Gold Circle to Receive Less Bookmakers Tax Contributions

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5 months 1 week ago #833895 by naresh
www.sportingpost.co.za/2022/01/bill-has-...ions-for-kzn-racing/

After the hardships the province faced last year, including the unrest in July and the Covid-19 variants that have decimated the tourism industry, KwaZulu-Natal simply cannot afford the heavy financial toll of the racing industry’s collapse.
This warning was issued on Wednesday in a communication to Gold Circle Members by Chairperson Belinda Scott in reference to a recently published bill which she says ‘is of great concern to Gold Circle and to the horseracing industry at large’.

The Gaming and Betting Tax Amendment Bill was introduced in the KwaZulu Natal provincial legislature on 10 December 2021, and was subsequently published in the Provincial Gazette on 7 January 2022.


Student S’busiswe Dube presented a matching pair of outfits at the first round of judging of the Vodacom Durban July Young Designer Award

Since the Bill includes provisions with potentially ruinous consequences for the industry, Mrs Scot said she thought it important to ensure that Gold Circle members are aware of it, and the magnitude of the threat it poses.

Since 1976, the racing operators have received from or via bookmakers, a contribution to the costs incurred by the racing operators in staging racing and providing racing product for fixed odds betting.

This has been a part of our law for decades, and most recently finds itself encapsulated in the provisions of the KwaZulu-Natal Gaming and Betting Tax Act.

In short, winning punters of fixed odds bets pay a tax of 6% of the winnings to the provincial fiscus and, in turn, half of that (3%) is paid by the fiscus to Gold Circle as a contribution to the cost of staging the Sport in KwaZulu-Natal.


The July is a massive economic boost for the province (Pic – Chase Liebenberg)

The new Gaming and Betting Tax Amendment Bill, which was initially published on 29 November 2021, seeks to remove Gold Circle’s right to receive this 3%.

The new Bill provides that 1.4% (just under half of the contribution) will be diverted to the ‘Transformation Fund’, which will be under the control of the KZN Gaming & Betting Board. In relation to the remaining 1.6%, Gold Circle will have the right to apply for all of, or some of that amount, for the purpose of ‘development’ and ‘transformation’, provided it complies with a series of conditions which the KwaZulu-Natal Gaming and Betting Board may wish to impose from time to time.

Mrs Scott suggests that this proposal would at least (nearly) halve the contribution paid to Gold Circle (although it could just as well completely delete the contribution), and thus poses an existential threat to the industry as this funding subsidises the significant costs that racecourse operators incur to keep the industry alive.



If enacted, the Bill would also have far-reaching consequences for employment in the sector and the province. The economic participants whose livelihoods depend on the industry include workers at the racecourse, training facilities, racehorse breeders and trainers, the Coastal Horse Care Unit, the South African Jockey Academy, horse feed manufacturers, veterinarians, farriers, grooms, jockeys, horse transporters, totalisator staff and downstream leisure horse grooms amongst others.

Of particular cultural and economic concern is the fate of the Durban July should the proposal be enacted. The Durban July is the premier racing event in the country, the largest horseracing event in Africa, and an institution in KwaZulu Natal.

It brings visitors to the province to the benefit of the accommodation, transport, entertainment, and fashion industries. The Economic Impact Assessment of the 2019 event showed a contribution of R288 million to the Municipality’s Gross Domestic Product.

In a shocking observation, the current Bill could make the continued hosting of the event by Gold Circle financially unfeasible.

After the hardships the province faced last year, including the unrest in July and the Covid-19 variants that have decimated the tourism industry, the province simply cannot afford the heavy financial toll of the industry’s collapse.

It is all the more concerning that the Bill was already published once before irregularly and with insufficient time for public comment. So grave was the initial procedural deficiency that the Bill was withdrawn, pursuant to representations made by Gold Circle to the Secretary of the KwaZulu-Natal Legislature. This was a hopeful sign for the industry until the Bill was republished on 7 January 2022.

The new deadline for public comment is 6 February 2022. Once this window closes, the Bill will be debated in the legislature and voted on.

While the debate process in the portfolio committee will present more opportunities for input on the Bill, including the possibility of public hearings , Mrs Scott says ‘we cannot be complacent’.

Gold Circle has already communicated its concerns about the Bill to the Secretary of the KwaZulu- Natal legislature as well as the KwaZulu-Natal provincial treasury, and is currently preparing its official legal submission on the Bill. The company will remain engaged throughout the legislative process to try and help ensure that the Bill’s more calamitous provisions are not enacted.

“We strongly encourage our members to make their voices heard on this matter as well,” says Mrs Scott.

Gold Circle respects any good intentions of a government, but this Bill in its current form can only contribute to the province’s already substantial unemployment rate, recently worsened by the July unrest.

For the sake of the thousands of people employed by the industry – and the horserace lovers who have supported the Durban July over its 125-year history and the Industry at large – this Bill simply cannot be allowed to pass in its current form.

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5 months 1 week ago #833898 by Sammy Silver
Belinda was the former Minister of Finance for KZN.

I am sure she has her contacts in government and can avert this catastrophe!!!

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5 months 1 week ago - 5 months 1 week ago #833901 by Mac
Just how many nails are there in the SA racing coffin?


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"Lot 226, 2016 NYS, Diamondveld, R1.5m"
Last edit: 5 months 1 week ago by Mac.

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5 months 1 week ago #833936 by Bob Brogan
Have just read this for the 1st time and surprised there are not 3 pages of comments! This could be a disaster!!

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5 months 1 week ago #833939 by TNaicker

Just how many nails are there in the SA racing coffin?


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Sufficient to be ready for burial...:(

Life's too short to have a long face...so, cherish the good, learn from the bad and forget the rest...

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5 months 1 week ago #833949 by Saint T
Bob, the disaster is not the potential loss of the entire 3% tax (paid by punters). The disaster is that the operators are controlled and managed by people who are not in touch with reality nor have they responded to the challenges that have plagued the industry over the past decade.

IF EVERY DIRECTOR, EXECUTIVE or MANAGER at Gold Circle had the work ethic and commitment of DONOVAN DILLON (africanbettingclan.com/forum/south-afric...ockey-donovan-dillon), racing's biggest challenge would be no more.

Donovan Dillon sweats his ass (literally and figuratively) 24/7 to earn his next Rand. In fact, if he didn't, he would not have a job as a jockey.

The question for Belinda Scott is: How many members of your board of directors, of your executive management and you top management have the work ethic and commitment that rivals that of Donovan Dillon?

There are pockets of excellence and commitment by many personnel in the industry (smaller breeders, trainers, assistant trainers, work riders and grooms to name a few) that live from hand to mouth so that FATCATS at Gold Gircle and other operators can live the life of leisure devoid of commitment nor any measurable contribution to the industry.

Belinda and her team must watch the video of Donovan Dillon and let reality sink as to what this industry requires of each and every person that draws a salary (or board fees)!

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5 months 1 week ago #834109 by Bob Brogan
NEW BETTING TAX RELATED BILL THREATENS TO CRIPPLE KZN RACING

David Thiselton

A new bill introduced in the Kwazulu Natal provincial legislature could have a crippling effect on horseracing and could spell the end of the jewel of Durban, the Vodacom July, and the bill could also have an adverse effect on those whom it intends helping i.e. the previously disadvantaged, who will suffer more job losses.

Gold Circle chairman Belinda Scott alerted members to the Bill in a letter and here are some extracts: "Since 1976, the racing operators have received from or via bookmakers a contribution to the costs incurred by the racing operators in staging racing and providing racing product for fixed odds betting. In short, winning punters of fixed odds bets pay a tax of 6% of the winnings to the provincial fiscus and, in turn, half of that (3%) is paid by the fiscus to Gold Circle.

The new Gaming and Betting Tax Amendment Bill, seeks to remove Gold Circle’s right to receive this 3%. The new Bill provides that 1.4% will be diverted to the ‘Transformation Fund’, which will be under the control of the KZN Gaming & Betting Board. Gold Circle will have the right to apply for all of or some of the remaining 1.6% for the purpose of “development” and “transformation”, provided it complies with a series of conditions which the KZN Gaming and Betting Board may wish to impose from time to time.

This proposal poses an existential threat to the industry.

If enacted, the Bill would also have far-reaching consequences as thousands are employed directly or indirectly in the racing industry.

Of particular cultural and economic concern is the fate of the Durban July, the premier racing event in the country and an institution in KZN. It brings visitors to the province to the benefit of the accommodation, transport, entertainment, and fashion industries. The Economic Impact Assessment of the 2019 event showed a contribution of R288 million to the Municipality’s Gross Domestic Product. But the current Bill could make the continued hosting of the event by Gold Circle financially unfeasible.

After the hardships the province faced last year, including the unrest and the Covid-19 variants that have decimated the tourism industry, the province simply cannot afford the heavy financial toll of the industry’s collapse.

In light of these dire consequences, it is all the more concerning that the Bill was already published once before. So grave was the initial procedural deficiency that the Bill was withdrawn, pursuant to representations made by Gold Circle to the Secretary of the KZN Legislature. This was a hopeful sign until the Bill was republished on 7 January 2022.

The new deadline for public comment is 6 February 2022. Once this window closes, the Bill will be debated in the legislature and voted on.

While the debate process in the portfolio committee will present more opportunities for input on the Bill, including the possibility of public hearings, we cannot be complacent.

Gold Circle has already communicated its concerns to the Secretary of the KZN legislature as well as the KZN provincial treasury, and is currently preparing its official legal submission. We will remain engaged throughout the legislative process to try and help ensure the Bill’s more calamitous provisions are not enacted. We strongly encourage our members to make their voices heard on this matter as well.

Gold Circle respects any good intentions of a government, but this Bill in its current form can only contribute to the province’s already substantial unemployment rate. For the sake of the thousands of people employed by the industry – and the horserace lovers who have supported the Durban July over its 125-year history and the Industry at large – this Bill simply cannot be allowed to pass in its current form."

The Durban July's popularity reached new heights in the mid 1960s due to a legendary horse called Sea Cottage. The great Syd Laird-trained colt recovered from a bullet wound, suffered just three weeks before the race, to run an unlucky fourth in the 1966 July. The following year, with the bullet still lodged in the soft flesh of his hindquarter, he unwound his famous finish in the Greyville straight and caught the lightweight Jollify, to whom he gave 27 pounds, on the line. It was declared a dead-heat and from that moment onward the July was to forever be entwined in the fabric of Durban history.

That fairytale story happened during the dark days of apartheid so it was fitting the second and only other dead-heat in the big race's history, in 2008, will be remembered in July folklore not only for two great horses in Pocket Power and Dancer's Daughter but also for the "The Groom who won the July", Cyprian Mkhonowana.

Dancer's Daughter had been unusually lacklustre in her KZN Champions Season pipe-opener and in her general demeanour. It was decided she must be missing her regular groom, to whom she was very attached, and so trainer Justin Snaith flew Cyprian in from Cape Town. When he arrived at Snaith's Clairwood yard Dancer's Daughter was so happy to see him she began neighing and kicking her stable door. She was immediately back to her old self and in her next start won the Grade 1 Gold Challenge, beating the best milers in the country, including the legendary Pocket Power. She followed that up by dead-heating with Pocket Power in the July.

Ironically, Cyprian will be one of the people affected by the Bill because he currently works at Snaith's satellite yard at Summerveld.

Picture: Antony Grote/Gameplan Media

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5 months 1 week ago #834122 by Saint T
David Thiselton’s last 4 paragraphs are pathetic to say the least.

David, remind us about the following:

1. What is the balance of the cash pile that Gold Circle is sitting on that is ringfenced following the sale of Clairwood racecourse; and

2. How much of the original cash pile Gold Circle has burnt to date; and

3. What was the amount that was donated by Gold Circle to Phumelela by not collecting long outstanding monies owed by Phumelela leading up to and them going into business rescue;

4. Why is it that Gold Circle is unable to prove that it has title and ownership of Phumelela Gold Enterprises, that has resulted in it going into arbitration with Evans; and

5. Why is 1.4% being diverted to a “Transformation Fund” if Gold Circle has been the beacon of transformation doing a sterling job? Surely on this point, on its own, you can launch a legal battle to challenge the legislature that Gold Circle’s track record is beyond reproach on the subject of transformation.

If you are looking for advice, I suggest you make contact with an old school Jewish mother who will be able to dispense top draw advise on how to send your addressees on a proper guilt trip. Not the crap you serve in your last 4 paragraphs.

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5 months 1 week ago #834137 by Bob Brogan
It's incredible how much racing relies on punters... Huh

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3 months 3 days ago #839040 by Bob Brogan
I'm hearing PHUM and GC have settled...

Hopefully everyone can just become chums now

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3 months 2 days ago #839075 by Over the Air

I'm hearing PHUM and GC have settled...

Hopefully everyone can just become chums now

This was always inevitable. The delay in settling was clearly always the goal. I look at things differently Bob. GC should completely shun 4 Racing. They dont deserve chum status. Based on what 4Q have dished up in terms of television, GC would be well advised to steer well clear.

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3 months 2 days ago #839079 by Saint T
GC and Phum were more than chums – GC trusted Phum to the point that their family jewels were handed over to Phum, presumably on a hand-shake as GC had difficulty presenting legal agreements to substantiate their claims to Evans.

4Q and their china, John Evans, exploited the above situation by choking GC over the last 2 years by withholding the revenues of the sale of GC’s pictures to the international consumers.

4Q did the same thing again, in the past 3 months with GC, by threatening not to air KZN racing on C240.

If GC is not prepared to be 4Q’s biatch, there is no prospects of them becoming chums. It’s how 4Q rolls.
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