Last week, Kentucky House Speaker Greg Stumbo -- who seemed to have lost his fire for the issue during the last legislative session -- vowed to again make legalizing casino gambling his top priority next year. And this time, he thinks he may finally have the recipe for success.
Why? Because he now has a much clearer plan that answers questions that were largely ignored in previous versions, such as exactly how government proceeds would be appropriated -- Education, Pension Funds and Kentucky racetracks would be the biggest beneficiaries -- and
the potential locations of casinos are more strictly defined.
Of course, many are already saying this effort is bound to fail again, but I think it's worth one more decent effort. For one thing, expanded gambling already has occurred recently in the form of those "Instant Racing" machines that are doing a pretty good impression of slot machines at several Kentucky racetracks. And Kentucky residents still flow across the border in huge numbers every day to gamble legally in neighboring states - where none of their dollars return home.
As long as no one is forced to patronize a casino, I have no reservation about using expanded gambling to help meet Kentucky's many significant fiscal challenges, and this time I hope Mr. Stumbo succeeds in getting this question on the ballot where the people can finally decide.
But call and tell us what you think.
I'm Bill Lamb and that's my Point of View.
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