NSW GWIC seek expanded licensed participant base & data sharing powers

Industry Update

The NSW Government and NSW Greyhound Welfare and Integrity Commission (GWIC) are embarking on the next phase of the NSW greyhound comeback since the Baird Government misstep which sought to ban NSW greyhound racing.

To continue the NSW greyhound industry reform, the NSW Office of Racing have drafted a “new” set of laws known as the Greyhound Racing Regulation 2019. The 2019 version supersedes the Greyhound Racing Regulation 2018 laws which were largely transitional in nature and supported the operation of the Greyhound Racing Act 2017, which comprised many of the recommendations of the Greyhound Industry Reform Panel.

Among a raft of changes, the Office of Racing and GWIC are seeking to include a proposal to increase the registered participant base to include all greyhound “checkers”, “muscle men”, or “greyhound chiropractors” who are not licensed veterinarians; all race club and trial track staff and helpers; greyhound syndicators and promoters who don’t have ownership in the greyhounds; and anyone who manages or performs an administrative role for any greyhound they do not own.

To offset the increase in the registered participant headcount, the registration period will be increased from one year to three years, meaning annual licensing or registration renewals will become a thing of the past. GWIC would also seek to designate participant only areas at greyhound race tracks and trial tracks where entry will only be permissible to registered participants.

Coupled with the changes are legislated data sharing agreements which will allow GWIC to share information with the RSPCA, the Animal Welfare League, the Australian Tax Office (ATO), the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC), Local Councils, and any other government sector agency of the State or the Commonwealth, which would include agencies such as Centrelink.

Other changes include reforms to registration of greyhound trial tracks and their staff, individual race club registration; and the requirement to keep a greyhound registered until it dies or it is registered under the Companion Animals Act.

The 2019 reforms propose that GWIC will keep all registers of greyhounds, the expanded greyhound racing participant base, trials tracks, and race clubs. The register may include any information related to the greyhounds or participants circumstance or history that GWIC determine appropriate; and that information will be available to any person or other approved body who may request access to it.

As a result of the proposed Greyhound Racing Regulations, GWIC will be obliged to include the following information in the Commission’s annual reports :

  • Summary of GWIC’s strategic plan
  • Number of greyhounds registered
  • Number of participants
  • Number of trial tracks
  • Number of race related greyhound injuries
  • Greyhound trial tracks that had their registrations suspended or cancelled
  • Summary of disciplinary actions
  • Summary of inquiries conducted including outcomes
  • Details of internal reviews

GRNSW will be required to ensure their annual reports include:

  • A summary of the minimum standards applicable to the way GRNSW conduct races and greyhound race meetings
  • Number of greyhound race clubs
  • Summary of their strategic plan
  • Details of registrations that were suspended or cancelled
  • Disciplinary action taken by GRNSW
  • Greyhound adoption programs (GAP) managed or supported by GRNSW
  • Number of greyhounds adopted
  • Number of greyhound race meetings and greyhound races conducted
  • Number of greyhound race starters

New compulsory penalty guidelines are also proposed that would impose set monetary fines ranging from $275 through to $5,500 per offence for breaches of different sections of the Act.

Before the proposed Greyhound Racing Regulation 2019 can be made law, a formal consultation process must occur and the Office of Racing have made the proposed reforms public and invited feedback. That feedback must be made though the appropriate channels by Friday 19th July 2019 and the Office of Racing has invited any member of the public with an interest in greyhound racing to make comment.

NSW Greyhound Racing Regulation 2019

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