WKYT | Lexington, Kentucky | News

Lawmakers Turning Attention On Gambling To Legislative Panel

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) - Gov. Steve Beshear met behind closed doors
with House leaders Monday night in an effort to jump-start efforts
to amend the state constitution and allow casino gambling in
Kentucky.

Whether the move worked remains to be seen.

House leaders left an approximately half-hour meeting in
Beshear's Capitol office saying they would turn their attention to
a Tuesday morning committee hearing where dueling versions of a
proposed constitutional amendment are pending. Beshear also said he
was awaiting the panel's action on the gambling legislation.

"I can tell you this, if House leadership is not united in
backing this constitutional amendment, then it will be in great
jeopardy of passing the House," Beshear told reporters after the
meeting. "It has to have the united effort of the House leadership
and they have told me that we would have that and I'm expecting
it."

Discord among House lawmakers has slowed Beshear's gambling
proposal.

Beshear is pushing a plan to legalize casino gambling in
Kentucky as a way to boost otherwise sagging revenues that has left
the state facing an approximately $900 million budget shortfall
over the next two years. Kentucky could take in hundreds of
millions of dollars in new revenue if it allowed casino gambling,
Beshear said.


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