NSW premier Mike Baird could back down on the greyhound racing ban

Photo: Vince Caligiuri/Getty.

NSW premier Mike Baird could back down on his pledge to put an end to greyhound racing in the state by July 1, 2017.

Tomorrow, the premier is expected to announce an extension to greyhound racing in the state for a trial period, as well as announce tougher penalties for animal ­cruelty with larger fines and a possible threat of jail time for ­offenders, according to The Australian.

Baird’s office has not commented on suggestions he is considering a compromise.

The possible backflip comes after reports that National MPs have been pressuring New South Wales deputy premier and party leader Troy Grant to change the government’s position to ban the sport before the Orange by-election on November 12.

The disenchantment over the ban also threatens to bring on a leadership spill.

Baird initially announced plans to ban greyhound racing in July, following revelations of live baiting.

An inquiry found that between 48,891 and 68,448 of the 97,783 greyhounds bred for racing in the last 12 years were killed because they were deemed too slow — a figure between 50% and 70% of all racing dogs.

Following Baird’s decision to ban the sport, New South Wales opposition leader Luke Foley also announced the Labor party will oppose the government’s move to close down the greyhound racing industry over the next 12 months.

If Baird goes ahead with his initial plans, NSW will be the first Australian state to ban greyhound racing.

The Australian has more.

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