LOUISVILLE, Ky. - Kentucky gamblers can now go over the river to place sports bets. A new law went into effect in Indiana at the start of the month, legalizing sports wagering there.
Winner's Circle in Clarksville, Indiana started sports betting at its facility on Sept. 12. It was a full house for the first weekend of sports gambling there. It's no surprise that Kentuckians like Billy Dunn made the short drive specifically for this reason.
"I like watching sports and betting on games. It's like a second job," Dunn said.
Kentucky lawmakers failed to pass a sports betting bill this legislative session even though the bill passed out of committee. It did not receive a floor vote. There are new efforts to bring sports gambling to Kentucky.
There's a prefiled bill to provide the framework for sports wagering at horse tracks and off-track betting facilities.
"I figure, if you can bet on horse racing in Kentucky, why can't you bet on football, baseball, basketball or any other sport?" Dunn asked.
After more states legalized it, Kentucky lawmakers like Rep. Jason Nemes, R-Louisville, said Kentucky is behind the curve but should follow suit.
"We fall behind on all kinds of things. We fall behind on casinos more broadly. We fall behind on medical marijuana. We fall behind in a lot of places in Kentucky. We need to do better as a state," Nemes said.
Meanwhile, Gov. Matt Bevin said he is not opposed to it coming, but it may be more trouble than it's worth.
"Last year they made, in total tax revenue, about $17 million on this in Nevada where they have it many multiples of what we will have it," Bevin said.
Some Kentucky lawmakers said, if passed in the 2020 session, sports betting could become legal in Kentucky on July 1.