Plans for a $21 million development of a new Cannington greyhound racetrack are in tatters after the State Government confirmed it wouldn't contribute.
Racing Minister Terry Waldron admitted at an estimates committee hearing at State Parliament on Tuesday the Government would not help fund the development in the latest State Budget.
A cheaper version, or a track and kennels, could replace the original plan, which had already been scaled down.
The WA Greyhound Racing Association originally planned for a $31.2m racetrack and facility to be built on the former harness training track, but that was scaled down to $21.2m, with Racing and Wagering WA to provide $9m, the WAGRA $6m and the Government $6.2m.
Shadow minister for racing Mick Murray rounded on the Barnett Government for not supporting the WAGRA.
"I'm concerned that when the lease for the current venue expires in July 2015 and WAGRA has to vacate, they'll have nowhere to call home," Murray said. "With no funding in this year's budget and nothing slotted in for future estimates, I believe the Barnett Government is abandoning greyhound racing in WA."
The ground where the grandstand and racetrack have stood for 40 years is leased from the Cannington Agricultural, Horticultural and Recreational Society, but the lease expires in July next year and the CAHRS has an agreement to develop the 2.86 hectares of land into a business park.
Waldron supported WAGRA in-principle on leasing land behind the current track from the CAHRS.
RWWA's $9m investment was to upgrade the track to allow trialling and training, and to build better kennels. But there is no money for the building of public facilities.
Waldron said he was disappointed at not gaining the funding and he was looking at other options.
He raised the example of the $3.5m public facility built at Pinjarra Trotting Club as a cheaper consolation building for the industry.
He said the Mandurah and Northam tracks would be used as WA's racetracks until Cannington was able to run as a full racing centre.
Cannington hosts 103 meetings each year with an average crowd of 711 and average on-course investment of $42,461.
This compares with Mandurah's 162 meetings and 247 patrons a meeting at $18,184 and Northam's 29 meetings with 93 patrons and $9408.
In 2012-13, punters wagered $84.3m on WA greyhound meetings off-course on the TAB, compared with $74.2m on harness racing meetings.
Cannington's average attendance is double that of Victoria's Sandown Park (342 over 105 meetings) and far superior to Wentworth Park in NSW (500 patrons, 105 meetings).
"With no funding the Barnett Government is abandoning greyhound racing in WA.""Shadow racing minister *Mick Murray *