Expanded Gambling

Braving temperatures in the 30s on a recent Wednesday morning, the 25 or so people bunched in the Kroger parking lot in west Louisville had plenty of grounds for complaint.

But complaining they weren’t. To the contrary, this group was stoked about the occasion. In just a few minutes, a large luxury bus would be pulling up and taking them on a free trip to the Horseshoe Southern Indiana Casino. For the next five hours they would be playing slot machines, eating $12 worth of food on the house and hoping to go home winners.

Antoine Taveneaux, Wikimedia Commons

The issue of expanded gambling has been on Governor Steve Beshear's radar throughout his time in office.

The 2015 legislative session could very well be his last chance to see such a measure adopted. However, Beshear isn't optimistic there will be any movement on casino legislation during the session.  

Dewayne Neeley / Flickr (Creative Commons License)

Kentucky lawmakers may once again consider restoring voting rights for those who have committed low-level felony offenses in the next General Assembly session.

Daviess County Rep. Tommy Thompson says he hopes the 2015 legislature will join the majority of other states that give voting rights back to those who have served time for non-violent felonies.

Antoine Taveneaux, Wikimedia Commons

Opponents of expanded gambling in Kentucky are focusing on the social costs of casinos. Testimony from anti-gaming groups in Frankfort Wednesday connected expanded gambling with increases in crime and gambling addiction.

Members of anti-gaming groups told lawmakers that the harm gaming would cause isn’t worth the estimated $286 million in new tax revenue that Rep. Larry Clark says his gaming bill would generate. 

Antoine Taveneaux, Wikimedia Commons

Kentucky's debate over casino gambling is a long standing one, but there are indications the proposal has a greater chance of hearings this year in both legislative chambers.   

What to Expect from the 2014 Kentucky General Assembly

Jan 7, 2014

As temperatures in Kentucky slowly climb out of the polar abyss, so too will state lawmakers emerge from their districts and trek to Frankfort for the opening day of the 2014 regular session of the Kentucky General Assembly.

The session starts Tuesday.


The Illinois horse racing industry could find itself in a bind if lawmakers don't renew an online betting law that expires in January.

Supporters of a gambling expansion proposal are making changes to the legislation in an attempt to improve its chances with the Illinois Legislature and Gov. Pat Quinn.

Rikeesha Phelon is a spokeswoman for Senate President John Cullerton. She says Cullerton plans to strip language from the bill that would legalize Internet gaming and let lawmakers consider it as a separate measure.

A key Senate committee is meeting to discuss concerns that expanding gambling would open the door to political corruption and organized crime.

Senate President John Cullerton invited representatives of the Illinois Gaming Board and the Chicago Crime Commission to appear before the Senate Executive Committee Wednesday . Cullerton’s spokesperson Rikeesha Phelon says the Chicago Democrat wants to try to find a way to address the issue. But she says Cullerton has doubts about whether the concerns are legitimate or "hyperbole" intended to derail the measure.


Kentucky House leaders are considering legalizing Instant Racing across Kentucky to help plug the funding gap in the state's pensions.