Legislature Recesses, But Doesn’t Adjourn
The final scheduled day of the General Assembly came and went with accomplishing very little. However, they didn’t adjourn for the summer and will reconvene later in June. SB7, our gaming bill, as expected was never called in the House. We passed it out of the Senate a few weeks ago. Without a budget in place, we are told the bill will simply have to wait. We had a small VGT bill pass out of the gaming subcommittee but it never advanced from there. Our money for the State and County Fairs also sits in limbo, awaiting the final budget. The one encouraging development from this session so far is an internet gaming bill that seemingly came out of nowhere. Originally, we were not included, but through tenacious work by the lobbying teams of all three horsemen’s groups we were able to get into the bill and garner a fair deal. The bill allows fantasy sports and allows casinos to get an online gaming license. The bill in its current form would also allow racetracks and ADW companies to get an online gaming license. Before obtaining a license though, both racetracks and ADW’s would have to contract with horsemen for a percentage of the revenue, a plan for eliminating recapture and a guarantee of live racing dates. This bill passed the Senate 42-10. It now has to be passed in the House and then would need a signature by the Governor. If this bill ever becomes law, the potential revenue for purses is very, very promising . We will keep everyone abreast of the facts and the issues as they progress.