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Baird tipped to backflip on greyhounds

AAP logoAAP 9/10/2016 Anna Hitchings

Speculation is mounting the Baird government will back down on its controversial greyhound racing ban following mounting internal pressure and a public backlash.

Mr Baird has been tipped to announce the backflip following a cabinet meeting on Tuesday.

The move is expected to offset a backlash from numerous Nationals MPs, who are reportedly considering unseating party leader and deputy premier Troy Grant if there isn't a policy reversal.

The Nationals are due to hold a party meeting on Monday night.

Mr Baird and Mr Grant have faced intense pressure and opposition since announcing the ban three months ago.

Labor leader Luke Foley said if the speculation proves true, the Baird government needs to commit to a complete reversal of the ban.

"It can't just be a stay of execution to get Troy Grant's leadership off the hook this week," Mr Foley said.

He was referring to reports the NSW government could choose to extend the ban for a trial period while introducing tough industry standards, including harsher penalties for animal cruelty including jail sentences.

The Greyhound Breeders Owners and Trainers Association (GBOTA) has presented four guarantees to the premier and his deputy, including a controlled breeding program, zero tolerance to animal cruelty and strict standards on racing to avoid potential injury.

"We have ... a massive opportunity to build from where we're at on a platform of being willing to change and willing to put our greyhounds absolutely first and foremost in everything that we do going forward," GBOTA chief executive Brenton Scott told 2GB radio on Monday.

However, NSW Greens MP Mehreen Faruqi says Mr Baird will lose all credibility if he backs down now.

"This is the one positive and popular move the Baird Government has made, so it would be political madness to back down," Ms Faruqi said.

"The industry cannot and will not change."

A report by Greyhounds Transition Taskforce head John Keniry was due to be handed to the government on Monday and presented to Tuesday's cabinet meeting.

A recent Newspoll showed Mr Baird's approval rate had crashed from 61 to 39 per cent since December due to a number of issues, including the ban on greyhound racing.

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