The American Horse Council (AHC) began collecting data for the 2017 Economic Impact Study on April 1.
The study will enable the horse industry to educate the public, the media and elected officials in Congress and state legislatures regarding the industry’s economic size, impact and importance. The study will also be helpful in a number of other ways:
- Help members of Congress and the public fully understand the impact of government action on the economy and the industry;
- Examine the consequences and impacts of economic development projects and efforts, such as real estate development (competition grounds), business openings and closures, and site selection projects. The analyses can also help increase community support for these projects, as well as help obtain grants, and tax incentives.
- Economic Impact Studies are used frequently in planning and decision making regarding product development and to aid in development of marketing strategies.
Funds have been raised to begin the data collection for the study. “However, we are still short of our goal amount and are hoping to receive final pledges to officially put us over the finish line for fundraising.” said AHC President Julie Broadway. The study has been expanded to include participants under 18, and the equine welfare and sanctuary segments.”
Broadway said the survey is expected to be launched June 1 and be open for responses for four to six weeks. AHC organizational members will be asked to send a survey link directly to their members via email. A different link will direct all others to a site where they can take the survey. “This is being done to eliminate duplication and ensure statistical accuracy,” Broadway said.
Pennsylvania Breakout Planned
In addition to the National Economic Impact Study, twelve states have elected to secure a breakout for their respective states: Colorado, Kentucky, North Carolina, California, Maryland, Wisconsin, Illinois, Minnesota, Michigan, Virginia, Pennsylvania and Oklahoma.
The Pennsylvania Equine Council has agreed to fund Pennsylvania’s state breakout. “The cost is $18,000 of which we have made the first payment of $9,000,” PEC President Charlie Van Auken said. “A second payment will be due in August. To help fund this we are asking for new memberships and/or tax-deductible contributions.
“The last study of this nature for Pennsylvania was conducted in 2003 by Penn State. It was instrumental to the Pennsylvania Equine Council’s actions to get the Equine Liability Act passed. We have referenced it on other issues with legislators and decision makers. However, that data is now almost 15 years old so the relevance is being questioned. It needs to be updated to be vital to all our interests.
“With threats like the loss of funding to the University of Pennsylvania’s New Bolton Center, regulatory and zoning issues as well as other issues, we need this tool. Business, professional and association members should find value in this survey for acquiring capital, etc. We need to show the legislative and government bodies how viable the equine industry is to Pennsylvania.”
Individuals, associations and businesses can become members at http://pennsylvaniaequinecouncil.org/membership.php. Tax deductible donations should be marked Survey, made payable to the Pennsylvania Equine Foundation, and mailed to Pennsylvania Equine Foundation, 7025 Pine Rd., Harrisburg, PA 17112.
For more information on the study visit horsecouncil.org.