House Bill 551 – which would authorise sports wagering in the Bluegrass State – is heading to Governor Andy Beshear’s desk after clearing the Senate just hours before the deadline.
Beshear, a Democrat, has stated his intention to sign the bill, meaning that the outlook looks optimistic for legalised sports betting in Kentucky.
Lawmakers approved the legislation 26-12, with a 23-vote threshold for passage. The two-thirds majority requirement is a result of state rules regarding revenue generating laws being passed in a session not devoted to the budget.
“After years of urging lawmakers to legalise sports betting, we finally did it! Today’s result shows that hard work pays off,” said Beshear on Twitter. “Kentuckians will soon be able to place their bets here and, for the first time, we are going to keep those dollars to support our roads and bridges, schools and communities.”