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Sunday, 29 November -0001 19:03

Study Measures Saratoga Race Course Impact

By | Sports

SARATOGA COUNTY- The Saratoga Race Course has an estimated $186- $213 million impact on the economy each year, according to a report released this week by the Saratoga County Industrial Development Agency (IDA).

Expenditures from race course participants, owners, trainers, jockeys and breeders, totals $58 million, and tourist spending accounts for between $67 and $94 million each year. From these contributions, up to $14.6 million in tax revenue is generated.

The report, which was prepared by HR&A Advisors, Inc., updates an economic impact analysis of the race course that was conducted in 2006. It measures the economic benefits of the annual summer race meeting in several categories on a nine county area, which includes and surrounds Saratoga County.

Other major findings related to Saratoga County included:
Annually, Saratoga Race Course creates between 1,830 and 2,050 full-time jobs in the region. Between 2005 and 2010, employment in racing-related industries increased by 30 percent in Saratoga County compared to an eight percent increase in non-racing related employment.
Tax revenues generated from the operation of Saratoga Race Course are estimated to range between $12.6 million and $14.6 million in 2010, with up to $5.5 million accrued to the City of Saratoga Springs and Saratoga County and up to $9.1 million to New York State.

Saratoga County experienced nine percent population growth in 2010 compared with the 2000 census. Overall, New York State saw a two percent increase in residents during the same time period.

The Saratoga County hospitality and tourism industry has performed strongly in recent years, with a 3.1 percent increase in hotel overnight stays and over $40 million invested into the construction of 520 new hotel rooms during the past five years.

The median home value in Saratoga County, at $250,000, is the highest in the nine-county study region, and over $50,000 greater than the second highest county (Columbia) in the study. An analysis of properties in Saratoga Springs revealed at least 175 properties with a market value of $107 million belonged to persons connected to the Thoroughbred industry.

Saratoga County continues to be an attractive location for Thoroughbred breeding operations: nine percent of agricultural parcels throughout the county were classified as horse farms in 2010, a percentage that is much greater than the overall study region and New York State. This also is a significant increase from 2004, when only six percent of Saratoga County agricultural parcels were classified as horse farms.

The study also cited statistics that show Saratoga Race Course’s prominent place among Thoroughbred race tracks in New York State and throughout the country. Highlights include:
Saratoga Race Course maintains a higher annual attendance, average daily attendance and average daily live handle than any other racetrack in the country that hosted at least five Grade 1 stakes races in 2011.

The average purse per race at Saratoga Race Course was approximately $62,880 in 2010, significantly higher than the New York State average of approximately $32,030.

Visit www.saratogacountyida.org for a link to the complete
economic analysis.

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