Thoroughbred Breeders Australia (TBA) has formally lodged an application for a federal government funded thoroughbred research and development levy.
The levy, which will generate close to $2.4 million over the next three years for research and development projects, is set to be implemented in the new financial year.
It will be funded by mandatory breeder contributions collected by the Australian Stud Book. Stallion owners will pay a $10 levy per mare covered and broodmare owners will pay a $10 levy per mare returned. This money will then be matched by the Commonwealth Government.
TBA will soon begin consultation with breeders on drawing up a list of priorities for research, but areas likely to receive funding include disease control, reproduction and welfare.
As part of the application process TBA advises any levy payer who objects to the Research and Development Levy to contact the department of Agriculture. The formal period for any objections will close at 5pm AEDT on 13 February 2017.
Objections must list reasons why the levy is opposed and provide suitable supporting arguments and evidence, together with your contact details.
TBA president Basil Nolan said breeders would see the matched levy as a vital resource. “Having almost $1million to spend on research year after year on breeding will be very valuable. It gives our industry certainty and means we can develop research projects that will bring real benefits to all breeders,” he said.
“Up till now spending on research has been sporadic and we’ve not been able to plan as a nationwide industry.”
Organisations and individuals can also make contributions to the levy, with these monies also eligible for matching by the federal government. Racing Australia, the owner of the Australian Stud Book, has already committed to putting $150,000 into the levy.
The TBA initially lodged a levy application in 2013 but this was rejected. After extensive lobbying by the breeders’ peak body, Deputy Prime Minister, Barnaby Joyce, committed to support the levy in the lead up to the 2016 federal election. The fund also has the backing of shadow Agriculture Minister Joel Fitzgibbon.