Being 'totally devoid of leadership' cost Ky. a chance to approve casino amendment, Osborne says

03/21/2013 01:29 PM

A leadership breakdown in Frankfort cost Kentucky a chance to take up a constitutional amendment to allow casinos and has imperiled a deal on shoring up Kentucky’s public pension system, state Rep. David Osborne, R-Prospect said.

“I’m extremely disappointed on what we’ve seen out of the pension reform issue — on multiple levels,” he said (Watch the interview at 5:45 to hear why. And hear on whom the blame lies according to Osborne at 6:40).

Osborne also said 52 Democrats essentially voted for an expanded gambling bill when they approved a measure to cover increased payments into the state employee pension fund that included capturing more money from instant racing and the expansion of lottery games.

“If they can get 52 votes for that, I am confident that there are more than enough Republicans to fill in that difference to get to 60 votes. We have those votes right now on a gambling bill, yet we do not have the leadership to put this issue forward,” Osborne said. (1:00)

Osborne said Gov. Steve Beshear needs to take the lead on it.

But Osborne also fielded questions about the horse industry’s failure to coalesce behind an approach. “We have obviously been our own worst enemy,” Osborne said (2:00). And he laid out a path for a casino gambling to eventually pass the General Assembly (2:30 – 4:45)

But he said he doesn’t expect lawmakers to have to choose between expanded gambling and tax reform.

“No, I think we need to do both,” he said (4:55)


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