Due to the pending rulemaking and the industry’s fight for justice and due process for the TWH and the right for all people of every walk of life to be able to continue showing and enjoying our beloved horse, the KY-HIO believes there is an urgent need to support the legal defense fund and is making a $1,500 advance donation to help fight the battle before us.

We encourage all exhibitors and owners who are going to show with multiple HIO’s during the season, to go ahead and purchase your Horse and Exhibitor cards now. This will help make funds available for the legal fund sooner rather than later in the year.

As many know, the KY-HIO announced in February they would not enforce the TWHBEA Horse and Exhibitor cards at our affiliated shows. Prior to making our decision, TWHBEA provided the HIO’s with information regarding horse and exhibitor entries from 2022 and 2023. Based on the statistics provided, it was determined that KY-HIO had less than 5% of the industry total for horse and exhibitor entries that did not cross over and show with multiple HIO’s. Taking all the information into consideration along with the feedback we received from exhibitors, owners, and show managers, the board determined the percentage to be very low and believed fund raising for the legal fund could be achieved in our region using other methods while providing the local youth, families, trail riders, and fair exhibitors an economical way to continue showing. Our region has experienced a steady decline in the number of shows being offered which is disturbing. The HIO needs to support the shows and show managers who continue to offer classes, and not deter entries by imposing more fees. This decision was not made lightly; however, our Board believes it was the right decision. As a result, we received messages of appreciation and some of retaliation.

We want to take this time to Thank those of you that are in support of our decision and understand our intentions of providing an opportunity for all to show. The KY-HIO vowed to do their part to support the industry and we stand firm on doing so. We are a small HIO with limited financial resources but believe fundraising can be achieved in other ways that will be more compatible with our area.

The KY-HIO is working to develop a strategy that will allow us to raise funds for the legal cause throughout the show season with no fee or rate increases to the exhibitors or shows. Every penny raised will be reported to the public. The industry has seen unnecessary turmoil the past few weeks. It is time for everyone to come together. We need to be working for one cause and accept that there are diverse ways to achieve success. Exhibitors, owners, and trainers need to support all shows regardless of the affiliated HIO without fear of retribution. Everyone should be united in the fight, open minded, and demonstrate a willingness to accept all methods of support.

Riders of all ages, ranges of experience, income classifications and walk of life are welcome to show at any KY-HIO affiliated show. We hope those that have spoken against us will join us to show a united industry and remember the joys that comes from showing and love for our horses.