A bill concerning the legislation of sports betting in Kentucky was finally amended and this means that sports betting may finally arrive in this state this year.
The House Bill 137 will allow betting on horse racetracks and the Kentucky Speedway. This bill was unanimously approved the House Committee on Wednesday and it’s now heading to the full House of Representatives
It is the local operations of sports betting that was really not legal in the US back then. This meant that Americans can still bet on sports, but this is as long as they place their bets outside the country. However, this is still applicable to states that haven’t made sports betting legal yet.
Locals of the states with no betting legislations can still wager on sports. If they want to place bets in the US, they will still have to travel to states like New Jersey and Indiana to access US-based online bookies. However, for people who do not want to travel, betting on offshore bookies is the way to go.
Of course, betting offshore poses risks and so it’s important to be cautious about this. Sites like 10CRIC review online bookies and casinos thoroughly. This can help make a punter sure that they are on a reputable site and won’t encounter fraudulent activities.
The downside of letting Americans place bets with off-shore bookies, however, is the loss of revenue. This is why many states were quick to work on legalizing sports betting after the Supreme Court’s decision in 2018.
The Supreme Court of the United States was triggered by the state of New Jersey to review the Professional and Amateur Act or PASPA of 1992 in terms of allowing sports betting. The Supreme Court then made a decision to find PASPA unconstitutional and the rest was history.
Currently, states like New Jersey, West Virginia, Indiana, Rhode Island, and New York have already launched local sports betting and more states like Michigan will soon follow. On the other hand, Kentucky still has quite a way to go in terms of launching sports betting.
The legislation of sports betting locally can be helpful to a state’s economy. Take for example how New Jersey is making a lot of revenues from it. New Jersey is now seen next to Nevada in terms of this. Last year, New Jersey made around 4 billion US dollars of revenue through this alone. At some point last year, it even defeated Nevada’s monthly betting revenue.
Kentucky is aiming to make more revenues this year as they have had a shortfall of up to 1 billion US dollars for two years. The bill that was amended can help regulate tax on fantasy sports and based on studies, it could generate over 22 million US dollars each year.
Republican sponsor Adam Koenig partnered with Democrat Al Gentry with regard to this. According to Gentry, sports betting may not really help solve all of Kentucky’s economic and financial problems, but it’s still a good step to head there.
Here is Al Gentry’s statement about the matter:
“This bill is not going to solve our challenges, we know that, but it is a good first step. Sports betting is already here, fellas and gals. We just want to regulate it and obtain the revenues that are currently leaving the state.”
Despite the officials’ positivity on how the legislation of sports betting can help Kentucky’s economy, there are still some who expressed that they are not happy about it. These people still see sports wagering as a form of gambling that should remain prohibited according to the constitution.
Martin Cothran from the conservative group of the Family Foundation of Kentucky said, “With this bill, we are going to … thumb our noses at the constitution,” He’s disappointed in how the bill is moving forward to a Republican-controlled General Assembly. Here we are in a legislature controlled by what most everybody considers a conservative party,” he added.
Representative Adam Koenig who is also sponsoring the bill shared his piece that is somehow connected to what Cothran was saying. According to Koenig, sports wagering is more of a game of skill and not a game of chance, which is what gambling mainly is.
Despite the critics, things are still looking up in terms of the legislation of sports betting in the country. Business groups like the Kentucky Chamber of Commerce are also supporting this.