Efforts to revitalise the racing industry took a step forward with the reconstitution of the New Zealand Racing Board as the Racing Industry Transition Agency, (RITA) today (1 July 2019).
The creation of RITA includes the formation of a new Board of directors to oversee the transition of the industry as directed by the Minister for Racing and provides the legislative mandate to carry out business-as-usual functions.
RITA retains the existing functions of the NZRB, including ongoing operation of the TAB and Trackside and is anticipated to run for a term of one year.
RITA Chief Executive John Allen said the new name of the organisation was an outcome of the Racing Reform Bill coming into force and reflected a shift in focus to support efforts to stimulate the industry.
“As well as overseeing critical changes for the industry, the Racing Industry Transition Agency will also ensure we maintain a strong focus on managing all of our business as usual activities whether that be in our retail network, on Trackside or in the many other ways we support the industry,” said Allen.
The formation of RITA follows the recent passing of the Racing Reform Bill which also addressed the industry’s need for additional revenue with the phasing out of totalisator duty and the introduction of two new charges on overseas betting operators to help ensure they contribute to the New Zealand racing and sports codes from which they benefit.