‘I think the session as a whole was very productive’: Senate President Stivers shares thoughts on 2023 Legislative Session

Published: Mar. 31, 2023 at 3:26 PM EDT
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FRANKFORT, Ky. (WYMT) - Senate President Robert Stivers said he believes the 2023 Legislative Session went well.

“I think the session as a whole was very productive. A lot of big issues that people did not expect to get through,” he said.

He also discussed two bills that Governor Beshear signed on Friday morning. One being Senate Bill 47 which will legalize medical marijuana. Stivers voted against it.

“I’m neither really for it or against it because I think there should have been more testing and I think the federal government should’ve stepped in to have a consistent pattern of how you deal with basically what’s THC,” he said.

However, he also said he is sympathetic to people who will benefit from it.

“I’m satisfied with the result. There was support for the issue and the way we dealt with the issue in our caucus. Even people I don’t want to say were against it they just weren’t in a position to support it,” he said.

He also said he voted in favor of House Bill 551. He said he believes sports betting is inevitable.

“Sports betting is taking place it just depends how it takes place,” he said. “Through electronics today people are going to wager in sports no matter where you are. So, why not control it? Why not make it something that is not in the darker realms of our society, and that you get some benefit from it.”

Governor Beshear also signed House Bill 5 on Friday. It gives a tax break to the bourbon industry. Changes made to the final version gradually lowers the property tax for distilleries from 2026 to 2043.

That is four years longer than the original bill.