AMARILLO,Texas (KAMR/KCIT) — Mayor Ginger Nelson began an online petition to keep the American Quarter Horse Association in Amarillo.
This comes after the AQHA released a statement that the Fort Worth City Council approved a 50-year ground lease for the American Quarter Horse Foundation.
The American Quarter Horse Association is a staple in Amarillo.
Recently the AQHA released a statement saying in part “A group of external stakeholders is raising funds for a possible relocation of the American Quarter Horse Association to Fort Worth, Texas.”
Since then, Mayor Nelson has made it her mission to try and keep the facility in town.
“I started a petition so the city and the citizens would have a way to talk to the quarter horse association and tell them how important they are to us,” Mayor Nelson, stated.
For many area families, the American Quarter Horse has ties to their ranching heritage.
“I love seeing people telling quarter horses stories from their perspective and from the perspective of their family members and their ranching heritage that’s part of what makes it so important,” Mayor Nelson, explained.
Mayor Nelson said it is not just the history being lost, but there is also an economic impact.
“Tourism carries us so much here with our sales tax and our hotel occupancy tax, so everything that we can collect in those two taxes helps us with our property tax and we can keep it lower,” Mayor Nelson said.
So far the petition has more than 3,000 signatures, along with comments stating how much the AQHA means to them.
“What I didn’t want to happen was for something to change without them knowing how important they are to our city and how badly we want them to stay,” Mayor Nelson stated.
We spoke to the American Quarter Horse Association on the petition and the possibility of a move they said in part:
This action by the Fort Worth City Council does not mean AQHA has made a definitive commitment to relocate. This is only a step in the process of the possibility of a move. There is no timeline for construction or relocation, as relocation is not guaranteed at this point.American Quarter Horse Association
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