There’s no question that the online gambling market in the USA is blooming. New states are joining the fray every day seeing the revenue online casinos and sports betting bring. Kentucky sports betting will go live soon, with the state’s lawmakers just having received a new bill.
Legalized Kentucky online sports betting seems to be coming soon to the delight of thousands of fans. Kentucky online casinos and betting sites have been illegal so far, with Kentucky sports fans unable to place their bets online. That might change drastically soon after a new Kentucky online gambling laws bill was delivered to lawmakers that aims to legalize both retail and online sports betting.
Is Online Sports Betting Legal in Kentucky?
Right now, you can’t place legal bets in a Kentucky online casino or sportsbook. Fans have been disappointed by the state’s decision to stay away from online gambling for years, but that might come to an end soon.
The Kentucky sports betting bill has its fans and opponents, with the first group bigger in numbers. Those in favor of legalization say that Kentucky sports gambling and casino gaming online could deliver up to $22 million in revenue annually. More importantly, it will keep bettors and casino players’ money in the state, as many bet their money offshore or in neighboring states.
The Story So Far
There’s been a lot of talk and no walk when it comes to the legalization of sports betting in Kentucky. Players have been aching for a new law to be drafted that will allow them to gamble online in their state. So far, they could only do it via offshore accounts and in neighboring states. Of course, that meant money spent elsewhere instead of going into the state’s purse.
With the new law that may pass soon, every US online casino in Kentucky and each sportsbook will be able to offer their services to the state’s residents legally. No more wondering can you bet on sports in Kentucky online – the reality is closer than ever. It’s a shame for a state such as Kentucky not to offer legal online gambling. Sports betting on the Kentucky Derby is a significant event every year for sports fans, and not being able to do it in your state is defeating.
Thanks to Republican Rep. Adam Koenig, it’s time for the Kentucky Derby sports betting to go legal. The new bill has been years in the making and it was finally presented before lawmakers on Monday. It adds a new pile on top of the issues Kentucky’s lawmakers have to resolve in the final stretch of this year’s legislative session.
This isn’t the first try to legalize online sports betting in Kentucky. The previous wagering bills were shot down, showing the divisiveness of gambling issues in the state. Supporters of the earlier bills argued that Kentucky sports and casino fans spend over $20 million annually in neighboring states and at international casinos rather than spending them in the Bluegrass state. With the new bill, such a thing won’t happen anymore.
That kind of money will do the state a lot of good.
Seeking to Legalize Most Forms of Online Gambling
The bill would ultimate legalize most forms of gambling including Kentucky sports betting. After years of uncertainty, bettors can now bet on the Kentucky Derby with ease. It will also seek to regulate taxation on the forms of legalize gambling, including poker and fantasy sports.
The newly proposed Kentucky online gambling laws also feature a ban on the so-called “gray machines”. These are essentially slot machines that are popular in convenience stores. Slots have been popular in stores and pubs a few centuries ago, but were latter banned by the authorities. It managed to evade laws in Kentucky, allowing players to spin them and win cash prizes if successful.
Koenig hopes that the combined proposals will be legalize in one measure. However, if that isn’t possible, it would take several proposals to pass all the proposals.
Changes in Tax Structure
Under the new laws, there will also be changes in tax structure regarding pari-mutuel wagering. In simple terms, bets on Kentucky Derby sports betting will now carry a 1.5% tax on all wagers. These include historical horse race betting, advance-deposit wagering, and simulcast bets. Additionally, the Kentucky sports betting bill will allow the Horse Racing Commission to generate operational funds. T will save the governing body around $3 million per year and possibly generate over $20 million annually through capped funds that will enter the Kentucky Thoroughbred Development Fund.
After years of uncertainty, it’s clear that the Bluegrass state is eager to get things underway when it comes to Kentucky online gambling. Most of the bills focus on sports betting, but other forms of online gambling will be legalized too.
According to public polls, over 65% of Kentuckians support the law. Nearly 50% Kentuckians admitted they’ve bet on one event or another in the past year, while 36% among them have bet over 5 times. Sports gambling, especially online, is a big hit in Kentucky, and it may finally be legalized once and for all.
It has already done great things in Colorado, Indiana, and Iowa, not to mention Jersey or Nevada. Even though the government has fought gambling for decades, it eventually grew too big online to be ignored. Kentucky online gambling being legalized is music to the ears of thousands of bettors who had to bet in neighboring states so far.
It’ll be easier from now on if the bill is passed, which is expected to be finished soon. Illegal gambling operators have been raking insane profits so far, especially during the Superbowl. As many of you already know, this is the largest sports event in the USA every year, and this year’s numbers set new records. With the new Kentucky sports betting bill passed, licensed operators will be able to push illegal sites out of the market and make profit, with a nice portion going to the state. Just like it should be.
1. Kratzenberg, Jake. “Kentucky Representative Introduces Legislation to Legalize Sports Wagering.” Lane Report | Kentucky Business & Economic News, 1 Mar. 2022, https://www.lanereport.com/153042/2022/03/kentucky-representative-introduces-legislation-to-legalize-sports-wagering/
2. Horn, Austin, and Patton, Jenet. “Kentucky House Legislators Push for Legal Sports Betting. Here’s What To Know” Lexington Herald Leader, 28 Feb. 2022, https://www.kentucky.com/news/politics-government/article258896323.html
3. Smiley, Brett. “Kentucky Sports Betting Bill Will Be Revived in 2022, but Even Supporters Are Pessimistic.” SportsHandle, 21 Dec. 2021, https://sportshandle.com/kentucky-legislators-not-optimistic-sports-betting-bill/