Tension heightens between Councilman Kozachik, Greyhound Park’s CEO

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Tension heightens between Councilman Kozachik, Greyhound Park’s CEO

CREATED Sep 28, 2012

Reporter: Claire Doan

TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) – It started as an argument over steroid injections for racing dogs at Tucson Greyhound Park (TGP), but now the fight between Councilman Steve Kozachik and the track’s CEO and General Manager Tom Taylor has gotten personal and even ugly.

It’s no secret that Kozachik, who’s against dog racing and anabolic steroids injections, wants to shut down TGP. Taylor wants to keep the track open, maintaining that they do everything in the interest of the dogs. However, the two now have strong words for each other, beyond what’s happening at the track.

“He said he wants to shut down Greyhound Park. Now it’s personal. Now I take offense to it, because he’s trying to blindly get into a truck with dynamite and drive into Tucson Greyhound Park and blow it up,” Taylor told 9 On Your Side in an interview on September 11, adding that Kozachik is jeopardizing the jobs of more than 100 people at the track. He declined to be interviewed for this story.

KGUN9 News asked Kozachik if he is making it personal.

“Some people might think so, but many others would not. Quite frankly, this is about the welfare of the animals and it’s a sleazy industry and the guy is all over it,” Kozachik said. “He ought to spend time maintaining his track making sure dogs aren’t injuring themselves.”

Taylor takes issue with Kozachik saying Tucson banned steroid injections for greyhounds. Technically, mayor and council passed a measure in study session supporting the ban, but it’s not law yet.

Taylor wrote Kozachik the following in an email on Thursday, copying Mayor Jonathan Rothschild: “Be honest. You have failed to research this issue from the beginning and you continue to lie to the press and the citizens of Tucson. You should be ashamed of yourself.”

Kozachik said “it’s fine if Taylor wants to pick lint,” but added that he needs to take a civics class so he can understand how laws are made as well as the importance of obeying them.

“The guy’s a pathetic ass. He’s clearly going into meltdown mode. Quite frankly, I don’t have a lot of respect for someone who’s pimpin’ such a sleazy industry,” Kozachik said.

To be clear: Tucson City Council did express unanimous support at their study session to ban steroids in city limits, but it’s not law yet until they adopt it at regular session on Oct. 9.