LEXINGTON, Ky. — The Kentucky Equine Education Project (KEEP) is hosting its third annual KEEP Day in Frankfort on Tuesday, Feb. 12, 2019. KEEP Day in Frankfort provides KEEP grassroots members, industry leaders and horse breed associations an opportunity to share with state legislators the importance of horses to their districts and to the state’s economy.
The event will take place from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. in the Senate Caucus Room, Room 265 in the Capitol Annex. The event will allow industry stakeholders, including horse enthusiasts and racing fans, to interact with many of their state senators and representatives.
Horses of all breeds form a $3.4 billion industry in the Commonwealth, not including tourism, that supports nearly 80,000 direct and indirect jobs and spans all 120 counties. Kentucky is home to 35,000 operations with at least one horse, totaling 238,000 equines and $23.4 billion when including related assets, according to a University of Kentucky Department of Agriculture survey.
“KEEP Day in Frankfort has been an important event in connecting the horse industry – including those who show, ride and own horses – with lawmakers to demonstrate the depth and breadth of the industry across the entire state. As important decisions are made that could impact everyone in the industry from the smallest operations to the largest horse farms and everyone in between, it is critical that lawmakers are made aware of KEEP members’ concerns,” said KEEP executive vice president Elisabeth Jensen.
Created in 2004 to preserve, promote and protect the state’s signature industry, KEEP represents and advocates on behalf of Kentucky’s entire horse industry – all breeds and equine pursuits.
“Important issues on the table that could impact the horse industry include legal sports wagering, the state’s need for new revenues, sales tax equity for equines and more,” Jensen said. “Additionally, we have lots of positive news to share, particularly the continued upward trajectory of our racing industry and KEEP’s partnership in a Chamber of Commerce-led project to identify data-driven solutions to the workforce shortages within the horse industry.”