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Animal Rights Group Want Racetrack Bill Vetoed

16 May 2002

TALLAHASSEE, Florida – (Press Release) -- Animal protection advocates today announced that in tomorrow's edition of the Tallahassee Democrat, they will publicly urge Governor Jeb Bush to veto Senate Bill 160, which would legalize high-stakes poker at Florida dog and horse racetracks.

"A bill is now before you that dog track owners would have you believe will help the state's economic recovery efforts and the greyhound dogs that race in Florida," the letter states, which will run as a full-page advertisement. "These claims couldn't be further from the truth."

Two dozen animal protection groups, including two Florida-based greyhound adoption organizations, have signed onto the letter. Collectively, these organizations have more than 300,000 members and constituents in Florida.

"This measure would further subsidize this cruel industry," said GREY2K USA President Carey M. Theil. "Expanding gambling at greyhound racetracks is not in the best interest of greyhound dogs, nor in the best interest of the citizens of Florida."

Senate Bill 160 was initially filed as a measure to promote the adoption of unprofitable greyhounds, but was later amended to legalize high-stakes poker at Florida dog tracks. Each year, an estimated 20,000 greyhounds are killed nationwide when they are no longer fast enough to turn a profit.

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