Jock­eys’ ben­e­fits ‘ se­cure’

Townsville Bulletin - - SPORT - BEN DOR­RIES

QUEENS­LAND jock­eys left a high- pow­ered meet­ing with rac­ing bosses yesterday sat­is­fied there were no im­me­di­ate plans to slash their ben­e­fits.

The state’s jock­eys went into the meet­ing with in­terim Rac­ing Queens­land CEO Ian Hall want­ing an­swers over ru­mours of po­ten­tial cuts to worker’s com­pen­sa­tion, prize­money and rid­ing fees.

Hall, of ac­count­ing firm KPMG, took charge af­ter the dis­missal of for­mer Rac­ing Queens­land CEO Dar­ren Con­don fol­low­ing the grey­hound live- bait­ing scan­dal.

Hall re­peat­edly as­sured the jock­eys, led by ex­pe­ri­enced hoop Larry Cas­sidy, it was “busi­ness as usual” and said there was no blue­print to cut ben­e­fits in the short- term.

“He lis­tened care­fully to our con­cerns about WorkCover and other ben­e­fits and he said at this stage, it was busi­ness as usual,” Queens­land Jock­eys As­so­ci­a­tion pres­i­dent Glen Pren­tice said.

“He made it pretty clear he had the best in­ter­ests of the in­dus­try at heart, although they ( RQ) are still es­tab­lish­ing the fi­nan­cial po­si­tion of the or­gan­i­sa­tion. At this stage, WorkCover, other jockey ben­e­fits and prize­money is all still in­tact. It was a pro­duc­tive meet­ing and hope­fully it has built up a bit of con­fi­dence.”

While there are no im­me­di­ate plans to cut the Queens­land ap­pren­tice train­ing pro­gram, it re­mains pos­si­ble fu­ture op­tions will be looked at to make it more fi­nan­cially vi­able.

“With the ap­pren­tice train­ing pro­gram, they may have to look at op­por­tu­ni­ties to try to sub­sidise it,” Pren­tice said.

“Un­til they ( RQ) get the full fi­nan­cial pic­ture, there will be no de­ci­sions made.

“We left the meet­ing hap­pier than we thought we were go­ing to be at the start of it.”

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