Kentucky lawmakers are in a rush to approve the state’s one-year budget. They aim to maintain the current spending levels. What this means, is that a lot of possible programs, sports betting among them, will not push through for the year. The approval of the budget was swift, as they plan to prepare the budget allotted to address the coronavirus pandemic. Thus, Kentucky has no budget for bookies. At least for this year.
A lot of people had high hopes when Governor Andy Beshear was elected into office, as he agrees that gambling and sports betting would be a great revenue stream for the government. The governor wanted, aside from retail gambling, to have operators open an online casino and even allow sportsbooks.
Kentucky Has No Budget for Bookies: No Gambling for Now
This would have been a controversial move for a state who has certain public figures who are against gambling. However, recent polls show us a state whose residents are open to having gambling options available. Both republican and democratic representatives from congress were promoting HB 137. This would have opened the state to online gaming and sportsbooks for those who are interested in becoming a bookie in Kentucky.
In addition, the governor also does not want his residents traveling to nearby states such as West Virginia and Indiana. Currently, those who want to bet on sports or play casino games can do so by crossing state lines. Kentucky is behind all the other states, and is losing possible revenue from gaming.
But there is still hope for the state. The General Assembly normally passes a 2-year budget, what would have lasted until 2022. But since this year’s budget was rushed to accommodate the coronavirus programs, only a one-year budget was passes. If gambling remains to be advocated for, perhaps we can see it happen in 2021’s budget.