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Slots Bill Gets Hearing In Frankfort; No Action Taken

From Kentucky Public Radio's Tony McVeighThe 2009 Kentucky General Assembly may be winding down, but that didn’t stop House leaders from holding one last hearing on video slots legislation.Kentucky horse industry representatives say states with video slots at horse tracks are out-competing Kentucky tracks by offering bigger race day purses. They predict video slots at Kentucky tracks could generate $328 million in state tax revenue in the first year of operation. That’s why House Speaker Greg Stumbo is touting his bill allowing video lottery terminals at eight Kentucky tracks. “We are simply trying to formulate a plan that if the General Assembly chooses, that we will have the best plan to go forward with that we possibly can,” Stumbo said.Stumbo appears to be priming the pump for action on the slots bill this summer--if there’s a special session on the budget--or in 2010. The bill emerged from a House committee this session then was recommitted to the Budget Committee, where it received a late-hour hearing, but no action.

Rick Howlett is host of WFPL's weekly talk show, "In Conversation." Email Rick at rhowlett@lpm.org.