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Kentucky Budget Issues Makes Gambling Proposals More Attractive

Thursday, April 02, 2009

FRANKFORT, Kentucky -- As reported by The Courier-Journal: "House Speaker Greg Stumbo's proposal for video lottery terminals at racetracks was quashed in the General Assembly session that ended
  last week -- but it may not be gone for long.

"Some lawmakers say that with the state's budget situation worsening, expanded gambling may be one of the next revenue-producing ideas they consider, maybe as soon as this summer.

"In one form or another, proposals to raise state revenue and help the horse industry with more gambling have failed repeatedly over the last decade in Kentucky's legislature. But a recession deeper than any other during that period, predictions of a bigger state shortfall, and lawmakers' reluctance to raise taxes are aligning to keep the issue alive.

"....Consultants for Kentucky's racetracks told House members this year that video lottery terminals could pull in $328 million in taxes to the state in the first year and a total of $1.96 billion over the course of the first five years..."

"...Gov. Steve Beshear said in a speech Thursday night that he was leaning toward calling lawmakers back for a special session to deal with next year's budget, though he didn't mention gambling among the possible issues it would address..."


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