Horse industry not giving up on expanded gambling

A bill for more gaming at the tracks died in a Senate committee on Monday, yet there was still a glimmer of hope in the capital Tuesday for last minute legislation.

“If we don't get it done in the next day or two, then we will move forward to get ready for January,” said Kentucky Thoroughbred Association Exec. Director David Switzer.

But lawmakers in the House and Senate were focused on budget and incentive bills Tuesday and not on any last ditch efforts for slots.

“I don't think anything will change on that issue until something changes in the Senate,” said House Speaker Greg Stumbo, D-Prestonsburg. A Senate committee voted down the slots bill 10 to 5 on Monday night.

Already the owner of Ellis Park in Henderson says that track will close on Labor Day.

”And I'm not so sure that they are not laying off employees today,” said Switzer.

And in a strange twist of irony, Ohio, which could take even more horse business away from Kentucky if its legislature approves expanded gambling, wants a copy of Kentucky's slots plan to model theirs from.

“Just another nail in the coffin for us,” said Switzer.

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