: Editor

Fair Hill $250,000 Bond Bill

On Sat. March 11, legislators in both houses heard bond bills which would help fund improvements to the equestrian facilities at Fair Hill, which is owned and managed by the Maryland Department of Natural Resources. Senate Bill 708 and House Bill 977 would authorize the creation of a State Debt not to exceed $250,000, the proceeds to be used as a grant to The National Steeplechase Foundation, Inc. for the acquisition, planning, design, construction, repair, renovation, reconstruction, site improvement, and capital equipping of the Fair Hill Race Course. If passed, NSF would be required to acquire matching funds. The...

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WANTED: Outstanding Trail Projects For National Awards

The Coalition for Recreational Trails, a federation of national and regional trail-related organizations, is pleased to announce its 2017 achievement awards to recognize outstanding trail projects funded by the national Recreational Trails Program (RTP). The awards will be presented in Washington, D.C. during Great Outdoors Month® on June 14, 2017 as part of the Coalition’s ongoing effort to build awareness and appreciation of this highly successful program, which has greatly enhanced the quantity and quality of trail experiences available to the public. The awards ceremony will be on Capitol Hill with Members of Congress helping to the outstanding achievements...

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Mucking for Gold

A bill not likely to pop up on the average horse person’s radar, but one that could have a subtle yet profound impact on the horse industry, is Senate Bill 99 and it cross-filed cousin House Bill 171. With the cumbersome and decidedly non-sexy title of “Environment: Yard Waste, and Food Residuals, and Other Organic Materials Diversion and Infrastructure – Study,” why would any horse person pay attention to this bill? And what does this bill do? In essence, this bill requires the Department of the Environment to consult with certain entities (including the Maryland Horse Council) and to...

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Annapolis Update: Bills that Could Affect Your Horse World

The Maryland legislative session is now hot and heavy. Over 2,600 bills have been filed, and things are moving fast, with hearings, motions, amendments, and crossovers. In the updates below, The Equiery uses the following terms with the associated meanings: “Stalled” or “stalled out” can refer to bills that has had hearings weeks ago but no action has happened, or it can refer to bills that have been filed but have yet to receive a hearing, and at this late date are unlikely to have a hearing. This is one way a bill can die in committee, without overtly...

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Worcester plans to include Bridle Trails in Ilia Fehrer Natural Preserve

The 437-acre Ilia Fehrer Nature Preserve, just outside of Berlin, was acquired by Worcester County in 2011 with the assistance of state and federal partners as well as from The Trust for Public Land. The property is located within the 4,000-acre Holly Grove Swamp area and contains the largest section of unprotected forestland in the county, and the county is in the process of creating a stewardship plan, a plan which is to include passive recreational use – such as trail riding. A draft of the plan will be presented to the Worcester County Commissioners in March. After the...

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Racing’s Equine Medical Director: Victim of Legislative Chaos?

by Frank Vespe; originally appeared on theracingbiz.com; reprinted and reposted with permission of Frank Vespe Legislation that would have created an equine medical director position in Maryland has been withdrawn, victim to the fast-moving chaos of the legislative session. The bill, supporters decided, was “untimely,” as Maryland Jockey Club (MJC) president Sal Sinatra termed it. The MJC, Maryland Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association, and Maryland Horse Breeders Association, as well as the state’s Standardbred interests, all were on board. But the bill became untimely in the face of a proposal to take millions of dollars out of racing industry purses. With...

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