Senate Republicans decide against considering casino gambling bill

jbrammer@herald-leader.comFebruary 15, 2013 

LUKE SHARRETT

FRANKFORT — Legalizing casino gambling in Kentucky appears to be off the table for this year's legislative session.

Senate President Robert Stivers, R-Manchester, said Friday there was little desire among the Republican caucus to pursue the issue.

"There has been discussion among members of the caucus on the issue of expanded gambling," Stivers said in a written statement. "Leadership felt that the sentiment was simply not there to address it due to it being a short session with major issues such as pension reform still outstanding."

Friday was the last day for senators to file bills for consideration in the 2013 General Assembly, which lasts 30 workdays. Tuesday is the filing deadline for House bills.

A House member always could file a constitutional amendment for expanded gambling but the issue would face an uphill battle in the Senate given Stivers' comments.

Senate Majority Caucus Chairman Dan Seum, R-Louisville, said in a statement that he had discussed the possibility of a bill to allow casinos with some members of the Republican caucus but "found that there was not enough sentiment to deal with it since this is a short session with other more pressing issues."

The Kentucky General Assembly has debated for more than two decades whether to allow casino gambling.

Jack Brammer: (502) 227-1198. Twitter: @BGPolitics. Blog: bluegrasspolitics.bloginky.com

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