Kentucky Home Passes Sports activities Betting Invoice By Practically 2-to-1 Margin

Posted on: March 13, 2023, 07:52h. 

Final up to date on: March 13, 2023, 07:52h.

The Kentucky Home handed a invoice to legalize sports activities betting within the state early Monday night.

State Rep. Michael Meredith discusses Home Invoice 551, which might legalize sports activities betting within the state, on the Home flooring Monday. The invoice handed by an almost 2-to-1 margin and now heads to the Senate. (Picture: On line

The 62-34 vote on Home Invoice 551 cleared the three-fifths majority supporters wanted to get because the invoice generates income and makes appropriations in a non-budget 12 months.

The invoice would permit Kentucky’s 9 racetracks to supply retail sportsbooks at its tracks and simulcasting amenities. It additionally would permit tracks to associate with as much as three cellular operators every.

Tracks would pay $500,000 for a license, with an annual renewal charge of $50,000. Operators would pay a $50,000 license charge and an annual renewal charge of $10,000.

Retail sports activities betting revenues can be taxed at 9.75% of adjusted gross revenues, whereas on-line operators would pay a 14.25% tax. The one deductions allowed can be for the .25% federal excise tax the federal authorities locations on every wager.

It’s the second straight 12 months the Home has handed a invoice. As soon as once more, the invoice now heads to the Senate, the place final 12 months’s invoice died after failing to get a committee listening to or a flooring vote earlier than the session ended. This 12 months, the invoice will want 23 sure votes to move within the 37-member Senate.

Nonetheless, supporters are expressing optimism for this 12 months’s invoice, whilst simply 5 legislative days stay within the session.

State Rep. Michael Meredith, R-Oakland, the invoice’s main sponsor, believes they’re about a few votes away from the 23 they should move the invoice within the Senate this 12 months.

Drawback Gaming Fund Added to Invoice

One purpose for Meredith’s optimism is what was included in a Home flooring modification Monday. That invoice included a provision for an issue gaming fund, with that fund receiving 2.5% of the tax income generated yearly.

That was explicitly added, Meredith mentioned, as a result of a few senators requested it.

Hopefully, that’ll shore up these (votes), and we’ll slim it down,” Meredith advised On line after the invoice’s passage.

The issue gaming fund was one which state Rep. Al Gentry had championed, D-Louisville, who has been the first co-sponsor on sports activities betting laws within the Home.

Gentry had filed a invoice earlier within the session that may have created an issue gaming fund that may have obtained cash from all sectors of authorized gaming in Kentucky. Whereas this fund would solely be coated by sports activities betting tax income, he advised On line he was nonetheless delighted to see it inserted.

Kentucky is one of some states that doesn’t have an issue playing fund.

“I put a variety of work into pushing that for a number of years now and glad to see it’s in there,” he mentioned.

As well as, each Meredith and state Rep. Matt Koch, R-Paris, have talked about citing a extra complete downside gaming fund for subsequent 12 months’s session.

The issue gaming fund was the second vital optimistic change for the invoice. Final week, the Home Licensing, Occupations, and Administrative Laws Committee accredited a substitute invoice that eliminated a 12-month, in-person licensing requirement for cellular account registrations.

Whereas the Home handed Meredith’s flooring modification, two others introduced by a invoice opponent failed.

State Rep. Josh Calloway, R-Irvington, sought to ban the usage of bank cards for sports activities betting deposits and lift the minimal age to position a wager on a sporting occasion from 18 to 21. Each failed, with the age change falling by a 39-48 vote.

Calloway, after his amendments have been defeated, mentioned on the ground that he wouldn’t cease preventing for Kentuckians, particularly towards issues that may “destroy folks’s lives completely.”

Time Operating Out in Kentucky Normal Meeting

Supporters of the sports activities betting invoice obtained excellent news final week when a sophisticated agenda for Tuesday’s Senate Licensing and Occupations Committee listening to included HB 551. Nonetheless, Meredith mentioned , after Monday’s vote, the committee could not take up his invoice till presumably Wednesday. The Senate L&O Committee can also be anticipated to take up the grey/talent video games invoice that handed the Home final week and a invoice that may legalize medical marijuana.

Whereas Meredith and different supporters specific optimism in regards to the invoice’s possibilities, the clock is working out on this 12 months’s session.

After Monday, there are simply 5 legislative days remaining. Three of them happen this week, with lawmakers recessing beginning on Thursday for Gov. Andy Beshear’s veto consideration interval.

The session will conclude on March 29-30.

One other factor the invoice has in its favor is Beshear’s help. He campaigned 4 years in the past on legalizing sports activities betting and reiterated that help earlier this 12 months in his State of the Commonwealth tackle.

“I don’t suppose you’re going to see a veto,” Meredith mentioned. “So, I feel all people’s fairly comfy sitting it down till after the veto interval.”



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