Commonwealth gives out millions to keep horses in Kentucky

Commonwealth gives out millions to keep horses in Kentucky
By: Erica Byfield

GRAVES COUNTY, Ky. - Mention Kentucky and you think of horses, you may not realize it but horse breeding is a major industry in the state. Recently, to make sure the spirit stays strong, state leaders passed out some sizable checks to breeders.

As a kid I always wanted a horse and never had the opportunity to have one, so when we moved down here I said I'm going to take riding lessons" said Amy Hanson, her lessons turned into an itch to join the horse industry. "The first horse we owned was Callaway as a Penny's Worth, and we called him penny" said Hanson.

Penny lane farm houses more than 100 majestic animals. Hanson's farm breeds horses, this year alone she has 20 mares "we're breeding so we don't know what were going to get."

She hopes to win a major show competition and if she does, there's an added bonus, thanks to the Kentucky Breeder's Incentive Fund. "The state of Kentucky is known for horses so why not try to get as many people to breed here as they can" said Hanson.

As of Thursday the commonwealth passed out nearly 12.5 million dollars to breeders; whose winning horses are born and raised in the Blue Grass State. It doesn't matter the type of horse you raise.  The state of Kentucky is giving out money to people who breed all types from race to lesson horses.

State leaders believe cash incentives will keep breeders from moving outside Kentucky. Hanson says she had no plans on leaving, but since year old Reba placed 4th in the World Championships the money helps. "Basically were in the business sale horses and keep the farm going so any added incentives that we get it just goes back into the farm" said Hanson, where she is prepping and training the rest of her regal herd, hoping for another winner.

The Kentucky Breeder's Incentive Fund is supported by the tax revenue paid on stud fees.