New Kentucky Sports Betting Bill Light On ParticularsBy Jill R. Dorson | Published: January 22, 2019 at 10:00 am
A Kentucky sports betting bill filed ahead of the 2019 session has been referred to the Appropriations and Revenue Committee for review, but does not yet appear on the committee’s calendar. The bill, HB 12, is sponsored by Representatives Al Gentry (D-District 46) and Dennis Keene (D-District 67), and seeks to amend the Kentucky Revised Statutes to include sports betting.
It’s the second sports betting bill to be introduced this session, and the first in the House.
The bill explicitly allows for betting on collegiate sports and names the Kentucky Lottery Corporation as the regulatory body, and is heavy on details about the lottery corporation’s board, who can and can’t bet on sports betting, and the like, but light on the specifics of a framework. Key items such as tax rate, application fees and whether or not mobile sports betting will be legal are not addressed in the bill. In fact, the bill appears to only allow in-person sports betting, and only at “retailers that have a seating capacity of at least 20.”
Kentucky only allows betting on horse races
Though Kentucky is the heart of horse racing in the America, it has no casino infrastructure. The only kind of gaming currently legal is Kentucky is betting on horse racing.
Lawmakers and stakeholders in Kentucky spent considerable time over the summer and fall discussing sports betting in public forums, special-interest meetings, working groups and through interim committees. Kentucky lawmakers appear to want to move forward with sports betting in 2019, but the session will have only 30 working days, and adjourns on March 29. It legislature is currently in recess until Feb. 5.
The senate bill filed by Julian Carroll (D-District 7) calls for a 25 percent tax on net sports betting revenue and creates Kentucky Gaming Commission. Both Carroll’s bill and HB 12 would direct any state sports betting revenue to help mitigate the state’s pension debt.
Below is a look at HB 12:
Mobile sports betting? No
In-person registration required? Not applicable
Tax rate: Not addressed
Application/renewal fee: Not addressed.
Legal to bet on college games: Yes.
Fee or royalty or compensation to pro leagues: No.
Use of “official league data” mandated?: No.
Regulatory body: Kentucky Lottery Corporation
Where the money goes: After paying for the administration and oversight of sports betting, proceeds will be divided up two percent (not to exceed $2 million in one fiscal year) to problem gambling awareness and 98 percent to the Kentucky Employees Retirement System nonhazardous retirement fund and the Kentucky Teachers’ Retirement System pension fund.