Seum outlines proposal for 7 casinos in different regions; 10% revenue would go to horse industry

12/03/2013 10:28 PM

A proposal for casinos that will have the backing of business and some horse industry leaders will include licenses for a casino in seven regions of Kentucky and a requirement that 10 percent of revenue goes to the horse industry, the measure’s sponsor told Pure Politics.

Sen. Dan Seum, the Senate Republican caucus chairman who hails from Louisville, said he is still working on drafting the language for a constitutional amendment and separate enabling legislation to allow casino gambling.

The proposal will allow for the sale of a casino license in seven regions: Northern Kentucky, Louisville, Lexington, Eastern Kentucky, southern Kentucky along I-75, southern Kentucky along I-65 and Western Kentucky. He said the entity that is awarded the license in each region can pick the location to build the casino.

The group Kentucky Wins, co-chaired by Louisville developer Jonathan Blue and lawyer Ed Glasscock, is expected to get behind this measure. Blue and Glasscock told Pure Politics about their group’s public relations strategy last month.

Seum, speaking in his office in the Capitol Annex on Tuesday, said the details of his plan likely won’t be released until the first week of the 2014 legislative session, which begins Jan. 7.

Seum said the horse industry is more likely to coalesce behind one approach this time because of the “reality” of other states cutting into Kentucky’s share of the industry nationally. In the past, infighting among the horse owners and racetracks doomed similar measures.

“I told them in our meeting, to do nothing is deadly. To do something has its problems,” he said (0:30 of the second segment below).

Seum said he believes his proposal has about 20 votes now in the Senate. A constitutional amendment needs 23 to pass the Senate and 60 of the 100 House members in order to go onto the election ballot for voters’ ratification.


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