Kentucky Sports Betting Legislation On Track For 2019

Kentucky Sports Betting Legislation On Track For 2019

New developments regarding the sports betting expansion into the state of Kentucky are coming up fast, as not long ago we’ve reported on the possible legal framework being in line for next year

…This indeed seems to be the case as is now confirmed by the Republican majority leader of Kentucky State Senate, 50-year old, Damon Thayer, who claims that legislation is definitely set for early 2019.

Setting the Stage

New information on sports betting in the Bluegrass State maintains that several land-based operators will be given permission and necessary licensing to perform sports wagering services.

In an interview for The Blood-Horse magazine, Thayer shed some new light on the matter, following the Sports Wagering and Impact on Horse Racing Symposium…

…He specifically mentioned that a group of lawmakers is looking to file in the sports betting bill before the 30-day legislative session that begins on January 8th.

He also spilled the beans on taxation, saying that it will most likely be significantly smaller than slots taxes and that sports betting taxes will be reserved for funding education programs and pension plans.

Thayer also said that he will, in principle, support the new legislation – provided that it has a provision for earmarking a percentage of tax revenues to support horseracing and horse breeding industry.

Under Certain Conditions

He said: “What’s not for debate is there has to be a component that supports the horse industry” and added:

“I think we can put together a group of Democrats and Republicans to pass this bill. I don’t want us to be one of the last states to pass sports wagering. I want us to be one of the first ten states to pass sports wagering and I want it to support the horse industry.”

When asked whether new legislation will cater to mobile and online sports wagering, he remarked that it will most likely not be the case, at least for the time being. Thayer’s views are strongly motivated by the fact that neighboring West Virginia already legalized the sports betting industry.

Commenting on whether Kentucky Governor, Matt Bevin, will support the cause, he said: “Governor Bevin has made a fairly benign comment about this issue and based on working with him I don’t think he’ll fight against it but I don’t think he’ll be out there banging the drum for it. Will he sign it? I don’t know. Will he let it [go] without a signature? I don’t know.”


“Thayer Expects KY to Move Forward on Sports Gambling”,, September 8, 2018.

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