As a TBA colleague has already already pointed out, NYRA has announced major purse cuts for the upcoming Aqueduct winter meet, which opens October 29th.
Apparently in response to the sharp drop-off in handle in recent months –
In addition, NYRA has announced that it will lay off 42 low-level employees when the
OK, I understand that business is down, and I’m willing, as a horse owner, to take my share of the hit through lower purses, even though the cost of keep a horse in New York keeps going up. And I understand that, with free admission and free parking at Aqueduct, not to mention the anticipated lower attendance, some jobs may become redundant.
But did anyone in NYRA think that maybe some management staff should be let go as well? Or how about a 10% across-the-board cut in top-level management salaries? Or even, if NYRA insists that some of the costs be borne by those workers least able to afford them, how about talking with NYRA’s various unions about a temporary wage rollback that would allow everyone at least to keep their jobs? That’s a tactic that’s been used with some success in the auto and airline industries when they fell on hard times.
Sure, some of the parking attendants, whitecaps and program sellers also have jobs on the backstretch in the morning – probably paying all of $350-$400 a week. They need those afternoon jobs with NYRA just to get by. These hard-working people, many of whom I’ve known for years, deserve better than this.