While General Assembly must tax instant racing, Stumbo says that won't be a window to wider tax reforms

02/22/2014 06:47 PM

The legislature would have to approve taxes to instant racing in the wake of this week’s state Supreme Court ruling, House Speaker Greg Stumbo told reporters Friday.

But such a tax measure wouldn’t necessarily increase the chances of a wider tax reform package, he said. The fate of tax reform rests in the hands of Gov. Steve Beshear and Senate Republican leaders who have met about the plan Beshear put forward last month.

“He’s still waiting on the Senate to indicate to him what if any parts of the revenue package they could accept,” Stumbo said.

Stumbo also isn’t in on those negotiations. Watch the Pure Politics segment to find out why:

The Supreme Court’s mixed decision Thursday allows the Family Foundation to continue challenging the legality of instant racing, in which patrons can bet on historical races on video terminals. And the decision said the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission had the authority to implement the game but not tax its revenue — only the legislature can do that.

That’s why Stumbo said the legislature should pass a bill this session to tax it.

“Or do you want them to just have the right to run those machines and not pay any taxes?” Stumbo asked rhetorically.


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