Kentucky House Returns Sports Betting Bill to Committee

Kentucky House Returns Sports Betting Bill to Committee

The hopes of a sports betting bill passing through the Kentucky state legislature were squashed today after the House returned it to the Licensing, Occupations, and Administrative Regulations Committee.

Bill goes back

The Kentucky House sent House Bill 137 back to the committee on Tuesday after keeping the bill with them for over two months in anticipation of a floor vote. This action had dampened the outlook on the state’s prospects of launching a legalized sports betting market this year. On Wednesday, State Rep. Adam Koenig, the chairman of the committee, expressed his pessimistic outlook on the bill and called its passage through the legislature “unlikely.” He added, “Nothing is dead until we adjourn sine die, but it is on life support.”

Kentucky House Returns Sports Betting Bill to Committee

Interestingly, the prospects of the bill’s passage are not limited because of a shorter legislative session. While other states are adjourning or suspending ongoing legislative sessions, the Kentucky General Assembly has no plans to cancel. The Senate is expected to pass its version of the state budget on Thursday, which will then be reconciled with the House version. The session will end on April 15 and has 12 more legislative days available.

What Kentucky’s sports betting could have been

The bill by Republican Rep, Koenig allows for the legalization of sports betting. It also permits regulation of daily fantasy sports and online poker operations. The bill even allows the Kentucky Speedway and the numerous horse and harness racing tracks to host retail sportsbooks within their premises. For the first 18 months of legalization, customers will have to sign up at a track affiliated with the app of their choice before betting on mobiles.

According to the bill’s supporters, this could be a great measure to generate revenue for the state. They hope that sportsbooks could bring at least $22.5 million in new revenue. The 18-member committee headed by Koenig passed the bill unanimously on January 15 and they expected the bill to get a floor voting and pass on to the Senate.

Some socially conservative Republicans of the House are not convinced with the supposed benefits of the bill. In fact, the majority of cosponsors of the bill are Democrats who hold a minority in the chamber. However, House Speaker David Osborne is a Republican who is one of the bill’s 41 cosponsors. Democratic Gov. Andy Beshear could also be supportive of the bill has he ran on the promise of expanded gambling.

About sherlock

Sherlock Gomes loves to write and express his views on anything related to Gaming, Gambling, & Casino. He has been covering Gaming for more than two years now.