2:23pm

Mon January 9, 2012
State Capitol

New Gambling Plan may Surface this Week

It could be only a matter of days before Governor Steve Beshear unveils his plan for a constitutional amendment for expanded gambling. The governor has been in talks for weeks with Democratic and Republicans lawmakers about how to word the amendment to ensure it’s passed. In the Senate that means getting help from Republican state Senator Damon Thayer of Georgetown.

And while Thayer has said he’s hoping for a slower process, Beshear told reporters today he wouldn’t wait until February to introduce the bill.

“Well I don’t have any artificial deadlines on this," Beshear said. "Obviously we need to get this done before the end of the session and we’ll be moving sooner rather than later. We’re not going to be waiting around till up in February to put anything out on the table. You know we’re looking in the next week or so to have language out there or a bill out there and hopefully active consideration on it.’

The bill could see up to nine available locations for new casinos in the state. And many proponents of the issue say they would like most, if not all, of the new casinos at Kentucky’s horse racing tracks.

Beshear has yet to give any details about his bill, but he has been working with members from both parties on the amendment’s language.

“I think several senators, both Democrat and Republican, have expressed support of the idea of getting this issue on the ballot finally and letting the people decide," Beshear said. "So I’m cautiously optimistic that as we pull everybody together we will find the language that folks can agree upon and we’ll get something passed the Senate, over to the House, and get it passed the House and onto the ballot.”